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Where the Tigers’ new closer has been extremely successful is when games are on the line and he has recently had a string of perfect innings, most of which came with his team winning by just one run.
Tigers 101 looks at how Soria is doing it. We are seeing just what we expected from him and most of those results are coming from him having a clearly defined role.
The bullpen other than Soria was not good this past week, but should the Tigers rush out to sign a high-priced and questionable arm for the pen in Rafael Soriano? The former Washington National has success but will he be better than who the Tigers currently have? Think of it as when the Tigers brought in Jim Johnson last year because, well, why not? He was terrible.
Finally we take a look at the Tigers’ week that was and who’s up and who’s down.
Revitalized Joakim Soria Effectively Slamming Door in Ninth Inning for Detroit Tigers – Max DeMara, Tigers 101
"Considering the ineffectiveness Tigers’ fans saw from Soria late last season, all of this might be hard to believe, but after the game, Brad Ausmus maintained that remembering anything about Soria in a Tigers uniform from 2014 might be the biggest mistake.How big, exactly, has the difference been? “Night and day,” Brad Ausmus said after Saturday’s game.“I don’t think we ever saw the real Joakim Soria, I think this is probably more the real Joakim Soria; this is the guy we traded for,” Ausmus commented.It’s hard for plenty to remember that the pitcher who struggled down the stretch to a 4.91 ERA wasn’t the same Soria who pitched consistently for the Texas Rangers before being dealt to Detroit last July, but injuries intervened, and that might have been a big reason the Tigers’ bullpen struggled as badly as it did.Now, Soria is able to mix his pitches and can count on some long-awaited command from his fastball, something Ausmus thinks has been perhaps the biggest key to the early turnaround in 2015."
"Might the Tigers sign Rafael Soriano? They might. I doubt they will, but they have proven they are willing to take fliers on guys during the season before. (See Joel Hanrahan, Jim Johnson, 2014.)On the down side, Soriano is 35 years old and had an atrocious second half in 2014. Here are his 2014 numbers:First half: 0.97 ERA, .153/.448 opp. BA/OPS, 0.811 WHIPSecond half: 6.48 ERA, .305/.864 OPS, 1.600 WHIP.Notice any troubling trends there?Soriano is not going to swoop into Comerica Park, rack up 25 saves and be carried off the field following Game 7 of the World Series. He’s just not. So please, let’s pick a different horse to beat dead for now.If the Tigers sign him, we will revisit the issue then. But for now, this is a Soriano-free zone. Deal? Deal."
Detroit Tigers Weekly Recap: Who’s trending up and trending down – Jack Reynolds, iSportsWeb
"Alfredo “the Big Pasta” Simon continued his impressive start to the season with yet another win this week. On Saturday versus the Cleveland Indians, Simon threw six innings of one run baseball and more importantly helped stop the Tigers four game losing streak. After giving up four runs in his first start of the season, Simon has only given up three runs in his last three starts, which spans 22 innings. He leads the team in ERA with a daunting 1.65. So far it seems Simon has proven all of his doubters wrong that said he would not transition well from the NL to the AL. His four wins in four starts is evidence enough that the Simon is fitting into the AL just fine.Rajai Davis established his spot on the trending up list for the second straight week due to his stellar play. Davis hit .444 this past week and is truly a spark plug for this team. He has separated himself from platoon centerfielder Anthony Gose and should continue to get the bulk of the playing time. He did leave Sunday’s game early after coming up lame, while running to first on a single. Thankfully for the Tigers, early reports are that it is not serious and he is listed as day-to-day. Davis’ health will continue to be essential for the Tigers as he has been such an important player early this season, getting on base and stealing bases to set up the bigger bats in the lineup with RBI opportunities."