Tigers place closer Joe Nathan on the disabled list

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Joe Nathan was hoping to bounce back from a miserable 2014 season and show he’s still a closer-caliber reliever at age 40, but instead he’s already headed to the Tigers’ disabled list with a strained elbow.

Nathan picked up a one-out save on Opening Day by striking out former teammate Torii Hunter thanks to umpire Joe West’s controversial call. Last season he blew seven of 42 save chances and posted a 4.81 ERA, getting booed off the mound in Detroit several times.

Detroit has another experienced closer in Joakim Soria ready to step into ninth-inning duties and by the time Nathan is healthy there’s a chance manager Brad Ausmus won’t want him back in the closer role.