Game 70: Tigers at Cubs

PREGAME: The Tigers will try and make it a happy Father’s Day by completing a sweep against the Cubs. Kenny Rogers will make his first attempt at 200 career wins while Mark Prior will make his first attempt at starting this season.

We know that Pudge Rodriguez will get the day off, but I’d hope that Jim Leyland wouldn’t tinker too much with a lineup that has been crushing the ball in the first two games of the series

And on a non-baseball note, I’d like to wish Happy Father’s Day to all fathers today. There’s just something about baseball and it’s ability to bridge generations that make days like today special.

POSTGAME: Congratulations of course go to Kenny Rogers on securing his 200th victory. He did it while being dominant in one of baseball’s most historic venues on Father’s Day. I think the script is complete.

Of course his win was overshadowed by a power display by, well, everyone except Magglio Ordonez and Placido Polanco. If you had told me that in mid June Brandon Inge would be leading the team in homers with Marcus Thames close on his heels, I’d have thought the season would be a disaster. Instead, the Tigers have 6 players with 10-15 homers and Carlos Guillen hovering at 9. I haven’t done any research, but I can’t imagine too many times when the #7 and #8 hitter combine for 4 homers in a game.

Again we saw the talents of Curtis Granderson who picked up only one single in the series but still picked up 16 total bases. And Chris Shelton continues to look much improved. His first homer was a bomb to straight away centerfield. A .900 OPS hitter in the bottom 3rd will definitely help the offense.

26 Comments

  1. Chris

    June 18, 2006 at 12:17 pm

    For the Granderson fans, which I’m one, here’s a link to the Tigers WPA stats so far this year:

    http://www.fangraphs.com/winss.aspx?team=Tigers

  2. billfer

    June 18, 2006 at 1:38 pm

    Rod Allen after Shelton’s homer:

    “They beatin’ on Prior like he stole something!”

  3. Scott

    June 18, 2006 at 1:41 pm

    I hope they leave Prior in for awhile……this looks like it could be fun

  4. Paul

    June 18, 2006 at 2:42 pm

    Rod and Mario are doin this one?? Damn, mlb.tv is giving me GN’s call.

  5. Paul

    June 18, 2006 at 2:43 pm

    LOL, BOMBTASTIC!!!! Now Thames and Inge.

  6. Rob

    June 18, 2006 at 2:58 pm

    You can put it on the board…..YES!

    Hope those Sox fans are enjoying watching the Tigers come to town and pound the Cubbies. Looks like #200 for Rogers is well in hand at the moment.

  7. Paul

    June 18, 2006 at 3:24 pm

    Holy crap, 8 homers!!!!!

  8. Greg

    June 18, 2006 at 3:24 pm

    Big Red is back!

    I don’t have any numbers in front of me, but my recollection is that the Gambler has historically faded late in seasons (sidebar, Inge is back too now). Does any have any thoughts on keeping his pitch counts down? I hoped he wouldn’t even come out for the 7th, but now he’s doubling down the line in the 8th.

  9. DTW

    June 18, 2006 at 4:14 pm

    WOW
    I don’t think i’ve ever seen a game in which 15 runs were scored and all were RBI’d in on homers. Hey, Big Red, welcome back from a two month vacation. Congrats where they are due to Roger’s for his 200th and Prior for proving he’s worthless.

  10. Brian A.

    June 18, 2006 at 4:18 pm

    i’m getting really annoyed at the “oh well the tigers aren’t any good against teams above .500” junk. The fact of the matter is that even after Baseball Prospectus adjusts for strength of schedule and park factors the tigers have the second best record in baseball behind the yankees. The yankees come in at 41.5-24.5 and the Tigers have 40.2-28.8.

  11. Chris

    June 18, 2006 at 4:19 pm

    Rogers has actually done slightly better in the second half:

    http://retrosheet.org/boxesetc/Lrogek0010.htm

    Robertson is the one who has had the biggest prolems in the second half:

    http://retrosheet.org/boxesetc/Lroben0010.htm

    Hopefully Leyland, Rogers, etc. can get that worked out this year!

