A lot of fans were probably aghast when the Tigers made the decision to sign Jose Valverde to a speculative contract earlier this year. With the way his time in Detroit seemingly ended last October — blown saves and playoff implosions — it was easy to see their point.

A glance at early returns in this season gives the appearance the decision has turned out fine so far, yet a deeper look shows there may be storm clouds on the horizon.

Valverde has four saves in five chances this season. His strikeout rate has jumped from 16 percent of plate appearances in 2012 to 24 percent in 2013, but he's walking three batters for every two he walked before.

Of additional concern is our old friend BABIP — batting average on balls in play.

Valverde during his first three seasons in Detroit had a BABIP of .250, meaning batters reached base safely once for every four opportunities fielders had to create an out.

This season that figure is .056 — a rate closer to one in 20. Did Valverde do something different to get batters to send the ball right to his fielders? Did the Tigers get that much better in the field?

Nope and nope. Expect some hits to start to drop, some runners to start to score, and some frustrations to overflow yet again among fans.