ALDS Preview: Tigers and Yankees

by billfer on October 2, 2006 · 38 comments

in 2006 Season,Playoffs,Previews

In my mind I kind of laid out a long preview of the upcoming series. Fortunately for me, some other bloggers already beat me to it. As it is, it will be a much shorter preview while I lean on their work.

The Teams

In Lee’s preview, he notes that the Yankees and Tigers are mirrors of each other in a way. The Tigers are first in run prevention and 5th in run production, while the Yankees are 1st in run production and 5th in run prevention.

The Yankees outscored their opponents by 163 runs while the Tigers had a positive margin of 144 runs.

The Yankees sport a lineup of All Stars and future Hall of Famers. Their double play combination finished 2nd and 3rd in batting average, besting the effort of Whitaker and Trammell in 1983 when they finished 3rd and 4th. Position by position the Tigers don’t have a player on the field in which they have an advantage over the Yankees.

The Tigers offense is adequate though given the level at which their pitching has performed. However, as Kurt notes those pitchers haven’t been particularly effective this year against the Yankees with the exception of Wil Ledezma who won’t be in the rotation.

The Tigers rotation will be Nate Robertson, Justin Verlander, Kenny Rogers, and Jeremy Bonderman. Unlike many I don’t feel that the order of the rotation will be that significant. All 4 pitchers are above average, and all 4 have question marks. Kenny Rogers has pitched in 6 post seasons with an ERA at 8.85. Justin Verlander, Jeremy Bonderman, and Nate Robertson are all in unchartered territory in terms of experience and workload.

The Yankees will start with Chien Ming Wang followed by Mike Mussina. Both have had outings where they completely shut down the Tigers. After that though things could get a little easier, especially if Randy Johnson isn’t able to pitch. The Yankees will then be turning to Jaret Wright and Cory Lidle.

The Season Series

The Yankees lead the season series 5-2 over Detroit. Those games include taking 3 of 4 in Comerica and 2 of 3 in the Bronx Tiger fans can probably take solace in the fact that 5 of the 7 games were decided by 2 runs or less, or went to extra innings. They should probably be concerned in that their only 2 wins were late inning comebacks against non Mariano Rivera pitchers.

Over the 7 games the Tigers were outscored 38-23.

Game 1: May 29th – Yankees 4, Tigers 0

This was a matinee match-up of Jeremy Bonderman and Randy Johnson. Both pitchers were very good, but Randy Johnson was very better. The only offense the Tigers could muster was a Carlos Guillen double and Ivan Rodriguez single.

Game 2: May 30th – Yankees 11, Tigers 6

Roman Colon was making his first start in place of Mike Maroth. It didn’t go so well as he was lifted in the 3rd inning after giving up 5 runs. The Tigers chipped away at the lead, and in the process “Gum Time” was born. The Tigers tied the score in the 8th off of Kyle Farnsworth. Mariano Rivera pitched 3 scoreless innings and in the meantime things fell apart in Todd Jones second inning to the tune of 5 runs. The thing is, the Tigers had a chance to win it in the 8th with Craig Monroe on 3rd with 1 out. Strike outs by Curtis Granderson and Placido Polanco ended the rally. By the same token, the Yankees nearly pushed across a run in the 9th when Robinson Cano tried to score on a wild pitch but was tagged out by Rodney.

Game 3: May 31st – Yankees 6, Tigers 1

This game was delayed an hour due to rain. I remember because I was there. Mike Mussina was an Alex Rodriguez throwing error away from a shut out in this one. The Tigers managed only 7 baserunners yet hit into 3 double plays. Nate Robertson was nearly up to the task before allowing 2 runs in both the 8th and 9th innings and falling 1 out short of a complete game.

Game 4: June 1st – Tigers 7, Yankees 6

Once again the Tigers spotted the Yankees 5 runs. This time it was Justin Verlander and a bleeding cut on his hand. Verlander made it through 5 innings though as his teammates chipped away at the lead. The Tigers scored 2 runs in the 9th when a Marcus Thames walk was followed by 3 singles by Pudge Rodriguez, Magglio Ordonez, and Carlos Guillen. The damage came off of Kyle Farnsworth because Mariano Rivera wasn’t available after hurting his back when he went to tie his shoes.

