Detroit Tigers: 5 roster battles to watch in spring training

Toronto Blue Jays v Detroit Tigers
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2. Bullpen

There are many spots up for grabs in the Detroit Tigers bullpen this season. With the departures of Andrew Chafin, Joe Jimenez, and Gregory Soto, there's at least three open spots. The Tigers bullpen probably won't be as good as it was last season, but it could still be decent.

One name to watch is somebody I highlighted recently, and that's RHP Trey Wingenter. The former Padre has nasty stuff, but hasn't been able to stay healthy the past few years. This may be his last chance to prove that he's healthy and can still hang in the big leagues. Look for him to be extra motivated.

The left-handed reliever role will be an interesting battle as well. Other than Tyler Alexander, the Tigers don't have a designed lefty in the bullpen for the 2023 season. Look for minor league signee Chasen Shreve, prospect Adam Wolf and trade acquisition Jake Higginbotham (Joe Jimenez trade) to compete for that spot.

The rest of the bullpen features names like Brendan White, Rule 5 pick Mason Englert, and some minor league signees duking it out for a spot. There are still some familiar names like Alex Lange, Jose Cisnero, and Jason Foley that are all but guarenteed spots.

There's also the closer's role that's up for grabs, but I think A.J. Huch will go with a closer-by-committee, at least to start the season. Nobody on the team currently has experience as a closer, so Hinch will probably play the ninth inning based on matchups and thinks like that.

The bullpen battles should be fun to watch. It'll be interesting to see who comes out on top.