This time it counts…a tiny bit

So while yesterday was the exhibition to the exhibition season, this one was against the New York Mets, a bona fide big league club. And the Tigers won. Mack Avenue Tigers has the wrap-up so I won’t duplicate it here. I will just point out good games for Marcus Thames, Curtis Granderson, and Andrew Miller and a pretty rough game for Neifi Perez.

Because of research and video blogs and interviews, I’m a full week behind on links and such so I’ll try to catch-up.

Scott Sizemore
Scott Sizemore – credit Roger Dewitt


When the big club is away, the kids will play. Roger DeWitt caught some of the action so if you want to see the possible Tigers of the distant future, you can see Dallas Trahern, Jeff Larish, and Audy Ciriaco (who I’m hoping has a big year) sporting Tigers road garb.

Front Page ESPN

The Tigers are the cover story on Jayson Stark pens (er, types) a piece on what a difference a year makes. There’s also video of Peter Gammons and Stark speaking favorably about the Tigers chances. And on a related ESPNish note, Mike McClary’s latest podcast features Gary Gillette.

Pitch by Pitch data

Eric Jackson at D-town Baseball looks at how pitchers fare in different counts. Plus, anyone can take a look at this type of stuff now because Sean Forman of Baseball Reference now includes a ton of pitch specific information on player pages going back to 2000. For an example, check out our favorite subject Curtis Granderson (nice to see the 78% contact rate in limited 2005 action).

The Dugout

Channel 7 WXYZ in Detroit recently launched a new website that is all Tigers called the Dugout. It of course has a feed of wire stories. It also has a wide variety of video, including a webcast with Jamie and Brady from WDFN. But what really differentiates it is that it includes links to blog stories as well. It’s great to see the MSM linking out to us independent guys. Make sure to check it out for all kinds of information.

Bonderman’s 3rd pitch

Jeremy Bonderman’s change-up is a yearly thing. One of the advantages of bringing Bonderman North in 2003 was that he would benefit from Bob Cluck’s change-up tutelage with the Tigers. It didn’t so much work out. I don’t think Bonderman has to have a 3rd pitch, but it would certainly help. When his fastball and slider are working (which is 2/3 of the time it seems) he can go an entire game without a 3rd pitch. Where it will help is those times where one of his other pitches isn’t working.

Other old stuff

Here are some things from last week that you probably saw, but in case you didn’t:


  1. Jeff M

    February 28, 2007 at 10:21 pm

    I don’t think Bonderman has to have a 3rd pitch, but it would certainly help.

    Depends on your perspective. He certainly doesn’t need it to stay in the bigs. Barring injuries, he can easily have a nice career as a #3 guy with only two pitches. To live up to his potential, he needs the change-up.

  2. Rings

    March 1, 2007 at 11:02 am

    I’ll echo Jeff M. He’s a major leaguer the way he is, of course, but to the the “ace” of his potential – and everyone’s imagination – he must have a #3, whether it’s a big duece, change or splitter, or something else off speed.
    When his slider is flat (Hafner’s ball in June still hasn’t landed), or he loses his concentration (two blown 5+ run leads), he gets in trouble.
    We can’t get too enamored with his post-season performance to forget that he lost a 6-0 lead to KC only a week before that would’ve won the division.

  3. Jeff M

    March 1, 2007 at 1:48 pm

    “It doesn’t count,” Granderson said, “but yet it does.”

  4. Kyle J

    March 1, 2007 at 2:56 pm

    Good article on Granderson and Buck O’Neil. Here’s hoping Curtis plays his home games at Comerica for the next 15 years.

    Anyone read the book about O’Neil? Looks like a good read. I just finished Tom Stanton’s “Road to Cooperstown” (the follow-up to “The Last Season”). I highly recommend it. Great account of a trip to the Hall of Fame 40 years after the author originally asked his Dad to take him.

  5. Tim D

    March 1, 2007 at 8:52 pm

    I read earlier where Bonderman was messing around with a sinker/splitter/forkball type of thing. I don’t think it matters what the 3rd pitch is as long as he can change speeds and the batter’s eye level. Maybe a cutter like Rivera throws to the lefties would do. I agree he needs something. He’s worked on the change for a long time and it’s never really come. But remember he’s 24.

    I love Scott Sizemore. Think Mark Ellis.