Game 5: August 30th – Yankees 2, Tigers 0

It was a typical Nate Robertson start where he allows some baserunners, but only a couple actually score. Meanwhile, Chien Ming Wang pitched 7 2/3 innings on only 3 hits and 2 walks. Scott Proctor and Mariano Rivera cleaned up the last inning and a third. The Yankees easily took the front end of the doubleheader.

Game 6: August 30th – Tigers 5, Yankees 3

The Tigers actually took a lead in this game with a run in the 2nd and a run in the 4th. Things were looking great for Wil Ledezma until a Sal Fasano HBP and a Melky Cabrera double put runners on 2nd and 3rd. Fernando Rodney relieved and allowed a double to Derek Jeter who would later come around to score. The Tigers were stymied on scoring chances in the 7th and 8th innings. With Rivera unavailable after pitching in the first game of the double header, Brandon Inge and Curtis Granderson drew walks to set-up a 3 run homer by Monroe in the 9th inning.

Game 7: August 31st – Yankees 6, Tigers 4

It was Jeremy Bonderman against Randy Johnson and once again Johnson out pitched Bonderman. Jeremy was knocked around by Alex Rodriguez while Randy Johnson carved up the Tigers and allowed only 4 hits. Marcus Thames 2nd homer with a man on in the 9th made things more interesting. But after Ordonez greeted Mariano Rivera with a double, the Tigers were retired in order.

What The Experts Are Saying

It’s pretty much unanimous that the Yankees are going to win, it’s just a matter of how quickly. Deadspin has the round-up with the consensus being a 4 game series.

Baseball Prospectus has a very well researched preview in which they take the Yankees in 4, but acknowledge that the Tigers really do have a chance.

What do I think

As I compiled this I have a hard time picking the Tigers in this series. They are out manned in the starting lineup. Their rock solid rotation seems to be crumbling. Their bench is contructed of a back-up catcher and 4 pinch-runner/defensive replacements. They are relying on many players who are inexperienced in this sort of thing against a storied franchise. And then there was that pesky 5 game losing streak at the end of the season. (Fortunately, that last one has been shown to not have a significant impact on postseason success)

At the same time, the mere fact that the Tigers are still playing means they have a shot. If the Tigers can find a way to take one of the first 2 games I actually believe the Tigers will win this series. This is fully a homer pick and not based on anything resembling solid logic. I’m confident that Kenny Rogers and Jeremy Bonderman can pick up wins against the Yankees 3rd and 4th options. Of course I was confident that the Tigers could beat the Royals and that didn’t mean a whole lot, but right now I’m looking for reasonable doubt.

This Tiger team has defied expectations all season. First of all they weren’t supposed to be good in the first place. They were supposed to fold in June after that tough stretch. They were supposed to maintain a 10 game year. They were supposed to beat the Royals. Whatever they are supposed to do, they seem to do the opposite. Right now the consensus is they should go quietly to the Yankees, let’s hope they can prove everyone wrong again.

For More Information

There are a cadre of excellent Yankees blogs out there. My favorites are Bronx Banter, Was Watching, and Replacement Level Yankees Weblog. Stop by and see what they’re saying about us.

 
 

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Steve October 2, 2006 at 10:01 pm

Billfer, Good post, comprehesive and yet still optomistic. I hold a similar view, we looked totally out maned here save the pitching. This will be a good test with good experience and a good view for next year to see where holes need to be filled. When you look at this numbers wise we really dont stand up offensively and with the pitching we are only marginally ahead. If you consider our starters look and act tired and the bull pen has been a tired act.

While I too hold out hope, and want to steal a game in NY we will need to be on our best behavior to win the series. Because if we do the Twins or A’s will be equally hard. Well lets see what Tuesday brings.

