Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Will Kyle Bloom for the Tigers This Season?

Scott Warheit, over at MLive.com's Cutoff Man blog, references a Jan. 3 Quad City Times article, including an interview, with our Rule 5 Draft pick Kyle Bloom.  Nice informative piece on Bloom.

According to the Quad City Times article, Bloom was much improved during the second half of last season with the Pirate's AA Altoona team, after correcting a hitch in his delivery with the help of Altoona pitching coach Brad Holman.  He then dominated in the six-week long Hawaiian Winter League, with the following stat line:

30 innings, 15 hits, 11 walks, 32 Ks, .144 BAA or OBA, whichever you prefer, and made the league's all star team.

Bloom's got a curve, fastball (92 MPH tops in Hawaii), and change-up in his arsenal.  The curve's reportedly got good movement.

You probably already know that under the Rule 5 Draft, if Bloom does not remain on the 25-man roster the entire season, he'll have to be offered back to the Pirates.  Dombrowski said that "If he throws the way he threw for Egan (Tigers scout), I think he'll be interesting and have a chance to make our ballclub."

So, Bloom could be another bullpen puzzle piece.  

On a slightly related note, I'm hoping James Skelton, the catcher we lost to the Diamondbacks in the Rule 5 Draft, gets offered back to us.  As with Santiago, higher ups are hung up on "durability" issues.  Yes, my right thigh probably outweighs Skelton, but I think he's got a lot of upside.

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