Detroit Tigers option Joe Jimenez to Triple-A Toledo, finalizing 2021 pitching staff

Detroit Free Press

LAKELAND, Fla. — Former Detroit Tigers closer Joe Jimenez has been optioned to Triple-A Toledo, the team announced Saturday.

Because the Tigers had to remove a player from the bullpen after adding lefty Derek Holland, eliminating Jimenez should finalize the 2021 Opening Day pitching staff, with five starters and eight relievers.

Manager AJ Hinch said earlier this week that he wanted to have the bulk of his roster sorted out by Saturday or Sunday. He still needs to cut one position player from camp, with Rule 5 draft pick Akil Baddoo, utility infielder Harold Castro and first baseman Renato Nunez at the forefront of those conversations.

RISE AND FALL: Tigers’ Joe Jimenez was an All-Star. Where it went wrong and how he can fix it

QUESTIONS: Tigers must answer these three roster questions before spring training ends

RULE 5 PICK SHINES: Akil Baddoo was surprise of spring. It’s a no brainer to keep him

On Friday, Hinch set his starting rotation: Matthew Boyd, Julio Teheran, Tarik Skubal, Jose Urena and Casey Mize. Now, the bullpen is locked in: Gregory Soto, Buck Farmer, Bryan Garcia, Jose Cisnero, Daniel Norris, Derek Holland, Tyler Alexander and Michael Fulmer.

Soto, Norris, Holland and Alexander are left-handers.

Because Holland came to camp as a non-roster invitee, a spot on the 40-man roster still needs to be cleared for him. Also, right-hander Spencer Turnbull is slated to rejoin the starters after he returns from the non-baseball (COVID-19) injured list.

[ Joe Jimenez has a plan to return as Tigers’ closer: ‘Whatever they want me to do’ ]

This winter, the Tigers avoided an arbitration hearing with Jimenez, bringing him back for the 2021 season on a $1.5 million contract.

Evan Petzold is a sports reporter at the Detroit Free Press. Contact him at or follow him on Twitter @EvanPetzold.

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