Steve

Sam October 2, 2006 at 10:30 pm

What caused the Tigers downfall:

4/1/2006-8/7/2006:

Overall: 76-36
1 run: 21-11
1&2 run: 33-16
All Others: 43-20

8/8/2006-10/1/2006:

Overall: 19-31

1 run: 3-9
1&2 run: 4-19
All Others: 15-12

I think that tells a large portion of the story.

-Sam

Jamie October 2, 2006 at 11:28 pm

Encore Screening of Stranded at the Corner: The Battle To Save Historic Tiger Stadium

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Ed Gardiner
248. 346. 8449
ed@thoughtcollide.com

Don’t miss the highly anticipated Episode 6 of InZer0, Detroit’s sci-fi cult series, and Stranded at the Corner: The Battle to Save Historic Tiger Stadium

Detroit, September 27, 2006 – The Mitten Movie Project presents Episode 6 of the acclaimed science fiction series InZer0, Thought Collide Productions’ latest project shot entirely in Detroit on Tuesday, October 3 at 7:30 p.m. at the Main Art Theatre in Royal Oak. Also showing is the feature documentary, Stranded at the Corner: The Battle To Save Historic Tiger Stadium.

InZer0 continues with Episode 6 as Thames enlists the help of an old friend, Jasmin of the Conversation Guild, to hide the Governor and encounters alien beings that provide answers to long-standing questions. The series is set in the near future as Thames, an ambitious courier, weaves his way through a dangerous city in a post-apocalyptic world. The future of the human race is at stake as the decimated population is unable to have children. Locations in Episode 6 include the Hastings Street Ballroom, Old Main (Wayne State University), Manoogian Hall (Wayne State University), the Motor City Industrial Park, and the most gorgeous and “InZer0” house the crew has ever shot in (Indian Village). Look for this house in the Conversation Guild scenes. Cameo appearances by Mick Collins of The Dirtbombs, Audra Kubat, Danny Methric of The Paybacks, Tony DeNardo of The Muggs, Carl Oxley III, Bryant Tillman, and more.

Regarding filming Episode 6 of a 12 part series, Creator Jamie Sonderman says, “It’s amazing to me that we’re at episode six already. I’m shocked at how fast this year has gone for me. InZer0 gets me out of bed in the morning and I love it. I especially love and appreciate everyone involved. I always knew there was plenty of talent in Detroit – InZer0 proves it.”

InZer0 stars local actors Jonny Victor as Thames and Mare L. Costello as Marilee as well as Stephanie Robinson, David Durham, Connie Cowper, Jeff Stetson, Vincent Rasnick, Sonja Ribicki, and Caleb Gilbert.

The evening continues with the documentary Stranded at the Corner: The Battle To Save Historic Tiger Stadium. The film features the memories and viewpoints of Detroit notorieties such as the late MaryAnn Mahafey, Willie Horton, and Benny Napoleon, among others. Stranded at the Corner is a frank exploration of the public and private maneuverings that resulted in the abandonment of one of America’s classic ballparks. Showcasing an entertaining blend of archival footage and contemporary interviews, Stranded at the Corner examines Tiger Stadium’s rich history, recounts the long struggle to prevent the team from leaving the park, and takes a critical look at its current state of neglect.

InZer0 and Stranded at the Corner are unrated. InZer0 includes sexual themes, mild violence and drug references.

In addition to the screening, there will be a free Directors Reception in the lobby of the Main Art Theatre from 6 pm to 7:30 pm. This is a great opportunity to meet the directors, stars, cast, crew and learn about casting opportunities for upcoming episodes of InZer0.

After the screening, the evening continues with an afterglow party at Bastone (419 S. Main Street – four blocks south of the Main Art Theatre). There is a suggested door donation of $5. 21+ welcome. DJ sets by the InZer0 cast and crew.

The Mitten Movie Project is a festival based in Detroit that is dedicated to exhibiting the work of digital filmmakers in Michigan and beyond with monthly screenings on the first Tuesday of the month at the Main Art Theatre located at 118 N. Main St. in Royal Oak.

