CHICAGO -- Tigers closer Jose Valverde denied that he threw a spitball to strike out Reds catcher Devin Mesoraco for the first out of a perfect ninth inning in Detroit's 7-6 win on Sunday.
"Anybody can say what they want to," Valverde said. "But I wasn't doing anything wrong, because I didn't spit at the baseball."
Valverde, who said he has seen the video making its way around the Internet, claimed he brought his glove to his face to wipe away sweat, not to spit in it.
"I never did anything wrong," he said. "I put my glove toward my mouth. Why? Because I sweat too much."
Valverde said he's not surprised about the reaction the video has received. He said no one in MLB has talked to him about the incident.
"Everybody wants to say something," Valverde said. "What I want to do is throw my pitch and make a good pitch, and that's it."
Valverde struck Mesoraco out on an inside fastball. Spitballs are usually noted for their atypical movement. Valverde said he just made a good pitch.
Tigers manager Jim Leyland said he was clueless about the situation until reading about it this morning.
"I didn't know anything about it until I saw something in the paper today," Leyland said. "I don't know what they're talking about, to be honest with you."
Fister to throw 'pen session on Wednesday
CHICAGO -- Pitchers Doug Fister (left side strain) and Drew Smyly (left finger blister) are both still day to day with their injuries, while outfielder Brennan Boesch (right ankle) returned to the starting lineup on Tuesday.
"I don't know what Boesch did yesterday, but whatever he did, it must have been OK," said Tigers manager Jim Leyland. "I got a text earlier today that he'd be all right."
Fister will throw a bullpen session tomorrow, which Leyland described as a big day for the starter. Fister said there's no deadline on the injury and it's more important to play it smart and stay healthy.
"It's getting progressively better," Fister said. "With each day, it loosens up."
Smyly also said his blister is looking better with each day and he will do everything he can to make his next start. He said he wasn't throwing on Tuesday, but will continue to tape it up and throw tomorrow to see how it feels.
"You've just got to let it heal," Smyly said. "There's not much you can do. They have an ointment I'm putting on it to kind of speed it up, but really all you can do is sit around and wait."
Putkonen joins Tigers' 'pen with Dotel on DL
CHICAGO -- Reliever Luke Putkonen joined the Tigers' active roster on Tuesday after reliever Octavio Dotel was placed on the 15-day disabled list with right shoulder inflammation.
Putkonen may be called upon immediately, as manager Jim Leyland announced that reliever Brayan Villarreal wouldn't be available on Tuesday after pitching three combined innings on Saturday and Sunday.
"Villareal's off today. He will not pitch today. Tell all the fans, all the talk shows, everybody," Leyland said. "He's getting two full days off. He deserves it. I've got to be careful with him, because he's got that violent delivery."
The Tigers recalled Putkonen from Triple-A Toledo, where the right-hander was 2-2 with a 3.32 ERA in 19 innings this season. Dotel, who hasn't pitched since June 2, is on the DL retroactive to June 3.
"It's one of those deals we've been fighting through all year," Leyland said. "If [Dotel's] not ready to pitch Tuesday, that means he's probably not ready to pitch Wednesday. It's only going to be about a five-day thing, so why not do it? We can't keep going short all the time, particularly in the National League."
Tigers manager Jim Leyland, whose first Major League win came against the Cubs, said he enjoys coming to Chicago and managing at Wrigley Field.
"I wish we were playing day games, because Chicago's my favorite city to go to," Leyland said. "It's such a nice place to get out and feel like a human being and go have dinner after the game."
Rowan Kavner is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.