Tigers looking for bullpen help

A day after Tigers manager Jim Leyland shot down any notion of Rick
Porcello on the trading block, he admitted the Tigers have placed a
priority on relief help as they head towards the July 31 trading
deadline. (Thanks to associate reporter Alex DiFilippo for grabbing the quotes.)

“We would like to shore up our bullpen with maybe a little more of a
veteran guy or something, if he’s out there,” Leyland said Saturday
afternoon. “I don’t know if they are out there or not. I’ll leave it at
that. …

“I’m not saying it has to be a veteran, veteran reliever. Somebody
that’s maybe had a little more experience. We aren’t going to lie about
it. We’d like to have that. It’s pretty tough to have as many kids as we
have down there now.”

Leyland comments came a day after he had to bring in closer Jose
Valverde to finish out a 7-3 win over the Twins. Ryan Perry began the
ninth inning with a 7-2 lead but gave up singles to both batters he
faced, Michael Cuddyer and Delmon Young. That brought out Leyland to
make a change, and brought out some frustration after the game.

“If you have a five-run lead in the ninth inning and you have to use
your closer time after time, your closer will be shot,” Leyland said
Friday night. “You just can’t do it. If we don’t have somebody down
there that can hold a five-run lead in the ninth inning besides the
closer, then we’re in trouble.”

Perry was supposed to be that guy and a big addition when the Tigers
activated him from the disabled list last weekend. He has made four
appearances since then with mixed results, the last two of them rather
rough.

“This is the Major Leagues and stuff happens fast up here,” Leyland
said. “I thought it was a perfect setting for Perry. He threw nothing
but fastballs and paid the price and didn’t have good command.”

31 Comments

Relief help yes – but I have less faith in the starting rotation than the pen. My opinion.

Great to see the team playsing ball like this. Missed the last few games (scouting in Mexico again!). Wished |I could have seen yesterday’s game but am getting a chance to see todya. Bonerman’s body language is just awful. man up Jeremy!
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Any word on who is replacing Morneau?
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Ordonez is haveing a great year isn’t he?
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Let’s keep and cultivate Porcello.
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I’d let Bondo go though.

Did Perry insult Leyland’s wife or something? He has no problem calling him out on the carpet. We all see what Perry’s doing (or isn’t doing), but why does he get such a beating in public? My maternal instincts kicking in to defend here.
*

Great game. Boesch should have enough ABs tomorrow to qualify for the leader board. He should go to the All-Star game.
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VV great again. Amazing actually.
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Avila hit the snot out of the ball today. Only got the one hit but is driving the ball hard.

I was really thrilled with the two Twinkie wins. It’s hard to complain when most everything went well. My only concern was not trying to work a deeper count with Blackburn, especially Jackson. He’s a keeper, but he just doesn’t fit a prototype leadoff man yet. Blackburn, though giving up the gophers, didn’t hit 50 pitches until the fifth. Luckily, the big its left the park. That’s my big complaint; it certainly pails in the face of two straight; now up 5 on the lost column. I wish the Sawx would run out of steam. Go Tigers.

Greg

The Tigs are really on a roll and a shame the break is coming up, though hopefully Chisox on a longer run will cool of more.
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No question we need two experienced pitchers – a starter who is not a gun but the others can learn from and an experienced setup man, with no one probably better than Brandon Lyon. He doesn’t come cheap though with his $5m a season but no good having a great closer if the game isn’t there to be saved.
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I agree Tracey – it annoys me how JL seems to manage his players via the media.
Management hasn’t made many mistakes lately but rushing Perry back after only one good innings in a no pressure loss situation was downright stupid. He had walked 4 in 2.2 IP prior.
Perry admitted his minor injury had not caused his command issues to the point he can not throw a secondary pitch or consistently locate his fastball. Perry should have stayed down for at least a few more reliefs and shown he could pitch under pressure again.
Showing a bit more faith in Fien could have paid dividends and Perry would likely by now be back in groove and not also now facing confidence issues.

All I can say is “you had to be there.” The most fun I’ve had in ages. OMG, Miggy hit one right off and the man next to be said “what’ Johnny gonna do?” I yelled out Johnny Be Good and he hits the 3 run slam. Big crowd, beautiful weather and the Tigers were in their element. It’s so different actually attending a game than always watching on TV. All those commercials we have to watch and all the stuff we don’t see on the field during those commercials. We had a big wave going, too.
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Watched the Twins take BP right near the dugout and Thome was just blasting them out of there and I thought ugh-oh, but that was just their BP. It was our bats the balls were flying from. Saw Jim go out to the mound, got real tired of all the Twins’ mound confabs.
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Bondo pitched well, but he does need a third pitch. Coke is real exciting when he comes out and I thought maybe I wouldn’t get to see Papa after pitching last night, but he didn’t disappoint. He is just fabuous. Everything I dreamed he would be.

