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 Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville

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PostSubject: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Wed Nov 28, 2007 6:22 pm

11/28/2007 10:00 AM ET
Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville
Zumaya injury creates a sense of urgency for team at meetings
By Jason Beck / MLB.com


DETROIT -- It's not quite a matter of what's next with the Tigers, not while Kenny Rogers remains a free agent. Yet as the Tigers prepare to head to baseball's Winter Meetings with most of their offseason needs filled, Detroit would like to be tying up loose ends when it gets there, especially the one in the bullpen.

While Detroit's shortstop needs were filled the day after the World Series, and Todd Jones is back at closer, the long-running saga of Rogers and the Tigers seems to have reached the point where the ending is predictable. When Rogers dismissed Scott Boras as his agent and decided to represent himself in negotiations, it was seen as the precursor to a contract with Detroit, especially since Rogers reiterated a day earlier that he hoped to return to the Tigers.

Yet after the adventure of the past month, when Boras surprised the club by saying that Rogers would test the open market and Rogers entertained the idea of returning to the Rangers, Detroit isn't taking anything for granted.

"That would be our No. 1 desire," president/general manager Dave Dombrowski said of re-signing Rogers, "but we also can't count on that."

If Rogers is signed by the time Detroit's front-office group lands in Nashville, the Tigers could have a relatively short to-do list while they're there. If there's no deal yet, they'll have to spend at least part of their time taking care of that and keeping their options open, even while it looks increasingly unlikely that Rogers will pitch anywhere else.

The Tigers have made limited contact with agents for other free-agent pitchers, a list that includes Carlos Silva and reportedly Livan Hernandez as well. More likely than not, however, that won't be needed. If/when the Tigers sign Rogers, they're not expected to pursue another starter.

More than anything, the Tigers want one veteran starter who can shore up an otherwise young rotation that has had its battles with inconsistencies. Justin Verlander has put up 17 wins in both of his full Major League seasons, and his strong finish last year has set the tone for what could be a Cy Young campaign in 2008 if he continues his track of progression. In terms of pure stuff, he's unquestionably Detroit's staff ace, but the Tigers don't want to put the full pressure of such a role upon someone who will turn 25 next February.

Jeremy Bonderman, who started last Opening Day for Detroit, is barely older than Verlander, and he's coming off a fast-start, slow-finish season that included a sore elbow that Bonderman tried to pitch through down the stretch. Nate Robertson is the only 30-year-old starter currently with a rotation spot, but his ERA jumped by nearly a full run this year in a season that included a stint on the disabled list to rest a tired arm.

The Tigers are comfortable leaving their final rotation spot up to a Spring Training competition that will include Andrew Miller, the lanky young lefty whose delivery tweaks are hoped to give him more consistency in his command.

Considering the Tigers led the Majors in starting ERA when they went to the World Series in 2006, then fell back in the pack along with in the overall standings in 2007, Dombrowski has good reason to put his starting situation at the front of his attention.

"We'll kind of wait and we'll see," Dombrowski said. "We're in a position where we're constantly looking at our bullpen, but I think our first and foremost priority will be starting pitching. Our positional players are pretty well set, so that's not an area where we're looking at."

Unlike the rotation, the bullpen wasn't an area the Tigers had to emphasize during their organizational meetings and into the offseason until Joel Zumaya underwent right shoulder surgery in November, knocking him out of action until at least next July.

They won't be able to replace Zumaya, not at his fastball-firing form anyway, but they can add the depth at setup that they lacked at times last summer while Zumaya was on the disabled list with a ruptured tendon in his right middle finger. Jose Mesa, signed by the Tigers soon after last year's Winter Meetings, didn't work out and was released in June.

That kind of mistake likely won't be repeated, but the Tigers have traditionally been reluctant to sign setup and middle relievers to multi-year contracts off the open market. It might well take a long-term deal to snag a quality bullpen arm, which could give the Tigers some initiative in what are expected to be active trade talks across many teams next week.

"It's been a more active trade market all winter," Dombrowski said, "so I would expect that to continue. It seems like anytime you get into meetings like that, it makes conversations easier. There have been some big names discussed from what's been in the paper. I think it will be an active time."

How fast they can work out something with Rogers will probably be the key to how active the Tigers are, but there's little chance they'll be quiet.

"You're willing to talk to people. You see what ends up happening," Dombrowski said. "I don't think it's ever quiet. We'll be prepared."


“It takes pitching, hitting and defense. Any two can win. All three make you unbeatable.”    
–Joe Garagiola
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Wed Nov 28, 2007 6:50 pm

"The Tigers have made limited contact with agents for other free-agent
pitchers, a list that includes Carlos Silva and reportedly Livan
Hernandez as well. More likely than not, however, that won't be needed.
If/when the Tigers sign Rogers, they're not expected to pursue another
starter."


I still hope they go for an additional starting pitcher! We dont know if Kenny will hold up all season, the added strength would not hurt!


