Game 61: Mets at Tigers
PREGAME: The Tigers look to rebound after an uncharacteristic offensive funk. In fact, it was their first shut out of the season.
They’ll have their work cut out for them as they take on Oliver Perez. The 25 year old left hander is striking out nearly a batter an inning, and only walking a third that many. Plus, he’s gone 7 or more innings in 5 straight starts. The Tigers have stacked the lineup with righties with the exception of Sean Casey who is 11 for 24 lifetime off of Perez. Surprisingly, right handed batters have a lower batting average and the same on base percentage as lefties against Perez. However, they slug for about 50 points more than the left handed counterparts.
Jeremy Bonderman has been pitching like a man on a mission since coming off the DL. He’s allowed only 3 earned runs over 21 innings spanning 3 starts. He’s also received a ton of run support, though he didn’t need it. In those 3 games the Tigers have plated 35 runs.
Game Time 3:55
POSTGAME: The bats came through for Jeremy Bonderman again, and he and the bullpen needed every last run. Regardless, it was nice to see the offense back again. It was a tiny strike zone, and the Tigers did a good job taking advantage of that working 5 walks off of Perez and one off of Guillermo Mota.
- One day after I mention that Carlos Guillen doesn’t look quite right, he responds with a 3 run first inning tater and a ground rule double.
- I don’t know if it was Perez’s control problems, Magglio Ordonez’s eye, or if the Mets noticed that Guillen had been struggling and were thus more tentative with Maggs. In any case he came up with 3 walks – and tacked on one more double.
- Jeremy Bonderman looked great for much of the game. The first inning run was a fluke, and he responded well. He was efficient and had the Mets off balance. That’s what made the 7th inning so surprising.
- The middle guys in the bullpen were good enough. That’s about all I’ll say. Wil Ledezma did get some big outs when he absolutely had to.
- Todd Jones was making his first save appearance since the debacle in Cleveland – and he looked terrific. He threw strikes, and even picked up 2 K’s. Jones actually induced 4 outs that inning.
This was a fun one, and even last night despite the results was a great game. It’s been a treat to watch these 2 teams these first 2 games.
Tigers 8 Mets 7