The Detroit Tigers have apparently been in contact with the Arizona Diamondbacks regarding the availability of right-hander Brad Ziegler, reports FOX Sports' Jon Morosi. However, it appears that Arizona is "inclined to keep" Ziegler rather than deal him despite their awful 43-56 record and 11.5 game hole in the NL West.
The Tigers have been scouring the relief market in search of some stability at the back of their bullpen, as incumbent closer and major offseason acquisition Joe Nathan has struggled greatly this season. For a team as good as Detroit, they have quite an awful bullpen, with only three relievers currently on their roster sporting an above-average ERA+, and a 3.94 staff FIP that ranks just 25th in the majors. Detroit has been connected to numerous late-innings arms in recent days, including Joakim Soria of the Rangers and Joaquin Benoit of the Padres.
Diamondbacks' president Derrick Hall recently called Ziegler "impossible to replace", and considering his rather team-friendly contract extension signed in December, Ziegler provides value to Arizona beyond 2014. He will make just $5 million next season and the Diamondbacks carry a $5.5 million club option on him for 2016 that includes a $1 million buyout.
Ziegler is enjoying an excellent season in his fourth year with the Diamondbacks. In a league-leading 51 appearances, Ziegler has thrown 50.1 innings with a 2.50 ERA, 151 ERA+, 3.30 FIP, 2.59 K/BB, and 1.2 WAR. For his career, he owns a 2.41 ERA, 3.35 FIP, and 10.6 WAR.