Free agent relief pitcher Jose Valverde is not sure about where he'll pitch next season, the embattled closer told reporters on Sunday night (via George Sipple of the Detroit Free Press).
Like fellow free agent hurler Anibal Sanchez, Valverde expressed a desire to return to Detroit next season after the team's championship hopes ended at the hands of the San Francisco Giants:
"You know, I think everybody wants to play for the Tigers. Great teammates, great owner."
If this does signal the end of Valverde's run in Detroit, he likely won't be remembered fondly after posting a 30.37 ERA in four postseason appearances. Valverde showed signs of decline during the regular season, seeing his ERA rise and his strikeout rate drop in 2012 after leading the league with 49 saves while boasting a 2.24 ERA in 2011.
In 10 MLB seasons with the Diamondbacks, Astros and Tigers, Valverde has racked up 277 saves and maintained a 3.11 ERA. In 2011 and 2012, his strikeout rate dipped below a batter per inning for the first time in his career.