K-Rod placed on emergency family leave

K-Rod placed on emergency family leave

DETROIT -- The Tigers will be without closer Francisco Rodriguez for at least the next few days. The team on Sunday placed him on the family medical emergency list to attend to an undisclosed family matter.

By rule, a player must spend a minimum of three days on the list. He can stay on the list up to seven days. Manager Brad Ausmus said there's no clear timetable for how long Rodriguez will be on leave.

Rodriguez, acquired from Milwaukee last November as part of Detroit's bullpen revamp, has four saves in five chances this season. He's allowed five runs on seven hits over 6 1/3 innings with four walks and three strikeouts. The 34-year-old lives in his native Caracas, Venezuela, during the offseason.

With Rodriguez away, Ausmus said he'll use a combination of setup men Justin Wilson and Mark Lowe to close games, depending on matchups. The duo has generally shared the seventh and eighth innings, alternating depending on left- and right-handed hitters. Wilson, the 28-year-old lefty, has never recorded a save in 218 Major League appearances. Lowe, the 32-year-old righty, has six saves over his 11-year big league career, but only one save since 2012.

To fill Rodriguez's roster spot, the Tigers recalled left-hander Matt Boyd from Triple-A Toledo. Boyd, a fifth-starter candidate in Spring Training who finished runner-up to Shane Greene, was scheduled to start for the Mud Hens on Saturday night, and was warming up when he got the call. Warwick Saupold made the spot start and teamed up with three relievers for Toledo's first no-hitter in 20 years.

Boyd pitched the final 4 2/3 innings of Sunday's 6-3 loss to the Indians. After the game, the Tigers optioned him back to Toledo and recalled reliever Jose Valdez. The 26-year-old right-hander allowed two runs on five hits over six innings in five appearances for the Mud Hens, walking four and striking out five.

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.