Pre-sale tickets are $10 at the Main Art Theatre the day of the showing or $11 via Pay Pal at http://www.myspace.com/inzero.

twayn October 2, 2006 at 11:53 pm

Growing up in Indiana in the 60s, my brothers and I could often pick up Tigers games on clear nights on our transistor AM radios, and I can remember listening the Ernie Harwell call games “from the corner of Michigan and Trumbull.” Old school baseball, to be sure. It seemed like the Tigers were always a part of the pennant race and playoff picture back then, and they play a big part in my fondest early baseball memories (I’ll never, ever forget the 1968 World Series). Twenty-some years later and growing older in Minnesota, the Tigers were back, tormenting the Twins on their way to winning it all in ’84, and testing the Twins in one of the great ALCS matchups of my lifetime in ’87. Fast forward another couple of decades, following many years that each franchise would just as soon forget, and here we are, Twins and Tigers, representing the AL Central in the playoffs. We played in the best division in baseball all season long, and we ran a race that went right down to the wire in a photo finish, with both teams finishing ahead of the defending World Champions. How that last day went down for your side has to be harder than I want to imagine. But this is the beauty of baseball, and especially October baseball. Tomorrow, we get another game, and it counts so much more than any regular season game. So if the Tigers can take anything from the regular season into these playoffs, I hope it will be this — anything is possible until the last out. Good luck with the Yankees. I for one would be happy to see a rematch of the 1987 ALCS.

Nate A. October 3, 2006 at 2:44 am

Wonderful post. Dissapointed as I’ve been lately, I still have some hope for the post season. I’m counting on Verlander to give us a win in the Bronx.

On a more amusing note, I love the final Key for Tiger success acording to Baseball Prospectus:

“They must keep Neifi Perez away from the field at all times. I recommend the Grand Hyatt on 42nd St. myself.”

Jojo SunDevil October 3, 2006 at 8:58 am

I second that, keep Neifif away from the field. You mean to tell me that Neifi and Santiago over Shelton are best fielding first baseman. Mercy.

Andrew October 3, 2006 at 10:12 am

I had a difficult time falling asleep last night. Not because I was worried about the Tigers chances, but I was SO excited for the Tigers to be in the playoffs again. I am like a kid on Christmas anxiously awaiting tonight’s game.

Here are my 5 Predictions for the 2006 MLB Playoffs:

1. Tim McCarver will remove any doubt of what kind of idiot he is before the first pitch tonight.

2. Discussing/Arguing about who will win the NL Pennant is irrelevant – The best NL team would probably not even be in the top 4 of the AL teams.

3. The 2006 World American Series will be one of the lowest rated series in the last 20 years if it is a matchup of Yankees and Mets.

4. The media will adopt the Twins as their underdog of choice for the postseason even though the Tigers huge turnaround should be the bigger story thereby making them the true underdog.

5. The Detroit Tigers shock the world (and their fans) by sweeping the Yankees in the first round, beating out the Twins in 7 games for the AL Pennant, and taking out the Mets in 5 games to capture their 5th Title. (this is the last time I should try posting while sitting in the garage with my truck running ;) )

These aren’t all serious predictions (except for the Tim McCarver one). I am just giddy for the playoffs to begin and wanted to have a little fun.

I truly believe that the Tigers will NOT embarass us against the Yankees. I think this will be a more entertaining series than the Oakland/Minn. one.

Coach Jim October 3, 2006 at 11:22 am

When everything on paper points to one team having an OBVIOUS advantage, such as the series we’re about to see, players and coaches refer to that as a REVERSE LOCK. Generally that means that the odds are stacked so far in favor of one team the result is usually the opposite (like last weekend against the Royals).

Andrew: I agree Tim McCarver is an idiot. Here’s an interesting bit of trivia. In the 1968 World Series where the Tigers Beat the Cardinals in 7, the famous last out was Bill Freehan catching a foul pop-up then jumping into the arms of Mickey Lolich. The batter: Tim McCarver.

