Lakeland, Fla. — As the raindrops pounded the roof of the Tigers clubhouse Wednesday morning, manager Brad Ausmus was asked when he was going to start being concerned about closer Francisco Rodriguez’s prolonged absence.
“I don’t have a drop dead date,” he said. “He just needs to be here in time to be ready. I am assuming it’ll get taken care of sooner than later.”
Rodriguez’s visa issues have been cleared up and the Tigers expect him to arrive in Lakeland sometime Wednesday. Once he passes his medical examination, he is expected to be in uniform and throwing Thursday.
He will have missed eight days of camp.
“There’s no concern from my standpoint,” pitching coach Rich Dubee said. “He’s been through this in the past, so, no concern. I am sure he will be here in plenty of time.”
Rodriguez, the game’s active saves leader with 386, is 34 years old. The last two seasons with the Brewers he saved 82 games and posted a WHIP under 1.00.