Taking a long-term look at Jose Valverde, at his team, and some tense Tigers fans.

Valverde has been back in town six weeks. They have been six nervous weeks for fans who do not trust the Tigers closer to finish a game without some degree of trauma.

And yet here are his numbers after he pitched a tough ninth inning in Saturday’s 6-4 Tigers victory over the Indians at Comerica Park:

Sixteen games, eight saves.

He has worked —and sometimes sweated — through 152⁄3 innings, allowing 11 hits, while striking out 15 and walking five.

Notice the key stats: 152⁄3 innings, 11 hits (seven of which came in two games), 15 strikeouts, five walks.

There are only 20 or more teams in baseball that would be delighted with that from their closer. And that is why Valverde, unless he dissolves in these coming days and weeks, will continue as the Tigers’ ninth-inning fireman. If a better option existed, Valverde and his fright-factory ways would be working elsewhere. But there are no better choices at the moment than a guy who tends to get the job done.

He had a horrible game in Baltimore on June 1 when he served up two home runs and blew a 5-3 lead. He had another near-disaster Friday when he got swatted for a pair of home runs on hanging, 79-mph split-finger pitches.

But he came in Saturday and did what he has done the bulk of the time since rejoining his old gang in April. He finished the game. He got a save — after plunging the Tigers camp into cardiac peril.

Valverde gave up a one-out bloop hit that Omar Infante nearly snared in right field. That’s baseball, but Valverde was throwing quality pitches from the outset, and the pop single forced him to into the equivalent of a four-out inning.

He followed with a 10-pitch walk to Yan Gomes. A 35-year-old right-handed reliever, who might as well have been a horror-flick actor if he hadn’t become a pitcher, was all but inviting a ballpark jammed with Tigers followers to sit there and indulge in another nightmare.

But in his uniquely harrowing way, Valverde threw good splitters — 83-84 mph — for third strikes against fan-favorite Ryan Raburn, followed by Mike Aviles.

“Like I said before, and for once in my life I’m right,” Tigers manager Jim Leyland said after the game, “he didn’t panic. He’s done it before. He kept his composure and he got two strikeouts to end the game.”

Some fans believe Valverde is a Leyland creation. They think the manager loves him or he wouldn’t be here.

Of course, it has nothing to do with Leyland. Dave Dombrowski signed Valverde when he and his manager understood the Tigers were in trouble without a guy they could at least reasonably trust to pitch the ninth inning.

That man became Valverde. He has blown a couple of games and you can bet he will blow a few more.

But the Tigers clearly will live with the percentages until they decide a better option is within reach.

Dombrowski might decide ahead of next month’s trade deadline to deal for a more locked-down closer, particularly if Valverde has trouble in these ensuing weeks. But that will be an expensive trade the Tigers would prefer to avoid when any closer who’s available will hardly be invincible.

The Tigers are also keeping an eye on Bruce Rondon at Triple A Toledo and watching for signs Rondon might become a guy who burns away ninth-inning batters minus the drama Valverde often courts.

But as long as Valverde can reasonably locate his fastball, and blend in that higher-speed splitter he threw again Saturday, the Tigers will live with a closer who has at least given them a high-percentage chance at finishing a game successfully.

Take a walk around the block, if necessary, when he pitches. The Tigers are — for now — riding with Valverde.