Detroit Tigers: Week 8 Heroes and Zeroes
By Matt Pelc
May 27, 2015; Oakland, CA, USA; Detroit Tigers relief pitcher Alex Wilson (30) pitches the ball against the Oakland Athletics during the first inning at O.co Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
#4 Hero: Alex Wilson
Should Yoenis Cespedes hit the road after this season, the Detroit Tigers may still “win the trade” because of the throw-in pieces.
The Tigers balked at trading Cespedes straight up for Rick Porcello, but when the Boston Red Sox threw in Alex Wilson and Gabe Speier they could not make the trade quicker.
Playing in low-A ball, Speier is still a long way from the big leagues, but he’s doing all he needs to do in West Michigan, posting a 2.70 ERA in 10 innings with a 1.100 WHIP.
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Meanwhile Wilson has been a life-saver this season, giving the Tigers a lift in long relief when their starters get shelled. He, of course, was the starter in the “bullpen game” on Wednesday, going three strong, scoreless innings in Detroit’s most recent victory to date.
A few days later, when Shane Greene was blown apart, Wilson calmly stepped in and went 3.2 innings, holding the Angels scoreless and hitless as the Tigers tried to mount a failed comeback.
In three appearances last week, spanning 7.2 innings, Wilson allowed just one base runner via a walk. He has allowed runs in only three of 14 outings this year and held the opponents scoreless in 10 of his last 11 games.
Wilson is symbolic of the bullpen in general. Aside from Joba Chamberlain‘s WHIP (despite a misleading solid ERA), the bullpen has unbelievably been a bright spot both throughout last week and the season thus far for Detroit.
Next: It's Not Easy Being Greene