DETROIT -- What looked like Francisco Liriano's last audition for for interested teams before Tuesday's non-waiver Trade Deadline is now off. The Tigers' left-hander has been scratched from his scheduled start Saturday against the Indians after what the team called an allergic reaction sent him to an area hospital for
DETROIT -- What looked like Francisco Liriano's last audition for for interested teams before Tuesday's non-waiver Trade Deadline is now off. The Tigers' left-hander has been scratched from his scheduled start Saturday against the Indians after what the team called an allergic reaction sent him to an area hospital for tests.
Liriano checked out OK and is feeling better, manager Ron Gardenhire said after the Tigers' 8-3 loss to the Indians on Friday, but the team decided not to start him since he hasn't thrown in a couple of days. Fellow lefty Blaine Hardy will make the spot start instead. Liriano could potentially pitch in relief, according to Gardenhire.
The change comes as teams debate whether to make an offer on Liriano, and where he might fit in on a contending team's pitching staff. He spent last October in the bullpen for the World Series champion Astros after a Deadline deal from Toronto. The Tigers signed him in Spring Training to a one-year deal with hopes of a similar trade this summer to add a prospect to their system.
A half-dozen or so scouts were on hand Friday as fellow trade candidate Mike Fiers made what could be his final start as a Tiger. That said, teams have likely made their evaluations already on the 34-year-old Liriano, who owns a 3-5 record and 4.73 ERA in 16 starts despite struggling in July.
Gardenhire did not know what caused Liriano's allergic reaction. Hardy said he received word Friday afternoon to be ready to start. He'll be starting on five days' rest, having started in injured Michael Fulmer's slot last Sunday against the Red Sox. The Tigers shifted him back to the bullpen Wednesday, moving to a four-man rotation with three off-days in an eight-day span, but Hardy said he threw a full bullpen session in the ninth inning of Wednesday's series finale at Kansas City.
"I was trying to keep [my arm] built up," Hardy said. "Well, it seemed to pan out for me. Hopefully, I can get deep enough into the game to turn it over the bullpen and get a win."
Hardy is 3-3 with a 3.77 ERA in 19 appearances this year. All three wins have come as a starter, to go along with a 4.24 ERA in nine starts. He has not faced the Indians this season.
Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and Facebook.