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Tigers add bullpen depth, call up Justin Miller from Triple-A Toledo

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The Tigers look to Triple-A Toledo for bullpen help, calling up Mud Hens right-hander Justin Miller. Tyler Collins is expected to be sent down on Friday in order to make room on the roster.

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

In a move aimed at bolstering a shaky bullpen which has seen a great deal of work over the past week, the Detroit Tigers have called up right-handed reliever Justin Miller from Triple-A Toledo (per John Wagner of the Toledo Blade). A corresponding roster move has not been announced by the team, but a source tells Bless You Boys rookie outfielder Tyler Collins will be sent down on Friday.

The 24-year-old Miller had made four appearances with the Mud Hens, recording one save. He's yet to allow a run and given up three hits, struck out six, walked one and hit two batters in 4 2/3 innings. The opposition is hitting .200 against Miller in 15 at-bats.

Miller's career numbers:


G IP ERA WHIP HR/9 BB/9 K/9 Saves K/BB
2013 27 27.0 7.87 1.70 1.7 5.3 11.0 3 2.06
Career 145 194.2 3.51 1.23 0.6 4.2 10.3 22 2.48
Steamer 1 1.0 4.62 1.50 0.0 4.21 6.29 0 1.49

This is what Patrick had to say about Miller as part of our roster preview:

Drafted as a right-handed pitcher by the Colorado Rockies in the 47th round of the amateur player draft in 2006, Miller instead went to college at Cal State Fresno. He was selected two years later by the Texas Rangers in the sixth round of the 2008 draft, and began his professional baseball career. Over parts of five seasons, he has thrown 195 innings (all in relief) with an ERA of 3.51 and a WHIP of 1.23.

Miller suffered a setback in 2012, missing the entire season due to Tommy John surgery. He resumed his career in 2013, throwing 27 innings in the Ranger organization between Double-A and Triple-A with an ERA of 7.67 and a WHIP over 1.70. This was largely thanks to a walk rate of 5.3 per nine innings. Not too impressive. He was released by the Rangers on September 1st, and picked up by the Tigers.

With the schedule picking up steam, ten games in the next ten days, the Tigers added bullpen insurance by bringing up Miller as an eighth relief arm. As for the bench? Collins becoming the odd man out, it means the Tigers will carry just four outfielders on the 25-man roster. An already weak bench will have just one backup outfielder in Don Kelly.