Tigers reportedly put in waiver claim on Qualls

The Tigers might have one more trade for bullpen help in them yet. Oddly enough, they can thank their recent fall out of the AL Central and Wild Card leads in part for getting in a last-minute waiver claim on Astros closer Chad Qualls.

Peter Gammons of MLB Network first reported that the Tigers had the primary claim on Qualls, who was a last-minute placement on the waiver wire after the Astros held onto him at the July 31 non-waiver deadline. That followed Ken Rosenthal’s report Monday evening that Qualls had been claimed on revocable waivers.

Under terms of revocable waivers, the Astros have 48 hours (thus, until Wednesday) to work out a trade, pull him back off waivers, or let him go on waivers.

At this point, it’s too early to tell whether the two teams, who put together a trade for then-Astros closer Jose Veras last summer, can work something out on Qualls. The Tigers were interested in Qualls last month before the July 31 nonwaiver trade deadline, but the Astros were reticent to deal. Detroit put together a trade with the Rangers for Joakim Soria instead.

One potential factor is the sentiment of Qualls, who does not have veto power but has said more than once that he wants to remain an Astro. Qualls signed a two-year, $5.95 million deal last December to return to his original organization, spurning interest from the Tigers among other teams.

Qualls’ contract is very manageable, having joined Houston on a two-year deal worth $5.95 million with a $3.5 million club option for 2016. He has said repeatedly, including last night, that he wants to remain in Houston, though he doesn’t have a say in it.

“I’ve been traded a bunch of times in my career and it’s no different,” Qualls told Houston reporters, including MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart. “I chose Houston because it’s close to home and I want to help this team win and I feel like I’ve been doing the best I can this year.

“Like I said all year, I’d like to stay here this year and obviously beyond that and finish my career as an Astro. It’s not in my hands, though, so I don’t really put too much thought into it.”

The Tigers were able to acquire the Astros’ last closer, Jose Veras, last summer for outfielder Danry Vasquez and pitcher David Paulino. With Qualls’ contract, however, the Astros will probably seek more advanced prospects. Houston had a pro scout in Reading, Pa., while Double-A Erie was in town this past weekend.

It’s more likely the Astros pull him off waivers than trade him, according to McTaggart.

Soria was in the Tigers bullpen for about two weeks before a left oblique strain landed him on the 15-day disabled list. He’s throwing off flat ground and is “trending upward” towards a return, according to manager Brad Ausmus, but still has to throw off a mound. His return is on the horizon, but not imminent.

The Tigers tried to fill part of the void last week with former Orioles/A’s closer Jim Johnson, who earned a win at Tampa Bay with a scoreless 10th inning despite walking two Rays, but then gave up four runs in a nine-run sixth inning in Friday’s 20-6 loss to the Twins. Johnson came back Sunday and retired all five batters he faced, his longest perfect outing since April 11 with Oakland.

The 36-year-old Qualls is 14-for-17 in save chances in Houston to go with a 3.07 ERA, 46 hits and 38 strikeouts over 44 innings. He has walked just five batters this season, and two were intentional. His 11-year-old Major League history has seen him protect leads anywhere from the seventh to ninth innings, much like the role the Tigers had for Soria.

Just because the Tigers made the first claim doesn’t mean they’ll be able to pull off a deal. The Astros were more willing to trade a young starter than their veteran reliever before the non-waiver deadline, and they’re still trying to win games down the stretch to demonstrate progress. Houston needs eight wins in its last 30 games to avoid 100 losses for the first time since 2010, and their near.500 record over the last month or two suggests an outside shot to avoid 90 losses.

57 Comments

Dude does NOT walk people. He IS however an NL reliever — so we’ll see how he fairs here. I think this bullpen can get it together. If they all got hot at the same time – including Nathan – the pen could be “strong”

Actually, Houston is in American League team now. (I have to remind myself of this all the time)

well, 8 out of 9 years in the NL

Is there still hope? Qualls would be a nice addition compared to the current “relief” corps. Looks better than the 3 “lost boys” the Tigers have to send out to try to hold or save wins right now. It is nice to think the GM is doing something…anything…to get back where they belong. Buster Olney thinks the M’s can win the West with their pitching and stable offense. So it behooves the Tigers to win the Central since A’s and Angels have better records that would be harder to make up. Go Tigers!

Hey Dennis, I thought you gave up on the Tigers this year?

