Tigers

Tigers Possess Multiple Candidates For Middle-Relief Roles

View Comments
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - JULY 24: Joaquin Benoit #53 of the Detroit Tigers delivers a pitch against the Minnesota Twins in the eighth inning on July 24, 2011 at Target Field in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Tigers defeated the Twins 5-2. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)

MINNEAPOLIS, MN – JULY 24: Joaquin Benoit #53 of the Detroit Tigers delivers a pitch against the Minnesota Twins in the eighth inning on July 24, 2011 at Target Field in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Tigers defeated the Twins 5-2. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)

Tigers Central
Shop for Tigers Gear
Buy Tigers Tickets

MLB Scoreboard
MLB Standings
Team STATS
Team Schedule
Team Roster
Team Injuries

Sports Fan Insider

Keep up with your favorite teams and athletes with daily updates.
Sign Up

The Tigers have one, maybe two, spots open for competition in the bullpen this spring.

Jose Valverde has the closer’s role nailed down, and Joaquin Benoit returns as the primary setup guy in Jim Leyland’s seven-man bullpen.

Octavio Dotel was signed to help out in the seventh and eighth innings, with Phil Coke and Daniel Schlereth providing left-handed options. That’s five seats filled.

You’d have to presume Collin Balester, brought over from Washington in a trade for Ryan Perry, has the inside track for the sixth spot, or why else would Detroit have given up a hard-thrower such as Perry? Balester is out of options, one of the reasons the Nationals traded him, another factor working in his favor.

Still, Balester needs to show in the spring he can be a reliable middle-inning reliever because the Tigers don’t have a lot invested in him.

That leaves just one vacancy, at least until Al Alburquerque returns from elbow surgery around the All-Star break.

Click HERE for the full story from CBSSports.com

View Comments
blog comments powered by Disqus
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,975 other followers