ALDS Game 3: Yankees at Tigers

PREGAME: We’ve all been waiting a very long time for this, a Tiger playoff game in Detroit. A raucous Comerica Park crowd will be cheering for the Tigers to take a lead in the series.

The Tigers will send out Kenny Rogers. Rogers post season record has been well documented. He’s allowed 20 runs in 20 1/3 innings spanning 8 games. The good news is that he’s comfortable in Comerica Park with a 3.27 ERA and only 6 homers allowed in 102 innings. The bad news is that many of the Yankees have tremendous career numbers against Rogers. Giambi (.435BA), A-Rod (.556BA), and Posada (.500 BA) are just a few of the big guns that the Yankees will trot out.

On the other side will be Randy Johnson and his gimpy back. Johson has had no problem carving up the Tigers this year. In 2 starts he’s allowed only 4 runs and 6 hits while fanning 12. However, 3 of those hits have been homers. The left-hander might just be what Magglio Ordonez and Pudge Rodriguez need to get going. Pudge is 0-fer the series while Ordonez has been limited to a double and a walk.

Game Time 8:09

And I’ll be there so don’t expect any updates for a while.

POSTGAME: It was an amazing night, and I have a lot to comment on. But I’m sleepy so the big honkin wrap-up will have to wait until the morning. And by morning, I mean the morning that comes after I fall asleep.


  1. Anne

    October 6, 2006 at 4:03 pm

    Hey, just wanted to ask everyone going to the game tonight to cheer extra loud for those of us who can’t be there. Enjoy a beverage of your choice and maybe drink a toast to the Tigers, we’ll be doing the same at home!

  2. Brian A.

    October 6, 2006 at 6:38 pm

    Wish i could be there tonight. I have a good feeling about it though.

  3. Pete

    October 6, 2006 at 6:54 pm

    Nice of the Twins to show up for their series…

  4. Alan

    October 6, 2006 at 7:09 pm

    Now the victor of the Yankees and Tigers have to contend with an Oakland team that will have plenty of rest from their quick series with the Twins. I didn’t see this sweep coming. The Tigers should have truly won the Division.

  5. Alan

    October 6, 2006 at 7:11 pm

    Maybe, the rest of the Yankees won’t show up either.

    DETROIT — Owner George Steinbrenner was one New York Yankee who was not present Friday night.

    “He doesn’t really travel to post-season games anymore,” said team spokesman Rick Cerrone. “That may change if we advance.”

    The Boss is 76. He has been principal owner of the Yankees for 33 years, and for much of his reign he was constantly in the news for firing managers, arguing with players and spending huge amounts of money to make the Yankees winners.

    He is living a quieter life these days. In August, the New York Times described him as having a puffy face, limping on a painful knee and needing help to mount the podium at the groundbreaking for the new Yankee Stadium.

  6. Paul

    October 6, 2006 at 7:22 pm

    I gotta avoid word of the game until 9:30 central in order to keep it fresh when I go home and watch it on DVR, so I’m outta here until about 11 pm central.

  7. Joey C.

    October 6, 2006 at 7:47 pm

    I’m hearing a lot about how people think tonight’s pitching matchup favors the Tigers. I have to say, tonight’s matchup makes me real nervous. ARod’s record vs. Kenny and Johnson’s ability to absolutely shut a team down (I don’t care how his back is feeling or how old he is) plus a possible let down after that great win yesterday…

    I’m pretty nervous.

    And on that awesome note…

    GO TIGERS!!!

  8. Paul

    October 6, 2006 at 7:49 pm

    “I don’t care how his back is feeling or how old he is”

    Joey, you should care, they are legitimate concerns. I’m not saying we’re gonna roll, but those are big things. As for A-Rod v. Kenny, he’s 1 of 9 and really, really struggling right now.

  9. redsox2004

    October 6, 2006 at 8:09 pm

    Just so you know…all of Red Sox nation is behind you tonight. Go Tigers!!

  10. Alan

    October 6, 2006 at 8:19 pm

    Man that Jeter is something. What does he have like one out in 3 games so far. Maybe they should intentionally walk him.

    Does anyone know a strong FM station that carries the Tigers game on the radio in the Lansing area? I don’t get ESPN and am trying to follow it on

  11. Lou

    October 6, 2006 at 8:21 pm

    You know, the Twins didn’t play much better than the Tigers during that last week or so of the season. But, on the other hand, I don’t believe in momentum. I think Oakland really has been a great team in the second half. They’ll be scary in the ALCS for either remaining team.