I had. But wife saw some of my posts from Sat. & Sun. After being told to “snap out of it!” and after a “dope slap” I started to come to my senses. It was nice that my meds had an extra day to work without seeing Nathan, Coke or Joba in a box score. So, after 57 years of bleeding tiger blue & orange I am back in the parade… Still think DD damaged the aura of this team.

welcome back – good wife knocking some sense into ya!

Thank you. It’s a dark and cold world out there when the Tigers are in a funk!

Qualls should just stay in Houston. Let the journeyman bullpen guy finish out his career there where he’s close to home. Can’t really see him being a difference-maker for the Tigers. Not intending to speak harshly, but that’s the way I see it.

I don’t think that’s necessarily harsh since, from what I’ve heard, Qualls would rather stay in Houston. An acquired player would have to want to be in the race with Detroit or other contenders. I can understand Qualls’ viewpoint, if that is his viewpoint.

A journeyman near the end of his career and he DOESN’T want to go to a legitimate playoff contender for a month? After playing for Houston! We don’t need more of that….I hope he has been either misquoted or misunderstood.

ELT, RICH: what is the definition of a professional, then? he’d rather not be a part of a championship run? what the?

Qualls has pitched in the postseason three times. He began his career in Houston and just this year returned. Any number of reasons why he might want to stay there.
I know that when you head down the road to retirement, many things that used to be important aren’t anymore. Trust me on that one.

Anyone checked with his wife? Of all the guys I know who were able to play pro ball and made the majors, not one would pass up a short-term shot like this. Everyone remembers the day they signed and the day they retired.. And they all would have loved this opportunity!

A good read over at fangraphs right now: http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/the-tigers-arent-falling-apart-on-their-own/
.
Basically the tigers are going to get better, the Royals can’t sustain the .741 winning % they been playing at.

That’s a good read for anyone whose confidence has been shaken. Dude saved me a whole lot of typing.

Dennis, sounds like you’re married to Cher. 🙂

It’s one of our favorite movies..she pretty much knows the whole dialogue. She was disgusted with my attitude. I’m getting better…. Hoping for a sweep of the Yankees.

I’m just guessing on some possible motivations for Qualls. Everybody is different.
The trade most likely won’t happen anyway.

We have talked about team chemistry in the past years. Why would Oakland get rid of Yoenis for Lester. They already had good pitching, now they are not hitting. I like David Price but we better start hitting. We sure miss Miggy’s late inning heroics. That a boy Dennis. Go Tigers!

I so agree with you. Both teams made their “stupid” trades thinking they would be playing for the AL Championship. I remember MLB tonight commentator saying that the thinking for Detroit and Oakland was they could give up a little offense to get starters and pitching. Why Oakland gave up Cespides for Lester, after their earlier pitching trade didn’t make sense. I can understand getting Price, what with Verlander not being himself and Smyly as a rookie, with Sanchez out. But what they gave up was offensive stability, dependability and veteran presence for another starter…. against the backdrop of a weak bullpen. How many games have the Tigers lost or had to go into extra innings because of the 3 “lost boys”? It is almost shocking for a championship caliber team to be this weak in the pen.

ESPN will have the next two games. Today, at least in LatinAmerica
The poll last night, during Yankees- KC had it right: the best overall SS since 1980: Carl Ripken ,above Jeter and Omar

Qualls was alrady linked to the Tigers while he was with the Marlins. A GB pitcher with this defense…
Would be a nice bullpen: Soria, Nathan( Kennedy from BYB has a good idea, dont use him two consecitive games and he will be OK,). Qualls.Joba, the overload is getting to him. but . Al2 numbers are good enough to has Heyman asking a bigger role for him. Hardy, the rookie has been a huge surprise. Coke ,he probably earned an extension this month. What do you do with JJ? Coke is not answer to the question : who lost his job, he is LH

With the bullpen mish-mash you highlighted in your post, if the Tigers don’t rehire Ausmus that would definitely be a black mark on the organization. and he could lay the burden squarely on DD. Of course, I think he needs to go anyway.

Lineup vs. NYY: Kinsler 4, Hunter 9, Cabrera 3, V. Martinez DH, J. Martinez 7, Castellanos 5, Avila 2, Suarez 6, Davis 8. Porcello starts.

