He's back after being on the winning team in the World Baseball Classic. But he's not ready for the major league season to begin.

"I need to pitch," reliever Octavio Dotel said upon returning to the Tigers clubhouse Thursday, after getting a championship ring with the Dominican Republic in the World Baseball Classic. "I would love to pitch in four more games."

That's a lot, considering that after Thursday night's game at Joker Marchant Stadium against the Astros, the Tigers have nine games before leaving Florida.

But as they're doing with their starters, they can use Dotel in minor league games if necessary. Plus an every-other-day schedule for him might not be too much of a workload from here on out.

But while feeling behind, Dotel would not have missed the WBC for anything.

Well, almost anything.

"I compare the intensity of it to being in the World Series," he said. "I never expected we would win eight straight games. It was a great time."

It also proved to be another chance to celebrate — along with the three Tigers celebrations last year en route to the World Series, plus another in the Dominican winter league.

"I've been celebrating a lot lately," Dotel said. "Hopefully we keep doing that."

As expected, Dotel got an earful in the clubhouse about walking Miguel Cabrera when the Dominican Republic played Venezuela. But he was ready for it.



From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20130321/SPORTS0104/303210467#ixzz2OHwkDnDm