As the young kids would say, my bad. After watching and am still watching the game on DVR since coming home and watching on TV isn’t so bad either. Lots of replays and slo-mo’s showing a great play and certainly would never want to watch and lisen to an interview with Al Kaline during a game. That was very special.
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Rod gave all his love to the Tigers today on Fox Sports. Always honest about the Twins and even the Tigers’ problems and/or weaknesses, he lathered praise on “his” team. He seemed more comfortable today on another network than he does on FSN. I definitely would miss Rod.

Well, you know what I meant to say. Tired. Have to work tomorrow so you guys better put a whippin on those Twins. Let their fans suffer for a change.

Glad you had fun PUP. It was a fun game to be at with all the homers. I watched it on tv yesterday. We were going to go down, but decided too late and it was sold out except for standing room and I am too old for that.
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Rod I thought did a pretty good job on national tv. I thought in fact he tried to shift conversation to the Twins at times, but the other guy was leading it back to the Tigers. They always do it on the national broadcasts though, whoever is winning gets the chatter.
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And Alex was smacking the ball but only had one hit to show for it.
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It was nice to see them hit Cy Blackburn now lets see what they can do against Pavano??

Don’t have a problem with what JL said about Perry after the game. You got a 5 run lead, come in and throw strikes. If they hit you, so be it—but don’t be falling behind and then have to groove one. I was thinking Leyland wasn’t gonna be thrilled with using Valverde with a 5 run lead, and he wasn’t. Perry is very similar to Zumaya in that he basically has 2 pitches. When he doesn’t command his breaking pitch he has trouble. When he doesn’t command either, he has real trouble. Not ready to pull the trigger on any trade yet for a setup guy. Weinhardt has looked impressive thus far but we need to see a little more of him. Our starters are the key, IMO. They need to go out and consitently give us 6 good innings.

–Ed

Galalrraga was right to be angered by his demotion. Today was his game. Instead an AAA pitcher is there trying to throw strikes and he cant

Venezuelantiger- the only thing I can think is maybe they are trying to use Oliver as trade bait and wanted the opportunity to show him off again.

I would have had Oliver out of there after the 3rd inning at the latest. Luck only takes you so far. This kid needs to throw strikes. You can’t pitch up here always behind in the count.
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Would have been a good day for a bullpen start. Is Brad Thomas still with the team?
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–Rich

4-0. JL waited too long. This is an example of how he gives away ballgames. A good example.
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–Rich

I’ve seen enough. We need someone who can throw strikes today. We don’t have that much room against Pavano. The bullpen won’t be used for a week- let’s use them. It’s not often we catch the Twins when they are down and we need to take advantage.

I think the reason Oliver is here is becasue of his LH arm. I don’t think they want to showcase him. The Twins LHB usually murder us so JL wanted to have a LHP in the rotation.
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Santiago has really kept us in the game today. Pavano is weaving his magic against us again.

Was hoping that Oliver would get us a quality start today. Don’t think he will with the way he is letting guys reach base. He’s been bailed out by his defense and that can’t go on too long. Leadoff walks will kill you.

I honestly tried to post my displeasure with Bonine before he gave up that 2 run double. He has not done a good job latlely and if memory serves me right he has been giving up runs in almost every appearnace. I know they need a swing man and a long guy in the pen but they have to be thinking about whether he is the man. Fastball to Cuddyer who was looking for it was unneccesary with 1st base open.

How’s the song go? “2 out of 3 ain’t bad”.
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Unless we can get Pavano off the mound I think this one is not going to go our way. He really knows how to pitch and seems to save his best for us.

Well well well. Isn’t it convenient that KC scratched Grienke. Just like last year when the Twins didn’t have to face him till the last weekend of the year and Grienke finally stunk.
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No regarding the first inning today. Nobody will ever convince me that Span was walked in the first inning. Those there were two pitches that Oliver had that were so strikes and weren’t called that. It would of been a completely different inning. And some of the calls that Cy Pavano was getting??? Well lets just say I thought it was interesting at best.
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That being said Twins would still be winning this game. They didn’t even get a hit until the 5th as we all know..
But it would be a 4-3 game instead of a 6-3 game?? Big difference ya think??

