Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Games 75 & 76

bad migraines and a west coast trip had me sidelined the past few days. Will be back up after tomorrow's game

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Game 74

Thinking the game started at 7 Central time, I decided to get one more game in for Tiger Woods '10 for the Wii. I tune in at 8:05...I decided to go back to playing Tiger Woods.

I feel good about my decision.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Game 73

Ah well, they can't win them all. Still 4 games up in the Central and 9 over .500

But...Joel Zumaya, really?

2 pitches in the 7th, then 28 before getting yanked in the 8th...really?

An 8 pitch walk to Darin Erstad. Erstad and his whopping .147 average...really?

Walking the bases loaded, then walking in the tying run...really?

Joel, if you're not careful, you'll be entering Robertsonville.

Tigers 4 Astros 5

W: Sampson (4-0)
L: Zumaya (3-2)
S: Hawkins (10)

Tigers Record
W - L
41 - 32
1st Place AL Central (4 games ahead of Minnesota)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Game 72

Game 72, or "How Magglio Got His Groove Back"

It started off shaky for Armando Galarraga, giving up 3 runs on a home run in the bottom of the first. But he recovered to only allow 4 more hits, and one run in the next five innings. And with a little help from Magglio Ordonez first home run in...well I can't count that high, I was a Communications major; Armando was able to pick up his first win in 11 starts.

Also joining Maggs in the run producing department, were Ramon Santiago who had a 2 run home run of his own, and Ryan Raburn, who should get some looks from NL Central teams after the way he tore up Cubs pitching this series.

And what would a close Tiger win be without a nail-biting save from Fernando Rodney. Rodney gave up a home run in his second pitch of the 9th. Fernando bounced back to strikeout the next two hitters, but then gave up a double to put the tying run on 2nd. Pinch hitter Geovany Soto entered the game, and was sent packing after striking out to end the game.

A second sweep and 7 in a row and on to Houston.

Tigers 6 Cubs 5
W: Galarraga (4-7)
L: Liily (7-5)
S: Rodney (16)

Tigers Record
W - L
41 - 31
1st Place Al Central (5 games ahead of Minnesota)

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Game 71

Fernando Rodney made the margin of error thinner then most Tigers fans would like to see, but got the job done (maybe with a little help from an expanded strike zone) to close out the game.

1 for 15. That was what the Cubs did with runners in scoring position tonight. 3 innings the Cubs had the bases loaded, and only managed 2 runs. Cubs pitchers gave those two runs back to the Tigers with two bases loaded walks.

The big story of the pre-game was Magglio's freshly trimmed cranium. Did it work? Well 2 for 4 and no GIDP is certainly a step in the right direction. Let's try for a double tomorrow Maggs.

6 in a row, looking for another sweep, a season high 9 games about .500...good time to be a Tiger fan.

Tigers 5 Cubs 3
W: Miner (5-1)
L: Harden (4-4)
S: Rodney (15)

Tigers Record
W - L
40 - 31
1st Place AL Central (5 games ahead of Minnesota)

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Game 70

He's starting to grow on me...

I take back anything bad I've ever said about Ryan Raburn...for now. His walk-off 2 run home run, was the third time the Tigers erased a Cub lead, and gave the Tigers their 5th straight win.

Much like Sunday's game this 2009 team looks to be playing to win until the 27th out. Last year's team you got the feeling that the attitude (looking at you Pudge and Sheff) was one of "Here we go again" instead "Let's get it back" anytime the Tigers lost a late lead.

Not lost in this should be the great games pitched by both Edwin Jackson and Carlos Zambrano. Their lines were pretty similar, with Jackson in line for the win when he left the game. Jackson did not get the win, because for some reason Joel Zumaya decided it would be fun to place a changeup over the middle of the plate. Micah Hoffpauir promptly deposited it into the bleachers in right to put Zambrano in line for the win.

Ryan Raburn hit the home run, but if not for Don Kelly's 9 pitch walk to start the inning. I had no idea who Don Kelly was before his call up, but he's really impressed me with his patience at the plate. And how fitting that someone just as maligned as Raburn in the first few months (who am I kidding he's still pretty maligned), Brandon Lyon gets the win for this one.

Tigers 5 Cubs 4
W: Lyon (3-3)
L: Gregg (2-2)

Tigers Record
W - L
39 - 31
1st Place AL Central (4 games ahead of Minnesota)

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Games 68 & 69

Yesterday MLB decided that I should watch the Mets-Rays and that was it. Mother Nature had other ideas and while it was raining in New York, I was treated to the debut of Alfredo Figaro. All things considered not a bad performance picking up his first carerr victory, and in my mind it immediately places him ahead of Armando Galarraga on the depth chart. Ryan Perry, well that's another story. June has not been kind to the rookie as he surrendered runs in his third straight appearance. His ERA in June and Robertsonian 9.00.

