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Joe Nathan | Relief Pitcher

Team: Detroit Tigers
Age / DOB:  (39) / 11/22/1974
Ht / Wt:  6'4' / 230
Bats / Throws: Right / Right
College: SUNY-Stony Brook
Contract: view contract details

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Recent News

Joe Nathan gave up two runs in the bottom of the ninth inning Tuesday, suffering the blown save against the Twins.
After watching his team take a one-run lead in the top half of the inning, Nathan proceeded to walk Trevor Plouffe with one out before allowing a Kurt Suzuki RBI double. Two batters later, Aaron Hicks ended the game with a walk-off infield single. Nathan's ERA is back up to 5.10, and with the Tigers needing every win they can get at this point manager Brad Ausmus will need to think long and hard about who gets the call the next time there's a save situation. Owners need to have Joakim Soria on the back burner just in case. Sep 16 - 11:23 PM

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Joe Nathan earned his 32nd save of the season Sunday in the Tigers' defeat of the Indians.

Nathan gave up a single to Michael Brantley, an RBI double to Carlos Santana, and then walked Jason Kipnis, but manager Brad Ausmus stuck with him and he was able to finish off the frame. Nathan has been flirting with danger all season and currently owns a 4.83 ERA and 1.54 WHIP in 54 innings. He's blown six saves.
Sep 14 - 5:12 PM

Joe Nathan allowed the first two batters he faced to reach base in the ninth inning, but was able to escape with his 30th save in Tuesday's 4-2 victory over the Royals.

Norichika Aoki and Omar Infante both reached on infield singles, which left Tigers fans inches from catatonia. Fortunately for the Tigers, Nathan was able to sandwich a pick-off of Jarrod Dyson between two strikeouts to end the contest. It has not been a fun year for Nathan, who is now 30-for-36 in save opportunities with a 4.85 ERA, 1.52 WHIP, and 51/25 K/BB ratio.
Sep 9 - 11:32 PM

Joe Nathan has been unavailable for the past couple of games due to right elbow tenderness.

The Tigers haven't run into a save opportunity since Nathan last pitched on September 2. The veteran right-hander is thought to be available on Monday against the Royals, but this may be something worth monitoring down the stretch. Nathan owns a rough 5.04 ERA and 1.54 WHIP in 53 appearances this season. Joakim Soria is due back from an oblique strain later this week.
Sep 8 - 1:18 PM

Joe Nathan worked around a two-out single to pick up his 29th save in Tuesday's win against the Indians

It didn't appear Nathan would have to work, as the Tigers were behind 2-1 through eight innings, but J.D. Martinez's three-run homer in the ninth sent Nathan to his feet to warm up. The Indians didn't mount much of a threat against him. The right-hander now has 29 saves in 35 opportunities with a 5.04 ERA, a 1.54 WHIP, and a 49/25 K/BB ratio.
Sep 2 - 11:19 PM

Joe Nathan had a rare perfect ninth inning as he picked up his 28th save in Tuesday's victory against the Yankees.

Nathan had allowed runs in each of his last three appearances, continuing what has been a tumultuous season, but the Yankees did not threaten the right-hander on Tuesday. Nathan was able to retire Carlos Beltran, Martin Prado, and Stephen Drew to end the contest. He is now 28-for-34 in save chances with a 5.25 ERA, a 1.58 WHIP, and a 49/25 K/BB ratio.
Aug 26 - 11:11 PM

Despite giving up a run, Joe Nathan picked up his 26th save as the Tigers beat the Rays 8-6 in 11 innings Tuesday.

Fortunately, one of the AL's few relievers consistently worse than Nathan this year, Grant Balfour, gave the Tigers some margin for error by giving up three runs in the top of the 11th. One of those runs scored on a bases-loaded walk and another came on a wild pitch. Nathan got the first two batters in the bottom of the 11th, then gave up a single, a walk and an RBI single before striking out Sean Rodriguez to end it. He's still blown just two saves since the beginning of June, but after a pretty nice run in July, he has looked very shaky again of late.
Aug 20 - 12:11 AM

Joe Nathan picked up his 25th save despite allowing a run in the ninth inning on Saturday.

David Price twirled eight innings of beautiful one-run ball. Joe Nathan then came in and twirled one inning of failure. Nathan might not have blown the game, but he did allow two hits and a run. Brad Ausmus recently said that he was sticking with Nathan in the ninth, but Joba Chamberlain is lurking and if Nathan doesn't start to improve on his ghastly 5.20 ERA and 1.58 WHIP, his days are numbered.
Aug 16 - 11:16 PM

Tigers manager Brad Ausmus told reporters Saturday that he's sticking with Joe Nathan at closer.

