The Detroit Tigers are near the point where they just need warm bodies on their pitching staff, after Jarrod Washburn's latest setback with his left knee. As a result, Alfredo Figaro has been activated from the disabled list and added to the active roster.
Technically, Figaro was included in the initial wave of September call-ups, but was kept on the DL. However, there's obviously a need for more arms now. And the Tigers are surely hoping he can provide more than just a warm body.
Will Figaro be added to the starting rotation? He made two starts for the Tigers in a brief stint with the team in late June, going 1-1 with a 7.46 ERA, before being sent down to Triple-A Toledo. (Soon thereafter, he went to the DL with a sprained wrist.) At the time, Jim Leyland was critical of Figaro's lack of aggressiveness towards hitters. There were even rumblings that he might be tipping his pitches.
The only problem is that Figaro didn't work as a starter during his rehabilitation assignment with Double-A Erie. In five games with the Seawolves, he pitched 12 innings of relief. His longest outing was four innings. Figaro allowed 11 hits during that span, but gave up just one earned run. He also compiled 10 strikeouts and six walks.
So who will be Detroit's starting pitcher on Sunday vs. Minnesota? For right now, it's the Tigers' most nagging mystery.