TigsTown News: Tigers Release Byrdak

In a shocking move, the Tigers have announced the outright release of left-hander Tim Byrdak. One day after another abysmal spring outing, Byrdak is looking for new work.

After turning in a surprise season in 2007, one where he posted a 3.20 ERA in 39 relief appearances for the Tigers, Byrdak imploded this spring. The journeyman left-hander had walked nine batters in only ten innings of work, and allowed 21 hits over that span. His 13.50 ERA ranked dead last among Tigers pitchers with more than one inning of work this spring.

The move comes in the wake of continued comments from Manager Jim Leyland, indicating that he still viewed Byrdak as one of his bullpen lefties, and also muddies the waters surrounding the slots on the Opening Day roster. Recent comments have indicated that one bullpen spot was still up for grabs, with a battle ongoing between right-handers Aquilino Lopez and Yorman Bazardo. Byrdak's release seems to serve as a promising situation for both pitchers.

Despite Leyland's expressed preference of carrying two left-handers in the bullpen, he may be forced to head north with only Bobby Seay as his situational lefty. Outside of Lopez and Bazardo, there are no obvious options left available for the Tigers to take north, which could also be an indication that a trade for relief help is imminent.

Check back with TigsTown.com for all the details surrounding the final roster spots in Detroit, and all the other action out of Lakeland.

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