PREGAME: The Tigers will go for the sweep today against the Cardinals. With it being a day game after a night game, and an off day tomorrow, and the series already won, I’m expecting to see the B lineup today.
The Tigers will send out an A pitcher though with Justin Verlander taking the hill. Verlander is coming off his best start of the season, a 2 run 7 inning performance against the Red Sox.
The Cardinals will again turn to their bullpen in search of a starter. This time it will be Brad Thompson making his 4th career start, and 3rd of the season. Thompson posts a solid 4.03 ERA. But, he has a below average strikeout rate (4.7 per 9), an average walk rate (2.7 per 9), and he’s allowing more than a hit an inning. The most glaring item on the stat sheet though is 7 homers in 29 innings. Luckily for Thompson 6 of the 7 have been solo shots.
Game Time 1:05pm
POSTGAME – with Pictures
Sean Casey’s doubles in 2 runs
I made it down to Comerica for the first time since the 2nd game of the year. And let me say it was a great day. I’ll get to the action on the field in a minute, but first the kids day experience.
Sunday’s at Comerica Park are terrific if you have 4 to 6 year old kids. There’s the face painting, the free rides, and of course kids run the bases. We took part in all of those events. They also do a car giveaway. Actually, 4 car giveaways and they are the Little Tikes Hummer H2′s. Well, in the 2nd inning a woman came to sit by us. This woman works for the Tigers and was there to inform us that my son had won!
So my son and I got to go underneath the stands and we watched a half inning with the grounds crew. While we were waiting one of the employees down there came up with a ball for my son. We went on the field for the presentation. My son of course was into the car he just won while I was just looking around at being on the field and being a few feet from Brandon Inge and Curtis Granderson waiting to come up to bat. (I could play it cool and say it was no big deal, but come on. Of course it was a big deal!)
On to the game notes:
- It was another fine outing by Verlander. From my seats in the bleachers, he didn’t appear dominating, but never was really in a lot of trouble.
- Chris Duncan’s home run was just a bomb. First time since 2005 a homer went out to centerfield. I really think the drought was more of an anomaly than anything since it seemed there would be 4-5 a year.
- Carlos Guillen made a couple nice plays at short, but once again blew a routine play. That’s 4 by my count in the last week.
- Speaking of guys playing defense, Sheffield put the glove on and made a couple sliding plays in right field and at one point recorded 4 straight putouts.
- Curtis Granderson led off with a triple. I don’t know if he’s got blazing speed, but he’s still fast and seems to get around the bases with eases. How many times has he made not even close taking the extra base when it isn’t necessarily expected? It must be that “baseball speed”
- Sean Casey continued to rip the ball with a couple more hard hit line drives today. Is he shaking out of the early season slump? Is it one of those inevitable hot streaks that all players experience? Is it the Cardinals?
- The bottom of the order came up big with the 7-8-9 hitters knocking in 5 of the 6 runs. That included a 2 run blast by Brandon Inge.