Though he wouldn't name Benoit the closer, Tigers manager Jim Leyland suggested Saturday that Benoit may head their closer committee. "We will use anybody, but the ideal situation probably -- as we sit right now -- would try to get to Benoit to the ninth inning," Leyland said. "I'm not saying that Benoit's the closer. What I'm saying is, we figure the lefty-right combination of him being effective against both guys, if rested and available, we would lean that way probably more often."
Recommendation: In both of Benoit's appearances so far this season, he's handled eighth inning duties and recorded the first out of the ninth inning before giving way to Phil Coke to finish off the final two batters. Coke, however, is a lefty who's susceptible to right-handed batters, and Benoit has relatively even splits against left-handed and right-handed batters, so it sounds like he'll be the favorite for save opportunities on most days.
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