Thursday, July 31, 2008
Tigers put Jones on DL, await Farnsworth to take his place
CLEVELAND -- Detroit reliever Todd Jones was placed on the 15-day disabled list on Thursday as the Tigers eagerly waited for Kyle Farnsworth to join them.
Jones, who recently lost his closer's job, has inflammation in his right shoulder. He has been bothered by pain for six weeks but refused to blame it on his recent struggles. Before going on the DL, Jones, was 1-1 with an 11.23 ERA and three blown saves in seven tries in his last 13 outings.
The 40-year-old Jones had an MRI exam before the Tigers lost 9-4 to the Indians in the finale of a four-game series. He's waiting for the test results.
"What I do know is that I've been hurting for a few weeks and I don't want to try and pitch and hurt my team," said Jones, who has 319 career saves. "If I can get this cleared up, whatever it is, then hopefully I can get back and pitch the way I can and still help this team. I'm on the DL. I don't like that, but I will stay with the team, do what I can behind the scenes to help out."
He pitched 1 1/3 innings in Detroit's 14-12 win in 13 innings on Wednesday, hours after the Tigers acquired Farnsworth from the New York Yankees. In the sixth inning, Jones gave up a leadoff homer to Indians catcher Kelly Shoppach, who angered him by flipping his bat toward the Tigers' dugout as he ran from the batter's box.
"I don't show up hitters when I strike them out," Jones said. "I would think the professional courtesy goes both ways."
Earlier in the at-bat, Jones brushed Shoppach back with an inside pitch that he said had no bad intention.
"Maybe he didn't like that one pitch," Jones said. "Well, neither did I. Maybe he doesn't know that I hadn't thrown in about a week. I wasn't as sharp as I wanted."
Shoppach, who sat out Thursday's game after playing behind the plate for all 13 innings on Wednesday, said he got caught up in the moment.
"I got carried away," said Shoppach, who went 5-for-6 with two homers and tied the major-league record with five extra-base hits. "It wasn't intentional. I was excited. It was a big spot for us."
Shoppach said he spoke with Tigers catcher Brandon Inge after the game and explained his actions.
"Every now and then I've been know to flip a bat," he said.
To take Jones' roster spot, the club recalled left-hander Clay Rapada from Triple-A Toledo. He was 0-1 with a 2.45 ERA in 17 outings with the Mud Hens and went 2-0 in 14 appearances for Detroit earlier this season. Rapada gave up three runs and three hits in 1 2/3 innings in Thursday's loss.
Needing to fortify the back end of their bullpen for a playoff push, the Tigers traded 14-time All-Star catcher Ivan Rodriguez for Farnsworth, who will set up for new closer Fernando Rodney. Farnsworth is expected to join Detroit when the Tigers continue a 10-game trip in Tampa Bay on Friday.