The playoff lineup

The playoffs start tonight….! And that is how the Yankees and four other teams are going to approach the rest of the season. Girardi said that last night in their win over KC…

Qualls:
Astro fans, Bad news: I might be traded to Detroit Good news: If so, you won’t have to worry about victory parade traffic in November

Heyman would know why Alburquerque isn’t considered closer material if he actually saw him work. Al is fine where he is.
I’m pretty sure the reason Nathan can’t go two consecutive days is because he throws too many pitches in his one inning. 20+ on a consistent basis. Same bottom line, though; no back to backs for him. Need Soria back badly.
Blaine Hardy was good in ST and he’s good now. I’m starting to buy in on him.

James Schmehl ‏@jamesschmehl 2m

Anibal Sanchez said he’s concerned that he may not be able to return this season after suffering a setback Monday.

It just keeps getting worse.

Yeah, I agree with you…. and it all started the day of the “big” trade. I can still feel the sinking sensation of that day when A-Jax ran off the field.

quit thinking with your heart Dennis – you’re brain knows we’re going to win the central!

No, my heart hopes and believes we will win..my brain is short-circuiting with the overload of stuff DD has done to this team. As a kid growing up in So.Cal, we used to play some variation of baseball 11 mos. a year, one of which was wiffle ball. I can still imitate the batting pose and swing of almost every Tiger from 1959 thru 1965. I bleed Tigers….. still have the scorecard and ticket stubs from a game in Detroit in 1962 framed in my office. So, yes, I want and hope the Tigers get into the playoffs. My brain, though, can’t compute what DD has done. But anyway…GO TIGERS!

McTaggart retwited by Beck:
Qualls said he had multiyear offers in winter from Astros and Tigers but chose to stay close to Austin home.

I like Sanchez but he appears to be injury prone.

hey i purchased MLB.TV today for 12 dollars — so now i’ll get to see the game tonight.
.
Now I wanna see HITS lots of HITS and maybe some Homers! Make it happen, Rich!

Price,Scherzer, Porcello, Verlander and Lobstein is good enough

In 5 days they can callup every pitcher on the 40 roster and use them one per inning is needed like .Ventura. Start by bullpen is not a novel idea

The 5th starter wouldn’t be needed for the post season roster, so they don’t have to rush and make a crazy deal.

Dennis, can you do Dick McAuliffe? Hank Aguirre? Charlie Maxwell?
And how about “The Rock”?

Bobo Osborne?

Larry Osborne ! You betcha… lifetime .206 BA. Nice lefty swing but at least he outhit Mr. Mendoza! I’m looking at his 59’Topps card right now. I even have an autograph on a scorecard!

Yes, yes, yes and yes….. and they pretty much summed up my career as a baseball player. McAuliffe was fun, but I was a natural right handed hitter (tried to become a switch-hitter) so I had trouble with the outside pitches, Aguirre (lifetime BA of .085)was a hero (!) as I once saw him get a double against the Angels, which was a slow roller that he topped up the 3rd base line. The 3rd baseman hoped it would go foul and he never stopped running. As for Maxwell, “Paw-Paw” usually hit a homer on Sunday but was average the rest of the week. Nice swing. And The Rock, Rocky Colavito, was awesome. I loved that trade, although my grandfather, dad and 3 uncles (we moved to So Cal from Detroit) thought Tigers were nuts for getting rid of Kuenn. He either hit one into the stands or rolled one to 2nd base. My all-time favorite, though, was “Stormin’ Norman” Cash… wild lefty swing with home run intended every time. Hit .361 to lead AL in 1961 with 41 HR’s. In 1962 he hit .243 but still got 39 HR”s. I could emulate him the best. Thanks for askin!

Any word on possible game time?

8:15

Just heard that, too.

Purnal Goldy?

Now you are talking! Bonus baby who didn’t last long…. once, during a night game against the Angels, he misjudged (?) a flyball. He said he lost it in the “moon”. Gotta love that guy. Another tiger I emulated in my high school and jr. college baseball career!

I was in college when he was with Tigers. Nice backup catcher. Decent hitter, too.

hah lost it in the moon

Orlando McFarlane?

Coot Veal?

Awesome…. how old are you? That is one name you rarely hear about with Tigers.
Backup SS…. Easy to emulate as a kid. He did get 1 ML homerun, though.

Rain stopped

When do they set miggy down and let him get well so he can hit and play first base? this looks like last year all over. owe

As the Tigers are back in the race can they afford to unless it is every couple days?

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