DETROIT - The Detroit Tigers have reportedly claimed Astros closer Chad Qualls off revocable waivers Tuesday morning. The Tigers and Astros will have until Wednesday to reach an agreement for Qualls before the 36-year-old is simple pulled back off waivers in Houston.
Detroit is desperately searching for bullpen help as the final month of the season approaches. General manager Dave Dombrowski made a big move to pick up Texas closer Joakim Soria at the trade deadline in July, but Soria has since landed on the disabled list, leaving the Tigers short-handed once again.
In wake of the all-around fiasco that has surrounded Joe Nathan on and off the field this season, the Tigers are likely exploring options to solidify the later innings. Nathan was brought to Detroit as the best closer available this offseason, only to post a 5.36 ERA and blow six saves through 50 appearances.
Qualls has been a solid Major League reliever in more than 10 seasons, racking up 65 saves and 161 holds while posting a career ERA of 3.75. He has been particularly dominant this season, owning a 3.07 ERA and saving games in 14 of 17 chances.
Detroit could certainly improve its bullpen by adding Qualls, even though the closer's numbers declined sharply after the All-Star break. Qualls owns a 6.17 ERA in his 10 appearances since the Midsummer Classic, but a 1.42 ERA in August.
The reliever is under contract for $3 million next season, with a $3.5-million club option for 2016.
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