  12. Lou

    October 6, 2006 at 8:22 pm

    This line up is wacky. But, I think I like it.

  13. Cameron in Singapore

    October 6, 2006 at 8:32 pm

    Does Posada ever make an out??? Or even swing at single a bad pitch?

  14. Cameron in Singapore

    October 6, 2006 at 8:32 pm

    I meant, “swing at a single bad pitch.”

  15. Steve

    October 6, 2006 at 8:48 pm

    Alan, On MLB you can buy an audio package and listen to the home crew on the radio. I usually buy it for the season, its about 14-15 bucks.


  16. Alan

    October 6, 2006 at 8:54 pm

    3-0 Let’s go Gambler! You got to know when to hold em!

  17. Alan

    October 6, 2006 at 8:55 pm

    I got 730 AM to work and they had old Ernie Harwell announcing the 3 run 2nd.

  18. Kurt

    October 6, 2006 at 8:56 pm

    I may be stuck at work during the game, but I had Ernie Harwell with me on the radio, the Tigers scored three runs, and that was pretty fun.

  19. Taylor

    October 6, 2006 at 8:57 pm

    This is too sweet… Come on Kenny! Let’s hold ’em for a few innings.

  20. freeman

    October 6, 2006 at 9:00 pm

    What’s up with the navy blue rally rags? They’re too dark and can’t really be seen, especially at night! White or orange would have been much more appropriate.

  21. Cameron in Singapore

    October 6, 2006 at 9:22 pm

    Ahhh yes!!!
    Just heard Ernie make the “house by the side of the road” call on Giambi…

  22. Steve

    October 6, 2006 at 9:22 pm

    It seems like the fans are alllllllllll over A-Rod.

    Kenny looks decent out there tonight

  23. Anne

    October 6, 2006 at 9:28 pm

    Oh man, is this sweet or what? A 3-0 lead AND Ernie Harwell. OK, anyone old enough to remember hearing Harwell when you were a kid, admit it: didn’t you used to wonder how he knew where all those fans were from when they caught a foul ball? πŸ™‚

  24. Alan

    October 6, 2006 at 9:31 pm

    We need to get Johnson out of there. Work the pitch counts guys. A Yankees weakness is between the starter and Rivera.

  25. Steve

    October 6, 2006 at 9:40 pm

    Sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet K on BW

  26. Steve

    October 6, 2006 at 9:43 pm


  27. Anne

    October 6, 2006 at 9:45 pm

    Is this possible? Rogers is looking stronger as the game goes on?! This is too much fun. 5 innings was the best I hoped for from him. Let’s keep holding that lead.

  28. Alan

    October 6, 2006 at 9:46 pm

    Yippee for the Gambler! Okay Tigers this is the inning to get one more on Johnson.

  29. Steve

    October 6, 2006 at 9:51 pm

    That is total cheese

  30. Taylor

    October 6, 2006 at 9:51 pm

    That was a fair ball. Blown Call.

  31. Steve

    October 6, 2006 at 9:52 pm

    What is that ump there for? a $500 game check, that stinks

  32. Taylor

    October 6, 2006 at 9:57 pm

    Wow… Another questionable one. How can he make that call staring at Polanco’s back?

  33. Alan

    October 6, 2006 at 9:57 pm

    I am not watching the game on tv but the radio is saying that they keep replaying the chalk dust flying up on that Polanco hit. If it hits the chalk it is not foul, Mr. Umpire.

  34. Steve

    October 6, 2006 at 10:16 pm


  35. Shawn in Tokyo

    October 6, 2006 at 10:16 pm

    Wooooo hooooooo!

  36. Anne

    October 6, 2006 at 10:16 pm

    2 more runs in! Go Tigs!! Is it just me, or does it seem they do all their scoring with 2 outs?

  37. Joey C.

    October 6, 2006 at 10:17 pm


    Yes! Guillen, Pudge, Casey chase Johnson out of the game!

    And I’ve never seen the Gambler this fired up. He just looks great.

  38. Taylor

    October 6, 2006 at 10:18 pm

    2 out rallys! Can’t beat clutch hitting! This is too good…

  39. Steve

    October 6, 2006 at 10:20 pm

    Does anyone recall what Kenny has done in previous post seasons? I know we have enough stat weenies on this site to have that info available.

