Tag: Al Alburquerque

Al Alburquerque

Tigers, Al Alburquerque avoid arbitration with a one-year deal

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The Tigers and reliever Al Alburquerque have avoided arbitration, agreeing on a one-year deal worth $1.725 million, per WAPT’s Mike Perchick. Alburquerque had filed for $2.05 million while the Tigers filed for $1.375 million.

Alburquerque, 28, posted a 2.51 ERA with a 63/21 K/BB ratio in 57 1/3 innings last season. He’ll be eligible for arbitration for the 2016 and ’17 season as well, his third and fourth years of eligibility, respectively.

54 players exchange figures with their clubs following today’s deadline

Lorenzo Cain
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Today was the deadline for teams and players to exchange salary figures in an attempt to avoid arbitration hearings beginning February 1 and ending on the 21st. Players and teams can still work out a deal over the next two weeks.

Here’s a rundown of all of the filings from the players and their respective teams:

[Update: The original count had 56 players but two players were incorrectly left on the list after avoiding arbitration.]

Angels (3)

  • David Freese (3B) filed for $7.6 million, team filed for $5.25 million (source)
  • Matt Joyce (OF) filed for $5.2 million, team filed for $4.2 million (source)
  • Garrett Richards (SP) filed for $3.8 million, team filed for $2.4 million (source)

Astros (2)

  • Dexter Fowler (OF) filed for $10.8 million, team filed for $8.5 million (source)
  • Marwin Gonzalez (SS) filed for $1.4 million, team filed for $900,000 (source, source)

Athletics (4)

  • Fernando Abad (RP) filed for $1.225 million, team filed for $850,000 (source)
  • Tyler Clippard (RP) filed for $8.85 million, team filed for $7.775 million (source)
  • Jarrod Parker (SP) filed for $1.7 million, team filed for $850,000 (source)
  • Eric Sogard (2B) filed for $1.425 million, team filed for $900,000 (source)

Blue Jays (2)

  • Josh Donaldson (3B) filed for $5.75 million, team filed for $4.3 million (source)
  • Danny Valencia (3B) filed for $1.675 million, team filed for $1.25 million (source)

Braves (1)

  • Mike Minor (SP) filed for $5.6 million, team filed for $5.1 million (source)

Cardinals (1)

  • Jon Jay (OF) filed for $5.0 million, team filed for $4.1 million (source)

Cubs (1)

  • Pedro Strop (RP) filed for $3.0 million, team filed for $2.0 million (source)

Diamondbacks (2)

  • Addison Reed (RP) filed for $5.6 million, team filed for $4.7 million (source)
  • Mark Trumbo (OF) filed for $6.9 million, team filed for $5.3 million (source)

Giants (4)

  • Brandon Belt (1B) filed for $4.5 million, team filed for $3.0 million (source)
  • Gregor Blanco (OF) filed for $4.0 million, team filed for $3.3 million (source)
  • Brandon Crawford (SS) filed for $3.95 million, team filed for $2.4 million (source)
  • Casey McGehee (3B) filed for $5.4 million, team filed for $4.0 million (source)

Mariners (1)

  • Tom Wilhelmsen (RP) filed for $2.2 million, team filed for $1.4 million (source)

Marlins (3)

  • Michael Dunn (RP) filed for $2.6 million, team filed for $2.355 million (source)
  • Mat Latos (SP) filed for $10.4 million, team filed for $9.4 million (source)
  • David Phelps (SP) filed for $1.875 million, team filed for $1.4 million (source)

Mets (2)

  • Lucas Duda (1B) filed for $4.7 million, team filed for $3.75 million (source)
  • Jenrry Mejia (RP) filed for $3.0 million, team filed for $2.1 million (source)

Nationals (1)

  • Jerry Blevins (RP) filed for $2.4 million, team filed for $2.2 million (source)

Orioles (6)

