Sunday, August 12, 2012

Villarreal Claims Elbow Weakness

By Sean Gagnier

Brayan Villarreal has not had a good weekend for the Tigers; he struggled in the ninth inning on Saturday, walking the first two batters he faced, one of which came around to score the winning run.

He struggled again on Sunday after Manager Jim Leyland ran him out there the day after his struggles. Leyland likes to get relievers back on the mound as soon as he can after they struggle so they can improve and shake off any bad feelings.

That wasn't the case for Villarreal, but now he says that he is experiencing arm fatigue. Villarreal claims that his arm feels weak and the Tigers are sending him to a specialist to examine his arm to find the source of the weakness.

He was considered by some to be a closer option, he threw hard and his stuff had good movement, but Detroit's recent track record with promising pitchers who can throw hard isn't all that stellar. Arm weakness could be many things, but it is likely a strained muscle or tendon, elbow tendinitis, a muscle or tendon tear or a dead arm. All of those things are bad, but not the end of the world.

Jacob Turner experienced a dead arm earlier in the season and was sat down for a while, it took a while to work back to his previous level but when he got there it was like nothing had happened. In fact, Turner looked so good that the Marlins asked for him in a trade.

Detroit will just have to wait and see what they hear on Villarreal's arm.

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