Paul Wezner, Senior Editor
Losing Joel Zumaya for the next three months is going to be a very tough pill to swallow for the team. However, the team is lucky in that they still have Todd Jones closing, Fernando Rodney setting up, and hopefully a more reliable Jose Mesa to bridge the gap. While you can't replace someone like Zumaya, the Tigers weren't in a position where Zumaya was their only reliable reliever. However, the team will still likely have to look to upgrade somewhere in the 'pen should any struggles emerge. As for the his motion, while it still could be a concern, this appears to be nothing more than a freak accident that could have happened to any of the Tigers' pitchers. The Tigers shouldn't worry (at this point) about altering his throwing motion and making it less violent, rather just providing everything possible to get him back into the 'pen as soon as possible.
Mark Anderson, Associate Editor, Minor Leagues
The team is certainly going to miss Zumaya, even in the midst of his up and down season. He is an important cog in the bullpen, and the Tigers are going to need some luck and surprises to fill the extended void his injury leaves. If Mesa can come back healthy, there is a good chance he could step in and help off-set this injury a ton. As for his violent delivery and the future; it has always been a concern. At some point we really have to consider Zumaya injury prone. While he's never had anything of major substance, he also has yet to make it through a season without cause for some alarm. A back injury at West Michigan, a tired arm/shoulder at Erie, the same at Toledo, a wrist injury last season, and now this. There comes a time when its less about his violent delivery, and more about starting to expect something to hamper him at a point in any season; and the team may be wise to begin planning for such a contingency.
Jason Avery, Associate Editor, Amateur Baseball
I think it goes without saying that the Tigers will miss Zumaya. Not only the key outs he gets in the late innings, but the attitude he brings to the team. He always brings a lot of energy when he enters, especially at Comerica Park, and during the long grind of the season, that's something shouldn't go unnoticed. His violent motion is always going to be a concern because of the stress he puts on his elbow, but he's in the right role where he can just rear back and fire and go all out with his stuff. I think the better question is what will the Tigers do if Zumaya is out for a long period of time? Will they make a trade? Not initially, but you can bet Dave Dombrowski will be taking a close look at seeing what type of relief pitching is out there.
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