  • Zach Britton (RP) filed for $4.2 million, team filed for $2.2 million (source)
  • Alejandro De Aza (OF) filed for $5.65 million, team filed for $5 million (source)
  • Ryan Flaherty (IF) filed for $1.5 million, team filed for $900,000 (source)
  • Miguel Gonzalez (SP) filed for $3.95 million, team filed for $2.5 million (source)
  • Bud Norris (SP) filed for $10.25 million, team filed for $7.5 million (source)
  • Steve Pearce (1B) filed for $5.4 million, team filed for $2 million (source)

Pirates (3)

  • Pedro Alvarez (1B) filed for $5.75 million, team filed for $5.25 million (source)
  • Neil Walker (2B) filed for $9.0 million, team filed for $8.0 million (source)
  • Vance Worley (RP) filed for $2.45 million, team filed for $2.0 million (source)

Rangers (1)

  • Mitch Moreland (DH) filed for $3.35 million, team filed for $2.75 million (source)

Red Sox (2)

  • Wade Miley (SP) filed for $4.3 million, team filed for $3.4 million (source)
  • Daniel Nava (OF) filed for $2.25 million, team filed for $1.3 million (source)

Reds (3)

  • Aroldis Chapman (RP) filed for $8.7 million, team filed for $6.65 million (source)
  • Todd Frazier (3B) filed for $5.7 million, team filed for $3.9 million (source)
  • Devin Mesoraco (C) filed for $3.6 million, team filed for $2.45 million (source)

Rockies (2)

  • Adam Ottavino (RP) filed for $1.475 million, team filed for $1.0 million (source)
  • Wilin Rosario (C) filed for $3.3 million, team filed for $2.8 million (source)

Royals (7)

  • Lorenzo Cain (OF) filed for $3.6 million, team filed for $2 million (source)
  • Danny Duffy (SP) filed for $3.0 million, team filed for $1.75 million (source)
  • Jarrod Dyson (OF) filed for $1.6 million, team filed for $900,000 (source)
  • Kelvin Herrera (RP) filed for $1.9 million, team filed for $1.15 million (source)
  • Greg Holland (RP) filed for $9 million, team filed for $6.65 million (source)
  • Eric Hosmer (1B) filed for $6.7 million, team filed for $4.6 million (source)
  • Mike Moustakas (3B) filed for $3.1 million, team filed for $1.85 million (source)

Tigers (1)

  • Al Alburquerque (RP) filed for $2.05 million, team filed for $1.375 million (source)

Twins (2)

  • Brian Duensing (RP) filed for $3.1 million, team filed for $2.4 million (source)
  • Jordan Schafer (OF) filed for $1.7 million, team filed for $1.4 million (source)

Last year, 40 players exchanged figures with their respective teams.

The Orioles had the two biggest disparities, ending up $3.4 million apart with Steve Pearce ($5.4M vs. $2M) and $2.75 million apart with Bud Norris ($10.25M vs. $7.5M).

Brad Ausmus talks about his bullpen decisions. Short version: he wouldn’t change a thing.

Brad Ausmus
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Brad Ausmus has given his first full-length interview since the Tigers bowed out of the playoffs last week amid two bullpen meltdowns in three games.

Lynn Henning of the Detroit News asked him about his bullpen decisions. Specifically, only using a very effective Anibal Sanchez for two innings and 30 pitches in Game 2 and by not using Al Alburquerque at all in a series where Joba Chamberlain and Joakim Soria melted down in the eighth inning on two occasions.

As for Sanchez, Ausmus cites the fact that he had only pitched a single inning since coming back from an extended stay on the DL prior to the end of the season and that the plan was always to limit him to two innings at a time. Ausmus says that he’d make the decision if he had to do it again. As for Alburquerque, he was never an option to help in those eighth inning disasters. Why?

“No, for me, Albie, who had a great year, his best place is in the sixth or seventh inning,” Ausmus said. “There’s really only one time we might have used him, in Game 2, and we had Sanchie.”

I’m not sure what’s more grating: that Anibal Sanchez’s nickname is “Sanchie” or that Ausmus is so locked in on set roles for his relievers that he’d not consider using one of his more effective ones to stop an implosion because it just happens to not be the inning which, God apparently, has deemed it to be his.

