So, Rogers is back. And he did, oh, pretty fair in his start last night.
The news in Tigertown isn't Roger's winning the duel of 200 game winners with John Smoltz, though, it's the Maroth trade (It was a little unclear, at first, what the Tigers got back in return. I took that to mean the always intriguing “player to be named later” was in play. Looks like I was right. So, basically, they get a minor leaguer back.). Interestingly enough, I was reading the Free Press's sports page, specifically this piece, and thinking about the various starting pitchers and their place in the rotation, when the news scrolled across my screen. Timely.
So, looks like, as the Rosenberg column says, with Maroth gone, Durbin's going to the bullpen while Miller remains a starter. Since I have this irrational fear of a Kerry Wood situation, that's not how I'd do it – I'd rather he spent a long, long time in the minors while the team has enough starters to not need him to start so quickly - but I can't complain.
With Rogers back, moving Durbin should help up the relief pitching considerably. It's been inexplicably weak this season. The Tigers have been getting by on quality starts and slugging their way past problems this year and that's been the big reason they've been struggling so much. It goes deeper than not having Zumaya, either. Pitchers who were solid last year like Rodney just aren't getting it done this year. And the roller-coaster ride that is Todd Jones has hit another valley. Durbin's presence as a middle reliever should help solidify things which is sorely needed if we're going to have a repeat of last year's magical postseason.