  12. Brian A.

    June 18, 2006 at 4:21 pm

    here’s a link to the complete standings i just referenced, however I think it’s subscription only.

    http://www.baseballprospectus......ndings.php

  13. Rob

    June 18, 2006 at 4:26 pm

    Kenny Rogers has faded in the 2nd half big time the last few years. However, he’s also been pitching in the scorching heat of Arlington, Texas in July and August. He has said that the heat really took a toll on him. Hopefully in a more moderate climate his body will hold up better.

    I also look for Jim Leyland to sneak Ledezma in for a start or two as the 6th starter to give everybody an extra day off.

  14. Greg

    June 18, 2006 at 4:28 pm

    Good point about the heat, and I hope Ledezma does get a few spot “6th-starter” starts. In Leyland we trust.

  15. Chris

    June 18, 2006 at 4:40 pm

    Did I post something wrong?

  16. billfer

    June 18, 2006 at 4:44 pm

    Chris – nope nothing wrong. My spam catcher flags comments with multiple links for moderation. I just saw it an approved it now.

    Also, as an FYI if you post something and it doesn’t show up, contact me and let me know. I’m getting about 75 spam comments caught a day. The filters are pretty good, but occasionally a real comment gets marked as spam.

  17. Rob

    June 18, 2006 at 4:47 pm

    From 2003-2005, here are Kenny’s numbers:

    pre-All Star game: 29-12, 3.87 ERA
    post-All Star game: 16-13, 4.80 ERA

    He’s 27-8 April-June and 18-17 from July on.

  18. Taylor

    June 18, 2006 at 5:26 pm

    One thing you gotta like about Leyland though is he uses his bullpen well. Rogers has historically slowed down in the second half, but with the way Leyland is taking care of the starters I wouldn’t be surprised to see them handle a late season push.

    I’m sure our starters are at the bottom of the league in complete games and I think that is a good thing.

    Also, Shelton is looking better and better. His swing is much flatter and more fluid. I hope this hitting surge continues.

  19. Paul

    June 18, 2006 at 5:32 pm

    i’m getting really annoyed at the “oh well the tigers aren’t any good against teams above .500″ junk. The fact of the matter is that even after Baseball Prospectus adjusts for strength of schedule and park factors the tigers have the second best record in baseball behind the yankees. The yankees come in at 41.5-24.5 and the Tigers have 40.2-28.8.

    Ya and the Yankees just finished getting owned by Washington.

  20. Chris

    June 18, 2006 at 5:46 pm

    Ok, billfer, thanks. I was wondering what the deal was.

    One link per post. 🙂

  21. Scott

    June 18, 2006 at 7:00 pm

    well, I gotta admit – this was fun today! Prediction: Cubs ain’t gonna win this year…… 🙂 Ok, on to the Brew-crew….let’s scarf some beers and kick some butt!! And it was wonderful to see the Yankees lose, too. All around a pretty good day…..

  22. Joey C.

    June 18, 2006 at 9:30 pm

    That Rod Allen line is freakin priceless.

  23. walewander

    June 19, 2006 at 3:24 am

    Wow! Sorry that I missed this one…

  24. Kyle J

    June 19, 2006 at 8:38 am

    If anyone happens to be close enough to do it, I highly recommend going to a game in Milwaukee. We took the ferry over from Muskegon last September for a game vs. the Padres. Interesting stadium; great atmosphere. Parking lot full of tailgaters. Nice downtown w/ lots of great beer.

  25. Kurt

    June 19, 2006 at 10:44 am

    I saw a game at old County Stadium. (Nothing like sitting seemingly 20 feet behind home plate but feeling like you’re 200 feet above it). I’ve also attended a few games at Lambeau. While the atmosphere isn’t the same per se, the friendiness of the fans and the laid-back demeanor before the game sure did.

  26. Sport Billy

    June 26, 2006 at 2:57 pm

    This is eaxactly what I was talking about on my blog. I appreciate the work you put into this and I look forward to reading more.