While the bullpen surrendered runs, the bats put them on the board. The heart of the order came up big with Cabrera, Thames, and Kelly going 9 for 14 and driving in in four. Josh Anderson also had a nice day going 3 for 4 and driving in two. Placido Polanco hit his 3rd HR of the season and passed the "on hiatus" Magglio Ordonez on the season total list.

As for today's game it was a battle of the aces, with Justin Verlander going up against Yovanni Gallardo. Verlander gave up a HR on the second batter of the game. He pretty much held the Brewer bats in check allowing only 3 more hits until Craig Counsell lead off the 8th with a home run. All in all he struck out 8 and allowed more than 1 run for the first time at home all season.

At first it looked like it might be another hard luck loss for a Tiger pitcher, as Gallardo was shutting down the recently potent Tiger offense. The Tigers did not get their first hit until a leadoff single by Miguel Cabrera in the 4th. They threatened in the 5th, with runners on 2nd and 3rd with 2 outs, but were unable to cash in. Again in the 6th the Tigers had a opportunity, with 2 on and 2 out, this time Brandon Inge knocked one of the few mistakes Gallardo made all day deep into the left field seats.

That would be all the runs the Tigers needed. Fernando Rodney recorded his 2nd perfect 9th inning in a row, after the near horror show of Thursday night. The Tigers pick-up the sweep and another game on Minnesota heading into tomorrow;s off day

Game 68
Tigers 9 Brewers 5
W: Figaro (1-0)
L: Bush (3-4)

Game 69
Tigers 3 Brewers 2
W: Verlander (8-3)
L: Gallardo (7-4)
S: Rodney (14)

Tigers Record
W - L
38 - 31
1st Place AL Central (4 games ahead of Minnesota)

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Game 67

Billy Mays knows the power of Marcus Thames

The day started with news that had cigarette shops in the area cheering. It ended not with the typical Friday Night Fireworks, but with a light show from Mother Nature and explosions from Tiger bats.

Armando Galarraga struggled. Zach Miner did not. Why is Zach coming out of the bullpen again? A rain delay forced Armando out, which is probably for the best since Brewer bats would have probably done the same thing with more damage to the scoreboard.

Video review
gave Miguel Cabrera a home run, and took one away from recently recalled Dusty Ryan. Both calls looked to be the right one. Marcus Thames has no need for close calls as he hit two home runs that probably caused the rain by tearing through a cloud. I think an even bigger story than the power outburst, is that 7 of the 10 runs were driven in with 2 outs. The lack of the big 2 out hit was a big reason for the losing skid this previous week.

Strains of "The Barber of Seville" should fill the CoPa tomorrow as Alfredo Figaro takes the mound for his MLB debut. I would love to watch it, but since it's one of the Fox 4pm games, I will more than likely be stuck watching whatever NL East team is playing. Stupid MLB Blackout rules, not letting me watch games on my computer.

Tigers 10 Brewers 4 (7 innings)
W: Miner (4-1)
L: Looper (5-4)

Tigers Record
W - L
36 - 31
1st Place AL Central (2 games ahead of Minnesota)

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Game 66

So this is what a win looks like. With the current losing streak, and my being offshore, the last Tiger win that I witnessed was May 31st. Yikes.

Speaking of yikes, Fernando Rodney damn near gave the game away. Walking the bases loaded in the top of the ninth, putting the winning run at the plate, Rodney got a pitch over the plate and tricked Rick Ankiel into hitting into the game ending double play. Maybe Ankiel was having flashbacks of his own control issues, felt sorry for Rodney and bailed him out.

Look what we have here, more than 3 runs scored! The first three batters reached base, and the Tigers plated 4 in the Top of the first. Rick Porcello struggled at times, but that 4 run cushion was all he needed to pick up his team leading 8th win.

While Rodney had an unexcellent adventure in the 9th. Bobby Seay and Brandon Lyon (really?!?) pitched great in relief. The duo combined for only 2 baserunners in the 2.1 innings the pitched, and struck out 3.

Now Prince Fielder and the NL Central leading Brewers come into Detroit fresh off a sweep of Cleveland. A sweep in which they scored 30 runs. And the first two pitchers they face are Armando Galarraga, and a AA player making his MLB Debut...oh boy.

Tigers 6 Cardinals 3
W: Porcello (8-4)
L: Pineiro (5-8)
S: Rodney (13)

Tigers Record
W - L
35 - 31
1st Place AL Central (2 games ahead of Minnesota)

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Game 65

The Tiger's Rally Car

Unlike the quick mercy killing of last night, tonight's game played out like a slow drawn out death.