Nathan took his sixth blown save of the season Saturday in the Tigers' loss to the Blue Jays, allowing a run on two hits and two walks while recording just one out. But the veteran right-hander apparently still has some leash. Joakim Soria has not been good since joining the Tigers and suffered an injury in Saturday's game. Joba Chamberlain might be the best guy to own as Nathan insurance.
Aug 9 - 4:41 PM

Joe Nathan was saddled with his sixth blown save of the season in Saturday's loss to the Blue Jays, surrendering a run on two hits and two walks in his 1/3 of an inning.

This coming on the heels of Nathan loading the bases and nearly blowing another save on Friday night. The damage against him should've been worse, had it not been for Joakim Soria entering and bailing him out of a bases loaded, one-out jam. His grasp on the closer's role is nearly gone.
Aug 9 - 4:22 PM

Joe Nathan made things interesting by loading the bases in the ninth inning on Friday, but managed to escape with a one-run lead to earn his 24th save of the year.

After the Tigers tagged Blue Jays closer Casey Janssen with three runs in the top half of the inning, Sloppy Joe did his best to give the lead right back to the Blue Jays. He allowed a leadoff single to Jose Bautista and issued two-out walks to Colby Rasmus and Juan Francisco, but was able to get Josh Thole on a foul pop out to end the night. He has now fired scoreless innings in 11 of his last 12 outings, lowering his ERA from 6.37 to 5.18.
Aug 8 - 10:47 PM

Joe Nathan closed the door on the Yankees, pitching a scoreless 12th inning to pick up his 23rd save on Tuesday.

For the first time since early May, Nathan can once again say he has strung together six consecutive scoreless appearances. The right-hander is 23-for-29 in save chances with a 5.31 ERA, 1.43 WHIP, and 45/17 K/BB ratio. As long as he continues pitching well, the closer's job will remain his.
Aug 5 - 11:29 PM

Joe Nathan was able to navigate the ninth inning without surrendering a run on Friday, despite allowing a hit and a walk in the frame.

The veteran right-hander has pitched better of late, but still has been forced to dance on raindrops and pitch out of danger in far too many situations. He sports an unsightly 5.45 ERA, 1.46 WHIP and 45/17 K/BB ratio on the season, but with Joakim Soria struggling with his new club Nathan's security in the ninth inning is actually growing.
Aug 1 - 10:20 PM

Joe Nathan struck out the side to emphatically shut out the lights on the Angels in a 6-4 Thursday victory.

He did so as new Dave Dombrowski toy Joakim Soria looked on from the bullpen area. This was the second time this season that Nathan has struck out the side. Nathan toted an embarrassing 6.23 ERA from the ballpark after July 19's blown save against the Indians, but he's struck out five and given up just one hit and no walks in three consecutive shutout appearances. As long as he keeps stringing together scoreless appearances, Brad Ausmus will keep trotting Nathan out in the ninth. If Nathan returns to his June form (9.00 ERA), however, it will be Soria time in Detroit.
Jul 25 - 1:45 AM

Tigers general manager Dave Dombrowski said Joe Nathan will remain the Tigers' closer despite Wednesday's trade for Joakim Soria, according to's Jason Beck.

It was a legitimate question, as Nathan owns a 5.89 ERA and five blown saves on the year. The right-hander has been better in July, though, having been scored upon in just one of his seven appearances. Soria will presumably hold down a setup role with his new club, but he will be looming if Nathan falters in the closer role going forward.
Jul 23 - 11:55 PM

Depth Charts

C1Alex Avila
2Bryan Holaday
3James McCann
1B1Miguel Cabrera
2B1Ian Kinsler
SS1Eugenio Suarez
2Hernan Perez
3Andrew Romine
4Jose Iglesias
3B1Nick Castellanos
LF1J.D. Martinez
2Andy Dirks
CF1Rajai Davis
2Ezequiel Carrera
RF1Torii Hunter
2Don Kelly
3Tyler Collins
4Steven Moya
DH1Victor Martinez
Starting Pitcher
S1Max Scherzer
2David Price
3Justin Verlander
4Anibal Sanchez
5Rick Porcello
6Kyle Lobstein
7Drew VerHagen
Relief Pitcher
R1Joe Nathan
2Joakim Soria
3Joba Chamberlain
4Al Alburquerque
5Phil Coke
6Blaine Hardy
7Pat McCoy
8Jim Johnson
9Evan Reed
10Robbie Ray
11Kyle Ryan
12Buck Farmer
13Luke Putkonen
14Bruce Rondon