Game 103: Tigers at Twins

PREGAME: Brad Radke has owned the Tigers for as long as he’s been in the league. But a lot of those Tiger teams just weren’t very good. That isn’t the case this year. The Tigers have beat Radke the two times they’ve faced him this year. In fact Pudge Rodriguez has the highest batting average against Radke of any player with 50 or more at-bats and he’s knocked him for 8 homers. Unfortunately Pudge won’t be playing tonight as he recovers from a bruised thumb.

Fortunately the player with the second highest batting average against Radke will be manning the clean-up position. Magglio has managed a .406 career mark against Radke. Other Tigers with success off of Radke, though in a smaller number of at-bats, are Craig Monroe, Carlos Guillen, and Dmitri Young. Young will be playing first base in place of Chris Shelton.

Taking the ball for the Tigers will be Nate Robertson. Robertson has faced the Twins twice this year and has allowed 3 runs in 12 innings. An interesting match-up will be Robertson and Joe Mauer. Mauer has been hitting the entire league this year, what with him having the best batting average and all, but the left hander has struggled with Robertson in his limited opportunities going 1 for 12.

If you’re looking for the Twins perspective, head over to Stick and Ball Guy. Here is the link for their Game Post. I read through last night’s and was impressed with the knowledge and reasonable-ness (word?) of the commentors.

Game Time 7:10

POSTGAME: Once again a big early lead ends up getting interesting. True, much of the big early lead was built on ground balls that missed everyone, but they weren’t all fluky hits. (Okay, Inge probably had the luckiest 3 hit night of his career) Granderson’s and Young’s homers were both legit of course, and the the Tigers had 3 other balls driven to the wall.

I know there was probably some nervousness about Jones, but he actually did nothing wrong last night. the offense against him came from bunts, bloops, and dribblers.

This was the first time I’ve seen Pat Neshek, and I’m still confused.

Fortunately the Tigers are going into a Santana match-up with the series already in hand.