Mother Nature Helps Straighten Out Tigers’ Rotation

1 May

Duane Below is one of the most unselfish players on the Detroit Tigers' roster.

By James Nahikian

There is something to be said about a person who goes about his business with complete professionalism. Someone who is willing to adjust and be a team player. The Detroit Tigers have to be happy with their left handed pitcher, Duane Below. The southpaw was in a heated battle in Spring Training this March for the team’s fifth and final spot in the starting rotation. He ended up falling a little bit short to fellow lefty, Drew Smyly, who is now 1-0 with an impressive 1.23 ERA after four starts. Below was then sent to AAA Toledo. However, after a few injuries, he was called up just in time to be on the Opening Day roster. Below was sent to the bullpen, where he has pitched 12 innings allowing zero runs. Not bad for a guy who was “not good enough” at first to make the team. Due to his stellar work, and a few more injuries and struggles, Below was set to make his first start of the season on Monday night against the Kansas City Royals. Think his patience finally paid off? Nope. The game got rained out. And according to manager Jim Leyland, Below is now headed back to the bullpen. Rick Porcello will start tomorrow for the Tigers (On his normal days of rest), followed by Justin Verlander on Wednesday, and Doug Fister is expected to return from injury next week. The Tigers’ rotation will soon be at full strength and back in order, thanks to the extra day off due to rain.

The news did not seem to bother Below. Who is just excited to be in the big leagues. Every team needs a guy like this. Someone without an ego, and a guy who will literally do anything to help out his team. He never complains or makes excuses for himself, he simply just does what he is told. And I am sure that fans will love to see him back in the bullpen, as he has probably been the most productive on the team so far in that role.

The postponed game has been rescheduled for September 24th. A day that both teams had originally had off. If you had a ticket for tonight’s game, do not throw it away!! That ticket will serve as your entry for the game on September 24th.

James Nahikian blogs about the industry of sports. And specializes in articles about the Detroit Tigers, Major League Baseball and Bowling Green State University Athletics. Email him at And follow him on twitter @KingNahikian or facebook where you can find links to his articles and updates about future posts.



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