Brad Ausmus doesn’t want to make the tough calls

Brad Ausmus
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When the Tigers acquired reliever Joakim Soria from the Rangers on July 23, giving up two of their top 10 prospects to do so, it seemed obvious he should take over as Detroit’s closer. After all, he had a 2.70 ERA at the time and was 17-for-19 saving games for Texas. Nathan had a 5.89 ERA and had blown five saves in 25 chances.

Instead, manager Brad Ausmus stuck with Nathan. It worked out fine. Soria stumbled out of the gate for the Tigers and then suffered a strained oblique that cost him a month. Nathan’s ERA was much improved the rest of the way, though his WHIP actually went up a bit (Nathan had a 5.61 ERA and a 35/14 K/BB ratio in 33 2/3 innings in the first half and a 3.70 ERA and a 19/15 K/BB ratio in 24 1/3 innings in the second half).

After Soria returned, Ausmus never wavered, not even to install Soria as the eighth-inning guy over Joba Chamberlain. While most focused on Nathan’s struggles, Chamberlain had gone from posting a 2.63 ERA in the first half to a 4.97 ERA afterwards. He had a 40/12 K/BB ratio in 37 2/3 innings prior to the All-Star break and a 19/12 K/BB ratio in 25 1/3 innings afterwards. At least in the second half, the eighth inning had proven more problematic for the Tigers than the ninth.

Related: Tigers give up four in eighth, lose 7-6 to Orioles in ALDS Game 2

Yet Ausmus refused to try anything different. Maybe Soria hadn’t quite returned to form following the oblique injury, but Al Alburquerque remained criminally underused. Alburquerque had a 2.51 ERA this season, lowering his career mark to 2.82. He allowed two runs over 18 2/3 innings in August and September. He held right-handers to a .190/.281/.237 line and was still plenty respectable against lefties (.245/.311/.369). Yet his last three appearances this year came in games the Tigers lost a combined 28-9. He hasn’t pitched in the ALDS.

It’s not just the eighth inning, either. On two occasions against the Orioles, Aumsus has seemed to defer to his players against his better judgment. In Game 1, he started Davis in spite of a groin injury that had him looking more like a 40-year-old catcher than a fleet-footed center fielder. There’s no way Davis should have played (Davis started again today, then exited in the fourth because of his injury). In the sixth inning today, he sent Justin Verlander back out to the mound, only to pull him after a leadoff single (that should have been caught by Davis’s replacement, Ezequiel Carrera). If Verlander was one mistake away from coming out, why send him out to make that mistake?

Brad Ausmus’s flaw has nothing to do with intelligence. He just seems overly resistant to change. He doesn’t like tweaking his lineups: Rajai Davis has bigger platoon issues than any right-handed hitter in the game; he’s a quality leadoff man against lefties, but he really shouldn’t be starting against righties at all. Ausmus hits him ninth on a full-time basis regardless. Ian Kinsler had a .270 OBP in the second half, yet remained the everyday leadoff man. Ausmus decided it made more sense to win or lose with Chamberlain in the eighth than it did to try anything different. And now the Tigers’ season appears nearly over because of it.

Last year, Tigers manager Jim Leyland installed career infielder Jhonny Peralta, returning from his 50-game PED suspension, as his left fielder with three games left to go in the regular season. When Austin Jackson, a leadoff man all season long, struggled in the postseason, Leyland suddenly dropped him in the order in the ALCS and started hitting Torii Hunter first and Miguel Cabrera second.

Ausmus, still a rookie manager, lacks that boldness at this stage of his career. Down 2-0 to the Orioles, He’ll probably go in a different direction given a lead in the eighth inning of Game 3 on Sunday, but only because he’s really been left with no other choice (Anibal Sanchez almost surely will be that eighth-inning guy unless David Price can get through the inning himself). I still imagine Ausmus will turn into a strong manager in time, but 2014 has been a learning experience for him. It’s too bad for the Tigers that they didn’t get a year with Leyland at the helm and Ausmus as a bench coach before making the transition.

