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CBSSports.com's Jon Heyman reports that Detroit has designated reliever Jose Valverde for assignment. This means that the Tigers now have 10 days to trade or release Valverde or place him on waivers. The move also means that Valverde is no longer on the Tigers' 40-man roster.
This season Valverde, who was signed by Detroit to a major-league contract in late April, has pitched to a 5.59 ERA, 1.24 WHIP and 3.17 K/BB ratio in 19 1/3 innings of work. In 2011, Valverde finished fifth in the AL Cy Young balloting, but he regressed significantly in 2012. In truth, many of Valverde's underlying indicators have been trending in the wrong general direction since 2009.
For now, it appears that Joaquin Benoit will, more often than not take over the closer's role.
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