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Tigers manager Jim Leyland said that he may use struggling closer Jose Valverde in Game 4, but did not say that an appearance by Papa Grande was a certainty.
Speaking after the Tigers' 2-1 win Tuesday over the Yankees in the third game of the American League Championship Series, manager Jim Leyland would not commit to using Jose Valverde as his closer, according to a tweet from WXYZ's Tom Leyden. Leyland elected to use Phil Coke instead of Valverde in the ninth inning, prompting questions of whether Valverde would be used again in the series.
Valverde has struggled mightily in two games this post season, imploding in his only appearance in the ALCS against New York. In Game 1, Valverde allowed four earned runs before being yanked with an out remaining, allowing the Yankees to tie the game and send it into extra innings. The Tigers won the game, 6-4, in the 12th, but Valverde has yet to make another appearance. He has a 27.00 ERA and WHIP of 3.43 in three appearances over 2 1/3 innings during the 2012 postseason. Opposing batters are hitting .500 off of him, but he did earn a save in the ALDS.