And hey, wouldn't you know it, another bases loaded walk for a Tiger Pitcher. Zumaya's walk ended up being the run the Cards needed to stay ahead of the Tigers. Edwin Jackson gets saddled with the loss, which is unfair as he pitched well enough.

Curtis Granderson, Miguel Cabrera, and Brandon Inge seem to be the only Tigers able to hit it out of the infield lately, as they combined for 7 of the Tigers 9 hits. Is anyone else concerned that Adam Everett has as many home runs as Magglio right now? Even sadder for Maggs, with that number being 2.

Yet somehow the Tigers are managing to stay ahead in the monkey humping a football of a division called the AL Central. Let's hope Porcello is Italian for stopper, or this could be a loooong weekend for the Tigers.

Tigers 3 Cardinals 4
W: Wellenmeyer (6-6)
L: Jackson (6-4)
S: Franklin (16)

Tigers Record
W - L
34 - 31
1st Place AL Central (2 games ahead of Minnesota)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Game 64

Verlander struggled. Runners left on base. Nate Robertson.

I'm going to go look at my vacation photos, and think of happier times.

Monday, June 15, 2009

While I Was Out

Monday's tougher when you've spent the last week lounging on the beach

A week without the Internet isn't as tough as I thought it would be...especially when you're surrounded with view like the ones above.

When I left Jeremy Bonderman was hurt, Dontrelle Willis couldn't find the strikezone, and the offense was struggling. I guess I didn't miss much. Even better is the fact the lead in first has actually grown. If only the city of Pittsburgh hadn't wreaked havoc on Detroit teams, last week would have been 100% awesome.

So on to St. Louis, and to continued domination for Justin Verlander

Friday, June 05, 2009

Game 53

On a boat. On a boat...

I'll be leaving for Puerto Rico this weekend, as my wife and will be on a cruise around the Caribbean. Judging by the way the Tigers have been playing, maybe its for the best I'll be taking a vacation from them as well.

Another anemic performance from the bats, making a guy having a subpar season so far (Ervin Santana) look super. Maybe Santana and Zach Grienke (7 runs on 9 hits tonight) swapped bodies like in some wacky 80's movie starring Kirk Cameron.

Justin Verlander played the part of Tiger Tourniquet, stopping the bleeding with 8 innings of shutout baseball. But Fernando Rodney came in and blowed it up real good. Give the Tigers credit for not quitting, as the tying run was 90 feet away, but Curtis Granderson couldn't drive him in.

So off to vacation I go, hoping to still see the Tigers in first when I return.

Tigers 1 Angels 2
W: Santana (1-2)
L: Rodney (0-1)
S: Fuentes (15)

Tigers Record:
W - L
28 - 25
1st Place AL Central (2 games ahead of Minnesota)

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Game 52

D-Train, D-railed

Was that Dontrelle's last game in a Tigers uniform? He did have 2 good innings, but that 3rd inning...well the only thing that kept the string of expletives from flying out, was that I was at work.

At least the Tigers have Verlander and Jackson pitching the next two games, right?

Tigers 3 Red Sox 6
W: Wakefield (7-3)
L: Willis (1-3)
S: Papelbon (14)

Tigers Record:
W - L
28 - 24
1st Place AL Central

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Games 50 & 51

Strange past two games for the Tigers offense. Last night 1 run on 9 hits. Tonight 5 runs on 3 hits.

Last night the culprit was double plays, and going 2 for 11 with RISP that did them in. Tonight it was Josh Beckett who held them hitless until the 7th. Only a couple walks and 3 errors let the Tigers get some runs in.

As for the pitching the past two games, yesterday Rick Porcello and Ryan Perry looked like rookies. Porcello's win streak came to an end, while Perry walked 3 in a about an innings work. Tonight Armando Galarraga wasn't terrible, but he really didn't make a case to stay in the rotation when Jeremy Bonderman returns Monday. My guess is that Monday's double header will be Armando's last start, barring injury or the Tigers shutting down Porcello later in the year.

In the series finale, its Wakefield vs. Willis. Wakefield has either been lights out or blown out this year, with his May being the latter. Let's hope for the Tigers and Dontrelle that remains the case.

Tigers 1 Red Sox 5
W: Matsuzaka (1-3)
L: Porcello (6-4)

Tigers 5 Red Sox 10
W: Beckett (6-2)
L: Galarraga (3-6)

Tigers Record:
W - L
28 - 23
1st Place AL Central (3.5 games ahead of Minnesota & Chicago)