BTW, Porcello had a very good outing yesterday. No runs with 7 Ks Mud Hesn lost anyway. They have been struggling horribly the last few weeks.

I made two in-game posts that got buried several posts up. Not much point in commenting in-game if that’s how it works. I can see the comments are listed in chronological time order, but the times I see posted are in the future. This one will probably go in above Dan and GK too.
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–Rich

Oliver must be being showcased, because I would go with Galarraga or bullpen start over him against Twins…
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Bonine has given up a run now in his last 5 appearances and 6 of his last 8…magic is running out with him.
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Brad Thomas should not pitch in meaningful game situations. I can understand him as the 3rd lefty for maybe 1 batter here and there or as the long man in the pen, but he has not overmatched anyone this year.
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Boesch needs to learn to lay off the high pitches. Teams are starting to figure out that he will swing at them and pop them up or swing and miss.
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After all that, we took 2 of 3 from Twins, which I think we would have been happy with at the start of the series, and 7 of 9 on homestand. Barring a Royals comeback, we will be .5 games out at the break, which I think any Tiger fan would have taken at the start of the season. Now let’s hope JV or Boesch is named a replacement All-Star, enjoy our vacation and come out bashing against the Indians.

No, my 4:05 post is listed as 5:13. No sense to it whatsoever.
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ANYWAY………….
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I think Bonine doesn’t get enough work. JL makes sure his late innings guys are sharp, but not the middle relief. I guess that’s how it works. I’d put Bonine in the rotation if we traded for another reliever. Oliver’s time is not now. If we absolutely must have a lefty starter, we’ll need to trade for one of those too. Can’t use Coke for that at this point. As good as the bullpen has been, it feels like a big question mark going into the second half.
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It appears that Chicago will go into the break in first place. That’s okay, because we will play them FOURTEEN times in the second half. If you can’t beat the teams in the race, you have no business being in the race, so we’ll just have to take care of that business or go home empty. And you can take that to Leyland’s bank.
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–Rich

On the money as always Rich. We’ve got to beat the central guys(how obnoxious are the White Sox), and we’ve got to play .500 on the road. I don’t care about any more great stats, this and that, or whatever else. We go nowhere if we don’t start dominating KC, and playing .600 against Hawk’s good guys. The Twins pitching is worse than ours. I don’t know how Pavano has 6 losses, and gives up three homers in his previous start. He makes us look like amateurs. Enjoy the break. Bring it on. If we dance, just like Rich says, it has to go through Chi Town and KC.
Greg

Was working today and didn’t see the game except for a few minutes at lunchtime and Oliver was struggling to get the ball over the plate. Not ready for the show, as Rich stated.

We have a good lineup. We need pitching.

JL sat on his hands again – I was sure he would get more antsy without the cigs and would start pulling the trigger with his pitchers sooner rather than later. Other than VV and almost there JV, JL doesn’t have senior pitchers that you would delay trusting a turnaround based on experience.
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Nice to go into the break not needing to make any trades for the dugout – their chemistry is really ticking over nice. The errors are dropping even with the race well and truely on and no shirking with maximum effort being put in. A pleasure to watch.
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Rich asked earlier – 8 rookies by my calcs. used so far this season with Sizemore, Wells and Sborz and soon Oliver and maybe not Weinhardt back in AAA.

Unfortunately I predicted that the Sox would be in first place at the end of this weekend. I did think KC could manage one win especially Sunday with Greinke pitching.
So much for that. The Tigers did take 2 of 3 and I’m sure we would all settle for that in any series. After the break, the Sox and Twins play so maybe the Tigers can take back the lead and more. A lot depends on how well they handle the Indians. If you had told me in early April that the Tigers would be 10 games over at the All-Star break, I don’t think I would have believed you. But somehow with the injuries, the rookies, the starting pitching flux and a few players not yet hitting their stride, there they are. Now they need Porcello, Galarraga and Perry to come back. Also better hitting from Laird and Avila. If Jackson can have a similar second half, Damon start to hit, Inge hang onto that .260 BA, the rest continue as they have, and the bullpen remain strong, maybe just maybe …………

Counting pitching staff, I see 14 guys who have rookie status who have played for Tigers this year, and as mentioned, 8 who made their debuts this year. And we are .5 games out, do not have to deal with D-Train anymore and have managed to stay close even with Zumaya out. Not bad.

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