Andrew October 3, 2006 at 11:29 am

Jim, I was thinking that same thing this morning while listening to the sports “braintrust” talk about how overwhelming the Yankees advantage is. I’ll give a sports comparison here to illustrate my point.

Say in the NFL you face a team in your division twice in the regular season and the beat you both times. Then, you meet in the division championship and everything would seem to point to you being the overwhelming underdog since the other team owned you during the regular season. How many times do we see the supposed underdog win in those situations? Quite a few I would think.

That right there is what gives me hope in this series. You don’t have to be great in the postseason – just better than the other guy on that given day/night.

Also, I had forgotten about that trivia tidbit from the ’68 Series. I know I heard it sometime through the years, but must have placed it in the dustbin of my brain ;).

Coach Jim October 3, 2006 at 11:42 am

My last prediction was that the Tigers’ bats would get well against all the poor pitching we were going to see in September, end the season on a roll, take 1st place, and head into the playoffs with their confidence high. I was looking like a genius with 5 games to go. Then…welllll

So here’s the next prediction: Tigers in 4. They will lose Friday (Rogers vs. Wright). Bondo will get hammered Saturday, but get pulled in the 2nd and Ledezma will pitch 5 shutout innings. Then everybody will head to Roger’s Roost in Sterling Heights to celebrate. And good thing too, my band is playing there that night. AllergicToDave (dot com)

(sorry Billfer, I won’t do it again. It just seemed fitting after that long inZer0 post)

cc October 3, 2006 at 11:50 am

1. Tim McCarver will remove any doubt of what kind of idiot he is before the first pitch tonight.

Speaking of Tim McCarver being an idiot (we agree), I believe I learned that back in 1990 as I recall how irritating he was to us Cincinnati fans (where I lived at the time). He fawned over the Oakland A’s (who were really good and a big favorite) and how they totally outmatched the surprising Reds…who promptly swept the A’s in the World Series.

I am thrilled the Tigers are here, but make no mistake, I want them to win.

If I could magically turn down FOX and turn up WXYT, I would, but I can’t here in Missouri. If I want to watch a real collapse I’ll tune in the Cardinals.

Kyle J October 3, 2006 at 11:57 am

I do have to say it will be very cool to tune in tonight in prime time and hear Joe Buck and Tim McCarver talking about the Tigers in a playoff game. I’m not a fan of either guy, but they are today’s voices of playoff baseball–the same guys who called the already mythical Yankees-Sox series of 2004. I may have to pinch myself at about 8:10.

I also have a good feeling about Robertson pitching the opener. He’s been the most consistent starter all year. He’s been unlucky with low run support but I think it’s been just that–bad luck. I’d rather have the guy nobody knows about starting the first game.

Go Tigers!

Kurt October 3, 2006 at 12:17 pm

The one thing we learn in life is the more ESPN talks against you, the more likely you are to do fine. Fortunately not a single one of them on air or ESPN.com picked the Tigers to win. Not one. That was the best news I saw all day.

Andrew October 3, 2006 at 12:21 pm

Anyone getting much work done today? I might listen in on the Twins & A’s game to get a little playoff flavor in anticipation of tonight.

Chris Y. October 3, 2006 at 12:22 pm

One word: giddy.

Man, I really am starting to feel like its a new season. And while I may not like our chances by the numbers, I like our chances!

Play ball!

Jeff M October 3, 2006 at 12:33 pm

Billfer, I’m very disappointed. I see no analysis as to which bar is most suitable for playoff baseball.

Kyle J October 3, 2006 at 12:45 pm

As a follow-up to Sam’s post on W-L records above, I’d note that over the 19-31 period, the Tigers have scored 233 runs and given up 236 runs. Their pythagorean record, then, would be almost exactly .500.

There’s no doubt the Tigers have not played with the same confidence they did early in the season, but at least some of the reduction in W-L performance has to be chalked up to bad luck.