  40. Alan

    October 6, 2006 at 10:23 pm

    Go Gambler. Hold that 5 run lead.

  41. SPF

    October 6, 2006 at 10:24 pm

    From a Twins fan: Keep it up. The crushing disappointment of being rudely swept aside would be alleviated a bit if the Yanks go down.

  42. Anne

    October 6, 2006 at 10:26 pm

    Rogers has 0 post-season wins, and something like an ERA of 8.18. Kinda makes you wonder who this imposter is and what has he done with Kenny?

  43. Steve

    October 6, 2006 at 10:31 pm

    Jon Miller just said he is having the game of his life tonight. Well said, very true and really quite timely

  44. Shawn in Tokyo

    October 6, 2006 at 10:35 pm

    With Grandy’s homerun, I am just laughing at the screen…unbelievable…

  45. Steve

    October 6, 2006 at 10:51 pm

    Huge love from the crowd on Kenny, I heard Bilfer and Adam yelling. πŸ˜‰

  46. Alan

    October 6, 2006 at 10:53 pm

    Why is Leyland using Zumaya when tomorrow may be closer than 6-0? Does he not trust Rodney to hold a 6-0 lead? I don’t understand this move.

  47. Darrin

    October 6, 2006 at 10:54 pm

    …from a Yankee fan living in Detroit: Congrats on a fine series. Clearly the Tigers are showing that they are playing very well as a team. A word of warning, though: As you move forward against the A’s, do not expect anything like this again from Kenny Rogers. He will break your heart in the end.

  48. Alan

    October 6, 2006 at 10:55 pm


    You talk like this is over. The Yankees can come back. Remember Detroit lost 3 in a row at home against the Kansas City Royals (losers of 100 games) and tomorrow Bonderman starts who was part of that collapse.

  49. Mike F

    October 6, 2006 at 10:55 pm

    In Wyoming and following the game on MLB’s GameDay (I already plan on buying the MLBradio package for next year, shoulda bought when I moved). I pulled this off there:

    12 .583 1 1 1.782
    9 .556 1 1 1.747

    The first is the oh so awesome Jeter.
    The second is our own Carlos Guillen.

    This is all in the Yankee’s half of the 8th (after Jeter’s walk) and Carlos has another at bat coming up.

  50. Joey C.

    October 6, 2006 at 10:59 pm

    Yeah Darrin, I’m knocking on wood having read that post.

    I got one thing to say:


    That guy was in the freakin zone!

  51. Alan

    October 6, 2006 at 11:01 pm

    I sure hope that Leyland doesn’t use Jones in the 9th. We need him fresh for tomorrow. You don’t see Torre using Rivera.

  52. Darrin

    October 6, 2006 at 11:06 pm


    Of course the Yankees COULD come back, but they will not.

    There is a particular “poetry” to baseball that is very unique, and series’ outcomes often reach a point where the winner becomes easily predictable.

    Watching the Yankees in the playoffs every year for the last dozen years, I’ve become finely tuned to this mojo and the Tigers definitely have it.

    Naturally, I’d love to see the Yankees come back, but Detroit will wrap the series up tomorrow.

    You’ll come back tomorrow and thank me. πŸ˜‰

  53. Steve

    October 6, 2006 at 11:06 pm

    Darrin, Its 15 bucks to get them all on the radio, you get to pick home, amay or ESPN. Spend the cash its worth it now.


  54. Alan

    October 6, 2006 at 11:10 pm


    Prior to the end of the season when the Tigers were in a pennant race with Minnesota, it was said that Detroit would almost have preferred the Wild Card if their ultimate goal is the World Series, because it would be easier to upset New York in a 5 game series than a 7 game one. Do you agree with that?

  55. Steve

    October 6, 2006 at 11:11 pm

    I do not understand Jones being in there. What is the thinking here?

  56. Alan

    October 6, 2006 at 11:16 pm


    All I can think is that Leyland wants to keep Jones in shape and he figured a short one inning wouldn’t tire him out. There are cases where people get stale.

  57. Neel

    October 6, 2006 at 11:20 pm

    GREAT WIN!!! The Gambler comes through in the clutch…I am so giddy right now!

  58. hawk

    October 6, 2006 at 11:24 pm

    one of the sweetest games I have seen in a long time!! Would have loved to see KR get a complete game – – he was pumped!

