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Coke turning the page on first-half troubles

Coke turning the page on first-half troubles

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DETROIT -- While the Tigers are hoping for consistency from the younger pitchers in their bullpen, they are also hoping left-handed reliever Phil Coke can regain his form from the 2012 playoffs.

Despite an 0-5 record and 5.46 ERA, Coke had thrown five consecutive scoreless outings spanning 3 2/3 innings entering play Tuesday. In that span, he struck out three while giving up two hits and no walks.

"It's hard to find someone that has better stuff than Phil Coke," president/general manager Dave Dombrowski said. "His stuff is really good. We know he can pitch in a pennant race, we've seen him do that and be very efficient. Hopefully the inconsistencies stop a little bit more, and I think everybody's talked about that."

While Coke has been facing mainly left-handed hitters since the All-Star break, he's thrived in the role, including throwing a scoreless ninth inning against the Phillies on Sunday.

"With all the frustrations I've experienced in the first half, it's over, it's done with," Coke said. "That was so yesterday, man. I just want the baseball when [manager Jim Leyland] decides to give me the baseball, and for him to get off the field so I can do my job."

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. 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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