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How’d He Get That Number? Joe Nathan Owes Luke Putkonen Dinner

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By: Jeff Riger
@riger1984

After Detroit announced the signing of closer Joe Nathan, 39, on Wednesday, I had a chance to catch up with the former Tiger-killer.

Nathan is well aware of the expectations and that’s part of the reason he wanted to come to Detroit

Nathan spent time discussing his age, his success against the Tigers over his lifetime and what it feels like to now be in Detroit after spending so much of his career with the Twins.

Of course we had to get to the bottom of a couple of important things as well…

Will Nathan be the kind of closer to face the cameras and microphones after a blown save?

“This game is about failing,” Nathan said. “You know if you’re going to be able and sit there and talk to reporters during the good times, you better to be able to take the heat during the bad times-I always have been pretty good about having a bad memory and forgetting about what I did, good or bad.”

Nathan will also be sporting the number 36 in Detroit, digits he’s had his entire career. How did he get Luke Putkonen, the previous owner of the number to give it to him?

“I still have yet to meet him and thank him for allowing me to wear this; we didn’t even have a conversation here, with what number until I saw the jersey. I’m glad I have it, I’ve had it for a while so hopefully I get a chance to take him out to dinner and thank him properly.” Nathan said.

I wonder if Luke knows yet? He should order the most expensive thing on the menu when he find out.

Check out the entire Nathan interview above.

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