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Matt Mantei Won't Be Calling It a Comeback

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Maybe I was being overly hopeful - or even delusional - but I was beginning to think that Matt Mantei might provide an answer to some of the Detroit Tigers' bullpen questions this spring. I was even more encouraged after reading Michael Rosenberg's column in Friday's Detroit Free Press, in which he described Mantei's breaking ball as "nasty" and a fastball that was hitting the low-to-mid 90s.

Unfortunately, it looks like Mantei's 2008 comeback might end the same way his attempt in 2006 did. After giving up two runs in one inning of work yesterday against Cleveland, Mantei felt pain in his right shoulder. And today, he didn't work out with the team, which prompted rumblings that Mantei might be getting ready to call it a career. Mantei's agent, however, insists that his client wants to have that shoulder examined by a doctor before making a final decision.

Elsewhere in the Detroit bullpen, Fernando Rodney is set to throw tomorrow after a week of recovery for his sore shoulder. And Francisco Cruceta still hasn't reported to Lakeland, as he continues to have problems with his visa. With the Tigers now in their third week of Spring Training, what are the chances of Cruceta having any shot at making the major league roster?