Kurt October 3, 2006 at 12:46 pm

Try working evening shifts, Andrew. I had to move around my Friday schedule so I wouldn’t be in Negaunee watching high school football when the first playoff pitch at Comerica is thrown.

Tonight I will be going between radio and tv and get nothing done, I’m sure.

Fritz October 3, 2006 at 12:55 pm

Where are folks going in Chicago? I know there are a ton of U of M and MSU bars in Lincoln Park, but after the John Barleycorn round of the “meathead-Yuppy peace accords,” that ‘hood kind of scare me.

Anyone know an actually good Northside Tigers’ spot?

Fritz

Andrew October 3, 2006 at 12:58 pm

Kurt, how is the weather in Negaunee. I was up in the U.P. at the end of last week and it was beautiful.

If you really want to get fired up for tonight’s game read ESPN’s brilliant expected analysis. Basically, there is no chance for the Tigers to win. Personally, I like those odds :).

I keep hearing this soundbite from Jim Leyland about how he doesn’t consider the Tigers the underdog against the Yankees. His reasoning is that all 8 teams remaining are pretty much equal.

Gotta disagree there, Jim. I would be playing the “no respect” underdog role to the hilt. Get these guys to band together believing that the whole world is against them and gives them a snowballs chance against the mighty Yankees.

Us against the world baby cause that is really what this series boils down to. Lets be honest here, NONE of the national media (heck, even the locals) give the Tigers a chance to do anything but smile for the camera this postseason and give the old “just glad to be here” soundbite.

Ooh, baby! Can’t wait for the first pitch!

Jeff M October 3, 2006 at 1:12 pm

Gotta disagree there, Jim. I would be playing the “no respect” underdog role to the hilt.

I think he is; he’s just doing it in a subtle way. By claiming that all 8 teams are approximately equal, he’s saying that everyone is underestimating the Tigers, since no one outside of the Detroit area is giving them a chance to play 5 games.

Kyle J October 3, 2006 at 1:14 pm

A-Rod batting 6th tonight for the first time all year. Hopefully, this serves as a distraction for the Yankees.

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2006/writers/jon_heyman/10/03/playoff.scoop/index.html?cnn=yes

Joey the K October 3, 2006 at 1:20 pm

So all the media seem to have forgotten what a good season we had, you’d think we were the Devil Rays the way everyone is talking about us.

I keep getting the willys everytime I think that we are in the playoffs.

Kurt October 3, 2006 at 1:28 pm

I don’t know about Negaunee, but it’s fine in Marquette. Uneventful. 60s. Cloudy. The weather has to rest up before causing havoc in November.

Dave from 'The ATL' October 3, 2006 at 2:48 pm

Well, if pitching beats hitting then the tigers should win this series. We’ve got the best ERA in baseball!

Kyle J October 3, 2006 at 3:39 pm

A’s beat Twins. Zito gives up four hits and one run in eight innings. Big Hurt goes deep twice. Clearly, playing the A’s would have been no cakewalk, either.

T Smith October 3, 2006 at 3:41 pm

Okay…this has been expressed above, but, living in the NY metropolitan area, I’ll take it one step further. In NY, no one is even giving this series 4 games, let alone 5. All I hear is “Yankees in 3″ Not just from fans, but from writers, baseball commentors, etc. They do not utter this unamious perdiction with a boasting air, but with a matter-of-fact air. It’s absurdly entertaining. The only baseball authority in the NY area who has shown the least bit of respect for the Tigers and our chances is…Joe Torre, who has been quoted as saying, (and I’m paraphrasing)…”don’t underestimate the Tigers. They can be dangerous.” Of course the role of cautionary sage is his job. He would never dream of saying anything otherwise.

But other than Torre, I am really enjoying this whole development and actually beginning to think we may have a chance because of it. Aside from being the most arrogant, obnoxious, self-assured fans and commentors imaginable, the New York baseball contingent may not know what hit them until the Tigers have three Ws under our belts.

