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Ausmus: Tigers will ride hot hand in bullpen

Right-hander Rondon could fit bill for late-inning relief duty
MLB.com @beckjason

DETROIT -- Tigers manager Brad Ausmus talked for weeks about the club's search for one more late-inning reliever to work alongside Shane Greene and Alex Wilson. Ausmus might have finally found that guy with Bruce Rondon, fresh back from Triple-A Toledo, but with Greene and Wilson both working through struggles, any hope of order in the bullpen has been dashed.

"I'm done saying the bullpen's going to fall into place," Ausmus said before Wednesday's game against the Royals. "We're just going to ride with who's hot."

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DETROIT -- Tigers manager Brad Ausmus talked for weeks about the club's search for one more late-inning reliever to work alongside Shane Greene and Alex Wilson. Ausmus might have finally found that guy with Bruce Rondon, fresh back from Triple-A Toledo, but with Greene and Wilson both working through struggles, any hope of order in the bullpen has been dashed.

"I'm done saying the bullpen's going to fall into place," Ausmus said before Wednesday's game against the Royals. "We're just going to ride with who's hot."

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For now, that's Rondon, whose two outings since his return on Friday have been key eighth-inning appearances. His scoreless inning on Sunday at San Diego kept the game tied for a Tigers rally and put Rondon in line for his first victory since last August. On Tuesday, Rondon replaced Daniel Stumpf after a leadoff walk and stranded two, striking out Salvador Perez and Brandon Moss around a Mike Moustakas single to earn a hold.

It's the kind of eighth-inning work Rondon thrived in last year, and the role Rondon had to open this year before his struggles with command and weight landed him back with the Mud Hens. But for now, Ausmus is done assigning roles behind closer Justin Wilson.

"Greene, he's had a couple rough outings, but I think he's still got the capability to pitch anywhere in tight situations," Ausmus said. "And [Alex Wilson] has struggled a little bit lately, but he's still going to be a guy we go to late. Bruce, his two outings have been good, but I'm hedging my bets on everything right now."

Quick hits
Matthew Boyd, who opened the season in the rotation before being optioned to Toledo a month ago, will return to start one of the games in Saturday's doubleheader against the Indians, Ausmus confirmed. Jordan Zimmermann will start the other game that day, and he will have his pick of which one. Boyd will be the 26th player the Tigers are allowed for the twin bill.

• Outfielder Jim Adduci, sidelined since mid-May with a right oblique strain, is 1-for-6 through two games on his rehab assignment with Toledo. Ausmus said Adduci will receive 30-40 at-bats with the Mud Hens before the Tigers make a decision.

• The Tigers announced a dozen signings from this month's Draft, including confirmation of high school catcher Sam McMillan's signing from last week. Also signing: right-handers Garett King (11th round), Billy Lescher (17th) and Drew Carlton (32nd); left-handers Drew Cosby (26th) and Grant Reuss (29th); third basemen Ryan Karstetter (19th) and Jordan Pierce (21st); infielder Jake Bivens (27th); shortstop Shane Cooper (37th); left fielder Dylan Rosa (18th); and center fielder Ronell Coleman (34th).

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.

Detroit Tigers, Bruce Rondon