Jun 16, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Astros relief pitcher Jose Veras (41) pitches against the Chicago White Sox during the ninth inning at Minute Maid Park. The Astros won 5-4. Mandatory Credit: Thomas Campbell-USA TODAY Sports
There was talk that maybe the Detroit Tigers would add another bullpen arm on Wednesday, but when the 4 PM trade deadline came and went without the team announcing another move.
Not that this year’s deadline was without action. The Tigers addressed their two biggest positions of need with two solid deals. Jose Veras was brought in to solidify the late innings – Jim Leyland now has his desired 7-8-9 combination in Veras, Drew Smyly, and Joaquin Benoit – and provide much needed support to a porous bullpen. And, of course, there was the bigger trade that brings in 23 year old Jose Iglesias to hopefully solidify the shortstop position for the next six years.
Left handed reliever Javier Lopez was the rumored potential target on Wednesday and, although nothing ultimately materialized on that front before the non-waiver deadline, there’s a possibility that the Tigers could still make a move for him. He’s apparently earning $4.25 million this year – a hefty sum for a LOOGY – which makes him a possibility as a waiver trade target. Remember that players can still be traded – until August 31 – so long as they first pass through trade waivers.
The team could possibly use another reliever, but with Rick Porcello (probably) heading to the bullpen for the playoffs, they’ll need one fewer bullpen arm than is currently on the roster. Benoit, Smyly, Veras, Bruce Rondon, Porcello, Phil Coke, and Darin Downs seem like the likely names to fill out the October bullpen with Al Alburquerque also having a shot. The bullpen no longer appears to be a troubesome spot.