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Alburquerque hits rough patch in past two outings

Alburquerque hits rough patch in past two outings

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DETROIT -- After seven consecutive scoreless outings, it seemed Al Alburquerque couldn't do anything wrong in his role as the setup man. In his last two appearances, however, he's struggled to get hitters out.

Alburquerque allowed three earned runs on four hits in two-thirds of an inning against the White Sox on Tuesday, and three earned runs on one hit and two walks in one-third of an inning on Monday against the Indians.

"Command appears to be one of his bigger issues, and then maybe letting up because he's concerned about his command, but I don't know," Tigers manager Jim Leyland said.

According to BrooksBaseball, Alburquerque didn't allow a hit on the 63 sliders he threw in his seven scoreless appearances, with one hit allowed on 30 sinkers. In his last two outings, he's given up two home runs on eight sinkers and three singles on 23 sliders, though Leyland doesn't suspect that Alburquerque is losing trust in any of his pitches.

"No I don't think so, he just didn't throw the ball good. I don't know whether he didn't throw the ball velocity-wise because he's concerned about getting it over or not. I can't answer that question," Leyland said.

Bobby Nightengale is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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