Detroit Tigers: Gregory Soto has shaky first save opportunity in 2021

(Detroit Free Press)
(Detroit Free Press) /

The Detroit Tigers started out their season as 1-0 after a 3-2 victory over Cleveland, where Gregory Soto got his first save opportunity of the season. The Tigers had some questions around who would be nailing down the closer job; Soto ultimately would take down the honors.

Besides Soto, some guys were in the mix for the Detroit Tigers’ closer job, but Soto would earn the honors out of Spring Training. In his first opportunity, however, Soto did not look so good whatsoever. It was a shaky outing, to say the least.

Soto has electric stuff from the left side as a hard-throwing southpaw. He is more than deserving of a look as the closer, but his first appearance in 2021 was not the most promising. Cleveland was able to scratch a few runs across and get on Soto in the ninth inning on Opening Day.

The Tigers closing situation is likely to be a revolving door in 2021 regardless of Soto being good or not. Hinch has made it clear that he wants to put relievers into different situations to see what they can bring to the table, but with a tough first outing, Soto could be replaced quickly.

Detroit Tigers flame-throwing southpaw Gregory Soto was shaky in his first outing of the 2021 season.

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Soto could have had a much better showing in his first save of the year. While yes, the Tigers did win and Soto notched the save, it should have been much better.

He would allow two runs on two hits while also walking one while hitting a batter in his one inning of work.

He currently finds himself with an 18.00 ERA and a 3.00 WHIP which is not totally indicative of how he will perform in 2021 since it is just one outing that makes up these stats.

Do not count on these being nearly as high, but he needs to figure things out if he wants a lengthened opportunity to be the team’s closer.

With a fastball that lights up the radar gun, the hope is that Soto can find success as a max effort guy who locks down the closing role for the Tigers.

However, reality has not allowed for that; in 2020, Soto would pitch in 23 innings, totaling 27 appearances notching just two saves.

He was not the closer all year, but rather he was one of the guys who got a few looks. He would finish off the 2020 season with a 4.30 ERA, a 1.26 WHIP, and strike out 29 opposing hitters. As 2021 continues, Soto needs to bounce back, let the Opening Day jitters go, and try to settle in.

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The Tigers’ closing situation may not have been totally defined, but with Soto the first to draw the title, he needs to be better; the first outing was shaky, which needs to be ironed out.