“It takes pitching, hitting and defense. Any two can win. All three make you unbeatable.”    
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Wed Nov 28, 2007 10:33 pm

Amen. Hernandez is nothing if not a verified workhorse!!

Funny how that article focuses on starting pitching with the headline it carries.....
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Wed Nov 28, 2007 11:30 pm

tigersaint wrote:
Amen. Hernandez is nothing if not a verified workhorse!!

Funny how that article focuses on starting pitching with the headline it carries.....

Livan Hernandez would be great, and I agree the title is bullpen but really need both. I think things will be flying at the meetings.


“It takes pitching, hitting and defense. Any two can win. All three make you unbeatable.”    
–Joe Garagiola


Last edited by on Fri Nov 30, 2007 10:12 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Wed Nov 28, 2007 11:47 pm

gogetemtigers wrote:
tigersaint wrote:
Amen. Hernandez is nothing if not a verified workhorse!!

Funny how that article focuses on starting pitching with the headline it carries.....

Livan Hernandez would be great, and I agree they title is bullpen but really need both. I think things will be flying at the meetings.

cross fingers pray
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Wed Nov 28, 2007 11:50 pm

Let's hope so!
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Wed Nov 28, 2007 11:52 pm

tigersaint wrote:
Amen. Hernandez is nothing if not a verified workhorse!!

Funny how that article focuses on starting pitching with the headline it carries.....

Kinda like the topics here!


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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Thu Nov 29, 2007 12:21 am

So true, except we don't get paid for it!!
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Fri Nov 30, 2007 3:25 pm

Let's hope they get someone !!!!! cross fingers
Or two.... or three.....
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Sat Dec 01, 2007 1:29 am

HOPE SO! GO GET EM TIGERS!
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Sat Dec 01, 2007 5:35 pm

Two quality relievers please....and another good starter wouldn't hurt much at all!!!!!
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Sat Dec 01, 2007 5:46 pm

YOU SAID IT TIGERSAINT! I AGREE! NOW< THE TIGERS GOT TO GO OUT AND DO IT!
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Sat Dec 01, 2007 5:46 pm

GO TIGERS!
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Mon Dec 03, 2007 9:14 am

Go out and DO IT!!
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Tue Dec 04, 2007 2:30 am

I agree 100 percent with you Tigersaint
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Tue Dec 04, 2007 10:09 am

Isn't that a little scary to you?
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Tue Dec 04, 2007 12:02 pm

I hope the Tigers bullpen will be a priority in DETROIT next year!


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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Tue Dec 04, 2007 1:07 pm

I just read the TIGERS are considering trading Jose Capellan to the Rockies for Denny Bautista......
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Tue Dec 04, 2007 3:56 pm

I scooped ya on this one brob!!

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAA!! lol2
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Tue Dec 04, 2007 3:59 pm

tigersaint wrote:
I scooped ya on this one brob!!

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAA!! lol2

Owe. Owe. Owe. That IS painful!


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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Tue Dec 04, 2007 7:35 pm

All it means is that I was busy fartin' around instead of working today.....
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Tue Dec 04, 2007 7:36 pm

And the TIGERS still haven't done much for the bullpen.
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Tue Dec 04, 2007 9:53 pm

tigersaint wrote:
And the TIGERS still haven't done much for the bullpen.

There's an article on Yahoo! sports saying this is a bad trade for us.

We entered this with the third highest scoring team in baseball, a decent rotation and no bullpen. We gave up pitching prospects, our #1 prospect, and got more offense. I'm not sure if I agree with that but I am worried a little about payroll.

We were like 9th last year and have already added Renteria and now we're adding Willis and Cabrera. While they will still come reasonably cheap they're going to take around $20MM between the two next year. Granderson and Verlander will need contracts soon, too. Can we really afford to keep the only 2 decent players on the team we actually developed.

It'll piss me off royally if we let those two go to keep players that are no better that we traded for instead of developed.

We're still fairly old - we better win quick. Who are our 2 best prospects now? Porcello (an 18 year old) and __________?

Our farm system is about depleted....


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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Tue Dec 04, 2007 9:54 pm

You mean totally depleted.
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Tue Dec 04, 2007 9:57 pm

SoulRat wrote:
You mean totally depleted.

We have Porcello...for now.


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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Tue Dec 04, 2007 9:57 pm

We won't really, he's probably one of the 3 minor leaguers but they can't say because he's PTBNL
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Tue Dec 04, 2007 10:01 pm

SoulRat wrote:
We won't really, he's probably one of the 3 minor leaguers but they can't say because he's PTBNL

No, the other 3 players are Burke Badenhop, Eulogio de la Cruz, and Dallas Trahern. All pitchers...


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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Tue Dec 04, 2007 10:04 pm

S'ok, they will trade him by the trade deadline.
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Tue Dec 04, 2007 11:29 pm

That's it.....get it off your chest.

Just let the anger out.....I'm here for ya!!
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PostSubject: Re: Tigers bullpen a priority in Nashville   Tue Dec 04, 2007 11:30 pm

Crying or Very sad I'm more disgusted than angry.
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