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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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Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski said Wednesday that Joe Nathan will remain the team's closer in 2015.
But that stance could easily change if the Tigers land a better option on the open market this winter, or if Nathan struggles out of the gate next season. "I would think he starts as our closer going into it," Dombrowski said during his end-of-the-season press conference at Comerica Park. "But he has to perform up to the capabilities required of doing it." Nathan posted a rough 4.81 ERA and 1.53 WHIP in 62 appearances this year. He turns 40 years old in November. Oct 15 - 5:27 PM
Source: MLive.com

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Date:

Joe Nathan pitched a perfect ninth in a 3-0 game for his 35th save on Sunday.

It looked like Nathan would be asked to finish a 1-0 contest, but the Tigers rallied for two runs in the bottom of the eighth. Nathan ends the year with a 4.81 ERA, the 10th highest mark ever for a guy with 30 saves. He actually posted ERAs of 3.00 in July, 3.48 in August and 3.00 in September. Still, there isn't a whole lot of confidence that he can get the job done in October.
Sep 28 - 4:41 PM

Joe Nathan retired the side in order in the ninth inning as the Tigers downed the Twins on Thursday.

Nathan even recorded a pair of strikeouts in the process. Comfortable ninth innings have been few and far between for the right-hander and his team. Nathan is 34-for-41 in save opportunities with a 4.89 ERA, a 1.56 WHIP, and a 54/29 K/BB ratio.
Sep 25 - 10:14 PM

Joe Nathan had another shaky ninth inning on Saturday, but was able to close out the Royals and protect a one-run advantage.

Even though he came away with his 33rd save, there are grumblings that Joakim Soria could get the ball the next time the Tigers have a lead to protect in the ninth inning. The veteran right-hander owns a 5.01 ERA, 1.58 WHIP and 52/28 K/BB ratio to go along with his seven blown saves on the season.
Sep 20 - 4:44 PM

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

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

Depth Charts

Batters
PosRoleName
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
PosRoleName
S1Max Scherzer
2David Price
3Justin Verlander
4Rick Porcello
5Kyle Lobstein
6Drew VerHagen
Relief Pitcher
PosRoleName
R1Joe Nathan
2Joakim Soria
3Joba Chamberlain
4Al Alburquerque
5Phil Coke
6Blaine Hardy
7Pat McCoy
8Jim Johnson
9Evan Reed
10Robbie Ray
11Kyle Ryan
12Buck Farmer
13Anibal Sanchez
14Luke Putkonen