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Tigers designate Dontrelle Willis for assignment

May 30, 2010, 9:41 AM EDT

willis leg kick.jpgAs first reported by the Tigers’ own official team Twitter feed, left-hander Dontrelle Willis has been designated for assignment to clear room for the promotion of Sunday’s starter, Max Scherzer.

Thus ends an era, for lack of a better term.  Willis, now 28, joined the Tigers on December 5, 2007, as part of a massive trade from the Marlins that also involved Miguel Cabrera.  He signed a three-year, $29 million contract extension soon after the transfer was complete, and that’s when the problems began. 

D-Train made only seven starts in his first year with the Tigers and allowed 25 earned runs in 24 innings — good enough for a 9.38 ERA and a 2.21 WHIP.  Things got no better in 2009 and he continued to show ineffectiveness this season.

Perhaps a move back to the National League will help Willis revitalize his career.  It’s worked so far for Carlos Silva, and countless others have enjoyed similar success.  Either way, his time in Detroit, wearing the Olde English “D,” will not be remembered fondly.

  1. kcubrats - May 30, 2010 at 9:59 AM

    Uh, Silva? That writing is as lazy as anything Murray Chass ever dictated to a barback. Dontrelle was garbage, ballast, that the Fish foisted on the Tigers, insisting he be included in the MCab deal so they could salary dump a few million. He was over then. You just made it sound like the death spiral happened after the extension. At the time, it was one of the most confoundingly stupid moves any GM has made in the last decade, totally pointless and unnecessary. Were they trying to buy DTrain some confidence? Made no sense at the time.

  2. Scott - May 30, 2010 at 10:49 AM

    Also, Willis is a lefty.

  3. Morgan W - May 30, 2010 at 10:55 AM

    Often overlooked and mentioned even less….’D-Train’ just got fat and lazy. All this syndrome talk, and anxiety issues my ass. I would be self conscience also if I put on 20pounds and tried to pretend I was a highly paid professional athlete.

  4. Harry - May 30, 2010 at 12:34 PM

    damn i thought this kid had talent to be a star, he might be able to make things up in the NL and live up to the potential

  5. Steve - May 30, 2010 at 8:14 PM

    Yes, Silva’s article is wrong. Willis was garbage before the Tigers got him and the only way the Marlins make the Cabrera deal is if Willis is in it. Even as bad as Willis has been the Tigers still robbed the Marlins. Both the center pieces for the Marlins have been total busts. I just hope that when the Marlins get ready to deal Hanley Ramirez the call the Tigers again. Where the Tigers blew it was when they got Willis they signed him to a riase extension…before he even pitched an inning for them.

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