Detroit Tigers trade rumors: Are they done?

We waited, and Dave Dombrowski delivered.

We questioned, and Double D answered.

We wanted, he got.

Detroit Tigers General Manager Dave Dombrowski pulled the trigger on yet another trade deadline deal on Thursday, dealing two pitching prospects for Texas Rangers closer Joakim Soria.

The move comes as a result of a bullpen that has struggled mightily, boasting a scary 4.37 ERA. Throw closer Joe Nathan’s inconsistencies into the mix and the Tigers had no choice but to get a solid bullpen arm.

Soria will surely solidify the Tigers’ pen, and despite Dombrowski and Brad Ausmus standing by their closer Nathan, Soria could certainly close games if needed. He sports a solid line of 2.70 ERA, 0.87 WHIP, and a squeaky-clean 1.07 FIP. He strikes out more than 10 times as many as he walks and his SO/9 of 11.3 is tough to beat.

Compare that to Nathan’s line of 5.89 ERA/1.52 WHIP/4.18 FIP/ 2.44 K:BB/ 9.6 K/9 and it sure seems like the Tigers may have found a new closer.

Less of this, please

Nathan has certainly had his struggles

For argument’s sake, let’s say that Nathan rights the ship and remains as the Tigers’ closer. With Nathan performing, the bullpen now looks like this:

Closer: Nathan

Set-up man: Soria

7th inning: Joba Chamberlain, Al Alburquerque,

Lefties: Phil Coke, Ian Krol, Blaine Hardy

Long man: None on active roster, but Justin Miller and Robbie Ray are good options in AAA

While this looks pretty formidable, especially with the way Chamberlain has pitched lately, Tigers fans will be quick to point out one thing: the lack of a shut-down lefty.

Hardy has looked good, but has no experience. Krol is coming off a long DL stint. Coke belongs at an Iowa truck stop selling travel guides.

Sorry Phil. You actually almost had me believing in you again until you coughed up two runs on Tuesday, losing the game for Detroit in the process.

The question that now looms is whether the Tigers are done or not. Does Dombrowski feel the need to add a left-handed reliever such as Tony Sipp or Antonio Bastardo?

[Detroit Tigers trade rumors: Bullpen edition]

I feel that he does. With a week still left before the deadline, DD has more tricks up his sleeve. If the Tigers want to win it all (and trust me, it’s World Series ring or bust), they need a lefty that can get the big southpaw bats out with consistency. No Tigers fan wants to see Coke sprinting in from the bullpen to face Brandon Moss in the bottom of the 7th inning in game six of the ALCS.

We’ve all seen how that ends.

Dombrowski knows he needs a left-handed reliever, and unless he plans to promote Ray from the minors and move Drew Smyly back to the bullpen where he was so successful in 2013, he needs to make a trade.

And knowing Dombo, it will happen.

  • happygo_1

    You said, “Coke belongs at an Iowa truck stop selling travel guides.” LOL I see why you’re the senior editor here! LOL

    • Hugh Arenson

      Phil Coke has been riding way too long as the left hand stopper who never stops anyone. His performance the other night when he walked two consecutive batters on ten total pitches was pathetic. To know that he gets paid 1.8 million this year is a travesty.

      • Hugh Arenson

        It is time to get rid of Coke and maybe I could make the 1.8 mil. he is wasting.

  • Mark Young

    What about Tommy Milone with the Oakland Arthritics? He just got demoted to AAA and would have a chip on his shoulder to get back at them if he got on another contender.

  • Ellizar Abalos

    It’s hard to see those prospects go, but I believe DD and crew made the right choice in picking up Soria. Really excited to see this bullpen gel. Using Smyly during the playoffs as a shutdown lefty would not be a bad idea… remember Lincicum pitching against us as a shutdown closer? Well, I’m along for the ride and I just hope we end up in the World Series again :) Go Tigers!