Detroit Tigers News

Detroit Tigers need another setup option

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Jun 6, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers manager Brad Ausmus (7) takes the ball to relieve relief pitcher Blaine Hardy (36) in front of umpire Joe West in the seventh inning against the Los Angeles Angels at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
Jun 6, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers manager Brad Ausmus (7) takes the ball to relieve relief pitcher Blaine Hardy (36) in front of umpire Joe West in the seventh inning against the Los Angeles Angels at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports /
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Detroit Tigers
Jun 8, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers relief pitcher Arcenio Leon (66) pitches in the sixth inning against the Los Angeles Angels at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports /

Detroit Tigers fans have seen the team’s bullpen depth improve in 2017. That being said, another setup reliever certainly wouldn’t hurt the team as June rolls along.

Detroit Tigers general manager Al Avila’s under-the-radar bullpen additions have so far proved to be beneficial to the team so far in 2017.

Former Rule 5 draft pick Daniel Stumpf and the hard-throwing Arcenio Leon have both provided the team with added options as early season struggles upset the apple cart in the bullpen.

Bullpen mainstays from 2016 like Bruce Rondon and Kyle Ryan struggled early, as did newcomers Joe Jimenez and William Cuevas.

Stumpf and Leon, along with Warwick Saupold have completely changed the look of the Tigers bullpen.

Elsewhere, Justin Wilson is thriving in the closer’s role after taking over from Francisco Rodriguez.

With Leon and Stumpf still settling into the Majors and Rodriguez working to find his form again, the Tigers bullpen has become rather predictable.

If the starter is knocked out early, Saupold comes in.

If there’s a jam that could decide the game in the sixth or seventh, that’s when Shane Greene enters the game.

The former starter has been utilized somewhat similar to Andrew Miller in the sense that he’s always throwing in key situations, and he sometimes logs more than an inning in the process.

While Greene (28 strikeout percentage, 2.69 FIP) has found considerable success in this role, he isn’t pitching as much later in games as Justin Wilson’s setup man.

Most of the time, this is fine as the most important outs aren’t always in the eighth inning.

Still, it leaves Alex Wilson as the only setup option.

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