  59. Darrin

    October 6, 2006 at 11:25 pm


    I do agree with the philosophy that the Yankees are more vulnerable in a 5 game series, and history proves that point. Since ’95, the Yanks are 7-4 (looking dangerously close to 7-5 by this time tomorrow) in the ALDS. But they are 6-1 in the ALCS. That’s a significant difference.

    As to whether the Tigers preferred it this way….I’m not too sure of that.

    Bottom line: Baseball is the only sport that is utterly unpredictable. Every team beats every other team. In fact, the team with the best record very rarely wins the World Series.

    A lot of Yankee fans were relieved that they got the Tigers and not have to face the Twins. I told them all to be very careful what you wish for….

  60. Pete

    October 6, 2006 at 11:28 pm

    Great game tonight. I would not have used either Zumaya or Jones tonight. That was a bit strange. But if you go to Rodney or Grilli, it is not inconceivable that the Yankees get a big rally going. In the end, I don’t think the three pitches Zumaya threw or the 10 that Jones threw will hurt that much. Tomorrow Walker is probably the first guy out of the pen. Zumaya and Jones can each pitch one inning tomorrow. I do not want to see Rodney or Grilli or anyone else tomorrow. If we get ANYTHING out of Bonderman — and I’d settle for six innings, four earned runs — we will have a good chance because we should score runs against Wright, and our bullpen is better than theirs.

    In case anyone missed the ESPN telecast tonight, here is what you missed:

    1. Kenny Rogers’ career postseason numbers are very bad.
    2. Most of the Yankees have great career stats against Kenny Rogers.
    3. Kenny Rogers has bad career stats against the Yankees. (Imagine that!)
    4. Repeat 1, 2, and 3.

    They kept showing these stats and Kenny kept mowing them down. He was great to watch. I’ve never seen him so fired up. The way he reacted to every ball and strike call (he wanted everything between the batters boxes to be called a strike), and the way he sprinted over to pick up Abreu’s foul bunt in the 8th. Just delightful to watch. I think I speak for the board when I say I really, really, really do not want to have to go back to New York for game 5. Let’s wrap it up tomorrow!!!!!

  61. Andrew

    October 6, 2006 at 11:34 pm

    I tell ya what. Christmas came early this year. Kenny Rogers pitches the game of his life against the “best lineup in baseball.” Ernie Harwell calls a couple of innings on ESPN (and shows how crappy a job of announcing they do in comparison to him) and I got to hear him give his two different strikeout calls one more time. The only thing missing was a Tiger homer and Ernie saying “looonnngg gone!”

    Our bullpen is fresh. I say if Bonderman gets in trouble early (even in the first 3 innings) you yank him and use Ledezma. Lets not take any chances – if Bondy looks like he doesn’t have it lets not take a wait and see approach.

    This series is far from over. If any team could win two straight to take the series – it would be the Yankees.

    If we can stake Bonderman to an early lead and he is hitting his spots – oh man things would be looking good. Like I said, if he isn’t on, don’t waste time letting the Yankees put up a bunch of runs. Our bullpen is well rested and we have some guys who can eat up the middle innings.

    Great, great, game.

  62. T Smith

    October 6, 2006 at 11:37 pm


    That was the best pitching performance I have ever seen from Kenny Rogers! Living in the NY metropolitan area, and listening to Mike and Mad Dog program this afternoon, they both absolutley dismissed Rogers. And I quote, “…there is NO WAY Kenny Rogers will beat the Yankees. If the Yankees do get beat, the score will be 9-8, but Kenny Rogers is not capable of pitching to the Yankees…”

    Congrats, Kenny. I’m happy for you. You make these pompus NY commentators look silly. I can’t wait to tune in tommorow and see how they spin this one….

    By the way, I almost over being swept by the Royals. I know we have one, and probably two tough games left in this series. But the Tiger team that showed up tonight is the team I watched all year, pre Aug 7. I have no problem facing ANY TEAM if our pre Aug 7 Tigers show up to play.

  63. Ryan S

    October 6, 2006 at 11:41 pm

    I think Leyland went with Zumaya and Jones partly to keep the shut out in tact. That goose egg looks pretty shocking against this lineup. I’m watching all this post game coverage and all the commentators are pretty much stunned. The Baseball Tonight crew was interesting. Karl Ravich seemed really sad – like his favorite team just lost (HAH!). John Kruk did a nice 360 and accused the Yankees of giving up (HAH! – again). The best part was Gary Matthews Jr, who refused to take Ravich’s bait about the Yankees not coming through when they should have and instead gave all the credit to Kenny. Love it!!!