This whole David vs. Goliath spin really works to our advantage, especially if the Yankee players begin to buy into it. I just hope the Tigers aren’t buying into it… that’s where Leyland comes in.

T Smith October 3, 2006 at 3:53 pm

Joey the K…

I think the media would be actually be showing the Devil Rays more respect than they are showing the Tigers right now, if the Yankees had to somehow face the Rays in the playoffs…if I am correct about this, the Rays didn’t roll over when they played the Yankees this year, and actually won a series or two

William October 3, 2006 at 3:56 pm

Mike Francesa pronounced this the “easiest playoff series the Yankees have had since Torre was named manager”. What a maroon.

The way the press is treating NY, you’d think that they have won 10 WS in a row, as opposed to being in a 5 year drought.

Andrew October 3, 2006 at 5:02 pm

Good point Kyle J. No one in the playoffs is a cakewalk. Unless you are mainstream media or a Yankee fan – then you would foolishly consider the Tigers to be a cakewalk.

All this garbage I have listened to on talk radio today about how lightly the Tigers are regarded in this series has me chomping at the bit. I can’t wait for the Tigers to go out there and do us proud.

Stephen October 3, 2006 at 5:13 pm

Man, i’m glad to feel the irrational exuberance here. but the tigers beating the yankees would be the greatest playoff upset since baseball went to the divisional series. but i will pray for them as i try and remember the last time the tigers took 3 out of 5 against a team with an above .500 record.

Paul October 3, 2006 at 5:34 pm

We’ll see if this team relishes the role of underdog or not right away, because no one is giving them a shot.

Pete October 3, 2006 at 6:24 pm

Lineups are posted! No surprises. I still don’t like Casey batting third, but I guess he’s been hitting a little better lately, which is not saying much. (Question: who is behind Casey on our depth chart at first base?) I can’t really tell which team has the better lineup, because every single player on each team is hitting .000. Seriously, let’s hope Sheffield and Matt Suhey are rusty and that A-Rod gets in his own head. This Yankees team can be beaten. Let’s get some runs for Nate.

T Smith October 3, 2006 at 7:11 pm

Steven, I agree with you. There is a bit of irrational exhuberance going on here…but I don’t think any of the teams that have beaten the Tigers in a series after the All-Star break, .500+ included, would ever have the audacity to say they were going to “sweep” as a matter of statement (except maybe the Whitesox…and look what happened in that series… we win 2 of 3).

In my industry we have a saying….post before you boast. I think that implies here, as well.

As a matter of odds, the Yanks have an edge–actually a sizeable edge. I’m definately not arguing that here. But that edge is getting blown way out of proportion. To quote a hackneyed cliche, you can’t script October….

Go Tigs… prove this “superior team” wrong.

Andrew October 3, 2006 at 7:59 pm

After the debacle over the weekend I needed some exuberance displayed here (no matter how irrational) since this is the first time in 19 years that the Tigers are actually in a playoff series.

I think a definition of a fan ought to include some leeway for showing exuberance when your brain tells you it just ain’t worth the effort. Do I truly believe the Tigers (or Yankees) will sweep? Heck no. I just want to remain optimistic unlike a lot of the folks I have read or heard on the radio since Sunday. When I think of the Tigers playing the Yankees and all of the negative things being said about the Tigers, I am reminded of a line from The Joker in Batman – “What this town needs is an enema!” In other words – Up Yours Yankees! :)

What New York and the sports media needs is to realize that the Tigers will give the Yankees a run for their George Steinbrenner’s money.

Enough soapbox stuff for me, on to the game!

Our October cheering for the Tigers has laid dormant for 19 long autumns, the Lions stink, and gee wiz – It’s October, anything can happen, right?

I don’t have any rally gum, but I do have a bucket of Dum-Dum suckers. Given the way the Tigers closed out the season a Dum-Dum Rally sounds more appropriate than a Gum Rally at this point.

Time to tell the wife to leave me alone for a few hours and enjoy some Tigers postseason baseball.

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