And That Happened: Tuesday’s scores and highlights

Henderson Alvarez
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Marlins 1, Rays 0: Henderson Alvarez tosses his third shutout of the season. Last year the league leaders in that category — Justin Masterson and Bartolo Colon — had three for the whole season. Heck, the league leader had three in five of the past 11 seasons.

Nationals 7, Phillies 0: Ryan Zimmerman had two doubles and handled the only two balls hit to him in left field cleanly in his debut as an outfielder. Jordan Zimmermann pitched eight scoreless innings. Larry Bowa probably blames Dom Brown and then his head probably exploded.

Indians 5, Red Sox 3: Five straight for Cleveland, with the big hit coming on Michael Bourn’s two-run double in the seventh. The Indians, considered dead not too long ago, have made up six games in the AL Central standings since May 18 and trail first-place Detroit by four and a half games.

Mariners 7, Braves 5: Homers done it. Stefen Romero hit a three-run pinch-hit homer in the fourth to tie it at five and then John Buck hit a two-run shot in the seventh. Buck had three hits in all. His homer was his fourth against Atlanta since the start of 2013. He joins Mike Redmond on the Mount Rushmore of Mostly Pedestrian Catchers Who Inexplicably Kill The Braves. Not sure who the other two are, but I’m sure they exist.

Athletics 5, Yankees 2:  A three-run 10th kicked off by Brandon Moss’ second homer of the game gives this one to the A’s. The key to the win, according to Sean Doolittle, is your typical Oakland A’s Moneyball techno-spreadsheet explanation:

“The way the guys were swinging in the 10th inning, it was like they could smell the victory and found a way to get it done,” the A’s reliever said. “That’s typical Oakland A’s baseball.”

God, dude. Get your head out of you computer screen and watch some baseball.

Reds 8, Giants 3: Four straight for the Reds. Four errors for the Giants, mostly caused by Bill Hamilton getting in Tim Lincecum and Hector Sanchez’s heads.

Blue Jays 5, Tigers 3: A five-run ninth for Toronto, four of which were charged to Joe Nathan, though three scored on a Brett Lawrie homer given up by Al Alburquerque. Anyone got John Hiller’s phone number?

Orioles 8, Rangers 3: Nelson Cruz always hit well in Arlington and he did so again last night hitting a three-run shot to give him his 21st homer of the season. Adam Jones added four hits and a homer.

Royals 8, Cardinals 7: Kolten Wong’s grand slam ended a 20-inning scoreless streak for St. Louis, but Eric Hosmer’s tie-breaking RBI single in the ninth extended their losing streak to three. The Cards have lost six of seven overall.

Astros 7, Angels 2: Jon Singleton made his major league debut with a couple of strikeouts a couple of errors and his first-ever homer. He also walked with the bases loaded to give him two-RBI on the game. Bud Norris thinks Singleton should’ve gotten four RBI. It would have been better for everyone else, Norris says.

Cubs 2, Mets 1: One in the eighth and one in the ninth for Chicago. The run in the ninth came on a Nate Schierholtz single, for the Cubs’ first walkoff win of the year. Chris Coghlan’s solo shot accounted for the other run. The Mets had a lot of chances to score more than just their one run but failed to capitalize.

Twins 6, Brewers 4: Josh Willingham stays hot, hitting a three-run homer. Since coming off the DL on May 26 he’s hit four of ’em. Also: a dude fell the hell out of a TGI Friday’s and into the bullpen, so that was special.

Diamondbacks 4, Rockies 2: Back to back homers for Nick Evans and Chris Owings. Evans was filling in for Paul Goldschmidt, who was given the night off. It was Evans’ first homer since 2011.

White Sox 4, Dodgers 1: Jose Abreu went deep again and drove in three overall. Hector Noesi got his first win in 19 starts.

Pirates 4, Padres 1: Neil Walker and Pedro Alvarez hit two-run homers and Gerrit Cole and four relievers combined to allow one run. A day after a nine-inning game between these two teams lasted over four hours, this one was done in 2:43.