AL All-Star closer Jose Valverde prepares a new dance for the masses

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American League manager Ron Washington said Monday that Detroit’s Jose Valverde will be his choice to close out a lead Tuesday night, and Valverde spent all day in front of a mirror rehearsing a new celebration upon hearing the move.

Personally, I’m hoping for a new take on the Ickey Shuffle, though for what it’s worth, Valverde’s recent moves suggest he’s been studying Russian dance of late.

The Tigers decline Anibal Sanchez’s 2018 option

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From the “this does not surprise us in the very least” department, Tigers GM Al Avila announced today that the club is declining its $16 million option on right-hander Anibal Sanchez.

Sanchez had a terrible year in 2017, going 3-7 with a 6.41 ERA in 2017. That’s a long slide down from his 2013 season, in which he won the AL ERA title, going 14-8 and posting an ERA of 2.57 in the first year of his five-year, $80 million deal. Since then he’s gone 28-35 with a 5.15 ERA. He never started 30 games or more over the course of the contract.

The declination of the option does come with a nice parting gift for Sanchez: a $5 million buyout. Which is pretty dang high for a buyout, but that’s how the Tigers rolled three or four years ago.