Detroit Tigers' Bullpen Implodes...Surprise, Surprise

Austin DrakeSenior Analyst IAugust 5, 2008

Stop! Stop! I beg you, please stop the torture!

A regular scene for Tiger fans happened again tonight (8/5/08). The bullpen blew the game for Detroit, once again in Chicago.

As a diehard Tiger fan, this is the biggest emotional roller coaster I have ever experienced. Just as you fool yourself into believing that the Tigers have a big enough lead heading into the late innings, in one blink of the eye, the opponent is on top again.

Detroit's relievers have 19 of the 57 losses this season and have given up 32 home runs. Also, the Tigers' multiple closers are 21 of 34 in save opportunities. The average ERA in the Detroit bullpen is 3.95 with a record of 17-19.

Jim Leyland has changed closers three times this season, going from Todd Jones to Fernando Rodney and now to Joel Zumaya, who, on his first night as the official closer, blew a save in the 14th inning versus the White Sox.

A trade in late July brought Kyle Farnsworth back to Detroit, and he has done everything but pan out for the Tigers. Farnsworth has pitched three-and-a-third innings, and has given up four earned runs and three home runs with a blown save.

Now that I have seen the stats, I am even more depressed than when I started. But, I just wish this could mean the promotion of Ryan Perry or Rick Porcello to the big league.

In the offseason, the Tigers obviously need to address the problems in the bullpen, maybe signing Francisco "K-Rod" Rodriguez if he does not re-sign with the Angels.

I just hope sooner rather than later I can believe that a three-run lead will be plenty to win the game. I almost expect every reliever in the bullpen to blow the lead and I believe that Jim Leyland feels the same way. And that is simply not healthy for a team.

Tigers Pitching Stats