  64. T Smith

    October 6, 2006 at 11:46 pm

    By the way Anne, as a kid, growing up with Erine Harwell, I always did wonder how he knew where the person who caught the foul ball was from!!! It was absolutly amazing!

    I was very young, and always completely credulous! Hearing Ernie tonight brought back great memories. “…Here’s the pitch…there’s a long fly ball! Deep left field! This one might be! IT IS! GONE!!!!”

    God, I loved that guy!

  65. Joey the K

    October 6, 2006 at 11:58 pm


    Loud cheers were heard throughout north Portland tonight, of course they were all from my house!

    I had a door to door solicitor (for switching to clean energy sources) come to my door, I said I don’t know what you’re selling but you’re gonna have to make your pitch inside, the Tigers are winning and Kenny is throwing a gem! Once he saw the HD tv he stuck around for a little bit!

  66. Marshall in DC

    October 7, 2006 at 12:00 am

    Kenny piched from his heart and it showed . . .You saw a guy who is close to the end of his carrier knowing that days like these will be comming to an end soon. Like an old dog going back to his favorite swmming hole for one last dip in life – the fire burned in his eyes and you coudl tell he was living a dream.

    Don’t see many performances like that in your lifetime.


  67. Nate A.

    October 7, 2006 at 12:07 am

    So I had to go out to catch the game on TV tonite, but it was worth it. At the BWW in Bay City here, all eyes were on the game and the roar was deafaning for each run scored and each “K” Kenny racked up.

    And WOW was he in controll tonite. The look of confusion on the Yank faces at the plate had me grinning the entire nite. I was shocked by how many fastballs Rogers was throwing, and apparently so was NY. Then once the boys from the Bronx thought they had him pegged for another heater, the changeup drops right out of the zone as they lunge limply at the pitch. Loved every minute of it!

    Guillen continues to impress(MVP!). Granderson turning in some excellent pressure at bats. Polanco, Pudge, and Casey are doing their parts. Inge is the only Tiger who has not performed yet.

    I’m gonna have to agree with the call on PPs LF line hit. definately hit chalk. And while the OF umpire was busy dodging the ball, the 3B upire was right on the line and signalled foul. Not sure how they BOTH managed to miss that call. Glad it didn’t matter. And we may have gotten away with one at 3B earlier with Pudge barely beatinig the throw from RF.

    My only argument in the game was Jones in the 9th. With a 6 run lead, I’d rather have seen Ledezma(there were 2 lefties of the first 3 hitters in the 9th) or Grilli on the mound, and only keep Jones on alert. But with only 10 pitches from Jones, it’s not so bad.

    And to keep my karma meter up, as much as I hate to admit it, that near DP that Granderson hit with Cano diving behind Second and blindly fliping to Jeter was very pretty. Better still that Grandy beat it out and later scored after that lucky pickoff turned stolen base.

    But YOWZA! What a game! Bondo has got to hold on tomorrow! I don’t wanna have to take this back in the Bronx.

  68. ron

    October 7, 2006 at 12:18 am


  69. Darrin

    October 7, 2006 at 12:20 am

    WILL commit suicide? They already ARE!

  70. T Smith

    October 7, 2006 at 12:47 am

    Joe Morgan might commit suicide if the Tigers win tommorow. He could clearly not contain his dissapointment in this rout. In fact, he was extremely depressed–and stunned. At least the other guy finally conceded some kudus to the Tigers & Kenny (around the 7th inning).

    I love this.

  71. cyn1961

    October 7, 2006 at 1:10 am

  72. Sam

    October 7, 2006 at 1:26 am

    At the game tonight with the Family. We had 2 Yankee fans 3 rows behind us. They had a smug look on their face through the early innings. Once it became 5-0 and the crowd really started letting loose, I turned around to look at those two.

    The look on their face was worht the price of admission. They were truely dumbfounded like they could not believe what was happening. My wife then, without prompting from me, passed them back a napkin.

    They looked at her and asked her what it was for, she told them to wipe their tears (I was so proud of her).

    When the Gambler came out of the game in the 8th it was one of the best, if not the best, moment I ever witnessed at a ball game.

    Let’s enjoy this guys.


  73. Paul

    October 7, 2006 at 3:48 am

    I’m f**king bombed, but I’m sooooo happy. Tonight was awesome. Let’s get it goin tomorrow, JB!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!