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Tigers Cut Veteran Reliever

Detroit — The Detroit Tigers designated reliever Jose Valverde for assignment, less than two months after bringing the veteran right-hander back to the major leagues for another chance to be the team’s closer.

Valverde went 0-1 with a 5.59 ERA, converting nine saves in 12 chances. The Tigers will likely use Joaquin Benoit in most save situations for the time being.

Detroit has 10 days to make a move with the 35-year-old Valverde.

The Tigers recalled right-hander Al Alburquerque from Triple-A Toledo to replace Valverde in the bullpen. They also put outfielder Matt Tuiasosopo on the disabled list with a strained left intercostal and recalled outfielder Avisail Garcia from Toledo.

Detroit general manager Dave Dombrowski said he’d like Valverde to go to the minor leagues to work through his struggles.

Carpenter Cleared to Resume Throwing

St. Louis — The Cardinals cleared pitcher Chris Carpenter to resume rehabbing from a lower back injury yesterday after the team got outside medical opinions about his comeback from nerve issues.

General manager John Mozeliak said the 38-year-old New Hampshire native played catch yesterday and was scheduled for a light bullpen session Saturday. How the former NL Cy Young winner responds to that activity will determine a course of action.

Carpenter’s back tightened after a bullpen session and weight work on Sunday.

Mozeliak said the back problem slowed Carpenter’s rehab from an injury that caused numbness and tingling on the right side of his body. He didn’t believe it was a major setback, although the team still is not counting on a contribution from Carpenter, and declined to provide a timetable.

“I just think that’s a dangerous thing to answer,” Mozelilak said.

“The moment we start getting out in front of that something may occur, so it’s just better to sort of take this day by day.”

Carpenter was a 21-game winner in his 2005 NL Cy Young season and was second after going 17-4 with a 2.24 ERA in 2009. In his career, he has missed most or all of five seasons due to shoulder, elbow and nerve injuries, and pitched sparingly last season after radical surgery to relieve nerve compression.

Yanks Add Infielder

Chicago — The New York Yankees acquired minor league infielder Brent Lillibridge from the Chicago Cubs yesterday for a player to be named or cash.

Lillibridge is one of several backup infielders acquired by the Yankees this season to help fill in for their injured All-Stars. The trade yesterday is the second deal between New York and Chicago this year.