Left-hander Brad Thomas hasn’t pitched for the Detroit Tigers since May 10. That could’ve been due to poor performance, as Thomas compiled a 9.00 ERA in 12 appearances this season. But it turns out he may not have been available because of injury.
Thomas was placed on the 15-day disabled list on Saturday with left elbow inflammation. To take his place on the roster, the Tigers recalled left-hander Charlie Furbush from Triple-A Toledo.
Furbush, 25, has pitched well with the Mud Hens this season, compiling a 4-3 record and 2.91 ERA in eight starts, with 55 strikeouts in 46 1/3 innings.
Though he worked as a starter in Toledo, the presumption is that he’ll pitch out of the bullpen with the Tigers. That’s assuming Phil Coke stays in the starting rotation, which it appears that he will, as he’s following his normal work schedule toward a Monday start.
Bless You Boys reported earlier in the week that Furbush and Andy Oliver would be called up from Toledo, but an exact timetable for the moves was not known. It’s possible that the Tigers decided to wait on calling up Oliver after Coke pitched so well in his last start, with seven shutout innings against the Red Sox on Wednesday. Starting Furbush would be another option, of course.
Thomas was asked to pitch in Friday night’s loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates, but according to Jason Beck, his elbow locked up on him while warming up. That certainly made the decision-making process easier for the Tigers, though one has to wonder how long Thomas was going to have a spot on the roster because of how he’d been pitching.