Sep 20, 2014; Bronx, NY, USA; Toronto Blue Jays relief pitcherCasey Janssen
(44) delivers a pitch during the ninth inning against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium. Toronto Blue Jays won 6-3. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports
2014 is officially in the books, and society is once again tasked with functioning for another 365 days. Once the ball drops in Times Square, everybody’s New Year’s Resolution are put into effect, though many of them are broken a few days into the new year.
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Let’s hope the Detroit Tigers declare a resolution and follow through with it: sign reliever Casey Janssen.
The Tigers have barely done anything to cure their bullpen problems, the very issue that has hindered them from further success the past few seasons.
Alex Wilson was acquired in the Rick Porcello–Yoenis Cespedes deal, and either Alfredo Simon, Kyle Lobstein, or Shane Greene will be a reliever this coming season. But that is not enough, the Tigers need a reliable foundation in their bullpen, and Casey Janssen is the man for the job.
The veteran right-hander is a free agent for the first time in his career after spending eight seasons with the Toronto Blue Jays. He’s also one of the remaining impact relievers on the market.
Janssen, 33, would bring some much needed versatility to the Tigers’ pen. In his career Janssen has been a starting pitcher, a set-up man, a closer, and a long reliever. Ausmus could insert him anywhere as needed and see the job completed
At this moment Detroit is relying heavily on Bruce Rondon, whom is coming off Tommy John Surgery, and the up-and-down Al Alburquerque. It would be wise to lower the amount of reliability that has been placed on those two. Some stability would be nice to have.
The owner of a career 3.53 ERA and 90 saves over the past three seasons, it’s though to find a reason not to sign Janssen. And really, who else is there? Anybody that would have made a difference is no longer available.
Signing Janssen would give the Tigers a plethora of options; it’s evident Joe Nathan will once again be the team’s closer, but from there everything is really up in the air. This one singular move gives the Tigers options, which is exactly what they need as lack of flexibility killed the team last season.
Sure, he had a tough 2014 but his career shows that he is reliable. And Janssen is not that big of a gamble either, as he will likely command around five million dollars per year. It’s a low payout for good results.
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