DETROIT, MI - JULY 20: Relief pitcher David Purcey #38 of the Detroit Tigers throws in the seventh inning during an MLB game against the Oakland Athletics at Comerica Park on July 20, 2011 in Detroit, Michigan. The Athletics won 7-5. (Photo by Dave Reginek/Getty Images)
Two lefty relievers were designated for assignment by their respective teams today, as a couple of contenders hope to liven up their bullpens with some new arms. Earlier this afternoon, Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News reported that the Rangers are designating Arthur Rhodes for assignment, and not longer after that, the Tigers announced on their Twitter feed that they've done the same with David Purcey.
Rhodes, 41, was actually expected to be a core part of the Rangers' bullpen this year after posting a 2.32 ERA in 143 innings over the previous three seasons, but he's finally been showing his age this season. The velocity on his fastball has dropped 2.3 MPH from last season, and he's lost similar speed on both of his secondary pitches as well. It's resulted in a whole lot of home runs and a 5.96 FIP this season, so based on this year's performance Rhodes certainly hasn't warranted a bullpen spot. Some team will presumably pick him up if he's interested, though, given how well he pitched from 2008-2010.
Purcey, 29, has been a well-traveled man this season. He began the season with the Blue Jays, but he got designated for assignment after just five appearances and ended up in Oakland after a trade. Not much more than a month later, the A's traded Purcey to Detroit in exchange for infielder Scott Sizemore. Sizemore, 26, has played a good deal of third base for the A's this season, posting a .243/.333/.389 in 44 games so far. Now Purcey may be on the move again, to possibly his fourth team in just a few months.