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A sometimes-irreverent look at Detroit's Boys of Summer, the Tigers, as they try to return to the top of the American League Central.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

REPORT: Tigers recall contract of LHP Blaine Hardy

The Toledo Blade's John Wagner reported Saturday night that left-handed reliever Blaine Hardy had been called up to the big leagues after the Mud Hens' game.

Detroit's bullpen was taxed Saturday night, as four different relievers combined to throw 83 pitches over a three-inning span, as what was once an 11-1 game turn into a 12-9 win.

A non-roster invitee to spring training, the left-handed Hardy has appeared in 20 games for the Toledo Mud Hens, posting a 2.68 ERA with 53 strikeouts and 13 walks in 47 innings pitched. He gives the Tigers something they've lacked since Luke Putkonen went on the disabled list — a long man.

No immediate indication was given who might be leaving the Tigers' roster to make room for Hardy.

There are several options.

If it's as a replacement for an as-of-yet undisclosed injury to any one of the Tigers relievers, then the move is self-explanatory. Ian Krol, who went 1 1/3 innings for his first big-league save, said he was battling through soreness in his biceps tendon, but that it was not serious enough to keep him from pitching tomorrow.

Corey Knebel is the low man on the totem pole. He's made six appearances, posting an ERA of 6.75 and a WHIP of 1.650. He's also one of the three relievers who did not pitch, so it's not likely to be Knebel, if this is just a move to bring a fresh arm in.

Lefty Phil Coke, always the object of scrutiny, had posted a 1.80 ERA in six appearances so far this month before Saturday, when he gave up three runs in the eighth inning on three hits.

Evan Reed has posted a 8.22 ERA in his eight appearances since May 22, including one earned run allowed Saturday, when he couldn't get out of the seventh inning. That span started a day after the Detroit Police Department requested a warrant from the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office in an ongoing sexual assault investigation involving Reed.

[UPDATE: The Tigers called up Hardy Sunday morning, and optioned Knebel to Triple-A Toledo.]

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