Dave Dombrowski has mentioned a couple of times this off-season that the Tigers had interest in acquiring a left-handed reliever and today they got one. They have signed John Bale to a minor league contract. John Who? The 36-year old Bale has pitched in seven seasons for four MLB teams and last appeared in the majors as a Royal in 2009. He spent last season with the Hiroshima Carps of the Japanese Central League.
In 173 2/3 innings as a starter an reliever, he has a 4.66 ERA, 4.02 FIP and 148/75 K/BB. On the positive side, he has a lifetime OPS against of .647 facing left-handed batters.
He is not likely to play a major role on the Tigers, but adds depth. He will surely be invited to spring training and will be used as a left-handed specialist if he makes the team. He will compete for a spot on the roster with fellow lefties Daniel Schlereth and Brad Thomas