Game 99: Tigers at White Sox

PREGAME: The Tigers now try to salvage a split of the double header. They’ll send out Virgil Vasquez who hopefully will be a little better than in his debut in which he didn’t make it out of the 3rd inning. At least Bonderman kept the pen fresh if such an unfortunate event unfolds.

The White Sox send out Gavin Floyd who made one start this year, and surrendered 4 homers in 5 2/3 innings, along with 4 walks. Let’s hope he’s just as effective tonight

Game Time 8:11pm

DET @ CHW, Tuesday, July 24, 2007 Game Preview –

118 thoughts on “Game 99: Tigers at White Sox”

  1. Hessman starting at 3rd. Fine with me. I thought Guillen and/or Polanco would’ve gotten one of these games off.

  2. Hey, he struck out Thome (he scares me) and we made it thru the first inning! Lets Go Tigers!!

  3. I know it’s only been 24 hours, but Hessman has been impressive. He made a couple of nice plays at 1st last night and the ball is just blasting off his bat. Even when he fouls them off, they sound scary.

    Go Tigers!

  4. Yeah, I’m still not sold. His power’s never been questioned.

    I was hoping Rabelo would hit that out.

  5. And, granted Rabelo’s not tearing the cover off the ball, the ERA when he’s behind the plate is 4.21 (4.32 when Pudge is behind the dish) and he’s throwing out 21% of would-be base stealers (Pudge is at 23%). With only 85 AB’s through late July, I don’t know how much more people would want. He’s putting up the same production defensively as Pudge.

  6. Yeah, if we get into their pen, this could get and stay very ugly. Well, in a pretty kind of way. Assuming our guy doesn’t screw it up for his part, of course.

  7. Hmmmm….. I kinda like this starter for the Sox, unlike the first game I would rather not see the bullpen. 🙂

  8. Looks to be HR Derby tonight for both sides. To be expected with Vasquez and Floyd on the mounds.

    And to end my defense of Mike Rabelo, after his 1 for 16 April, he’s hitting .294/.338/.352. Not driving the ball, but solid numbers from a backup catcher to go with the small drop off (numbers wise) when he’s behind the plate.

    And, anyone know why Virgil quit going by his first name, Matt?

  9. And Vance may not be able until later in the season next year with his TJ surgery. Maybe I’m wrong but it seems like there was an article about him not being ready until after Spring Training.

  10. Correct Kathy. I appreciate how Rabelo has developed when this role was really not expected for him at this time. Who else have we got? I remember a few weeks ago Pudge was out with that leg bruise or whatever and the backup-backup catcher was NEIFI. We’re lucky considering.

  11. 5 solid innings out of VV would be very happy. I assume Durbin has been saved for purposes of going 2 or 3 innings tonight.

    On a whole other topic, does Dombrowski really think we can get a PTBNL for Grilli? Is that why he didn’t get DFAed today?

  12. Tbone, I think Hessman wants to be your Tiger, not your Mudhen, for a little while longer. And at this rate, he’s gotta pretty good shot.

  13. 8 pitch inning? I’m very impressed by this pitching performance from a guy that was so discombobulated last time. Very impressed.

  14. Quite a pitchers’ duel in Cleveland. Matsuzaka-to-Okijima-to-Papelbon shuts the Indians down.

  15. Blame the first start on the hex of the Metrodome. That’s the last place I’d want to make my major league debut as a pitcher.

  16. White Sox announcers just commented that this was only the 5th time that the Indians have been shut out all year…Tigers have been shut out once.

  17. OMG this can’t be happening. I think I’ve got to switch from baseball to dogfighting – – –

  18. Alright, if we can’t score off a guy named Bukvich, then we don’t deserve to win. Sounds like a member of the Delta house.

  19. God…I HATE Jim Thome!!! That mothereffer has to continually pound Tiger pitching whether its Maroth, Moeller, Sparks, Bonderman, or Verlander or the ghost of Dan Petry. WTF? Did someone on the Tigers bang his wife? The guy has some kind of death wish vendatta against the Tigers or something. I’d recommend starting tomorrow’s game off by drilling Thome in the head. I feel like the Tigers are Bill and Thome is Beatrix Kiddo. In other words, a relentless bloodbath.

  20. biilfer….I think we can cut Grandy some slack tonight. He’s been red-hot lately and was due for an off night. His teammates have picked him up offensively tonight, now its a matter of whether the bullpen can stem the tide in the last two innings.

  21. walewander…..what happened is that a 7-1 Tiger lead thru five innings has melted to 7-6. As I type this Mackowiak drills a double off of Casey’s glove to lead off the bottom of the 8th. Just beautiful. Dombrowski must make a deal. This bullpen is just bad enough to keep us from making any noise in the postseason or even getting to the postseason. They are really scaring me the last few nights.

  22. Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory once again…I have a tough time enjoying Tigers games this year…even when they’re up 9-1, I spend the whole game worrying…

  23. You think Monroe looks at Uribe and thinks “Man, if I just had an OBP like that guy…”?

  24. I’m usually pretty forgiving but this is embarassing. I think Virgil is probably ready to put out a hit on the bullpen…poor kid. Worked his heart out and look at this.

  25. Any idea what would have happened had Owens tripped Raburn there with the bat? Would Owens be out for batter interference?

  26. Its not as bad as the five run crash job at Cleveland by Jones because A) that all came in the final inning and B) he’s our closer and a four run lead with three outs to go should be automatic for a contending teams closer. That said, this one will stick in my craw for sometime if we don’t come back and win. Absolutely sickening collapse by the bullpen in the sixth, seventh, and eight innings.

  27. Ugggg….I can’t believe they’re going to drop a game they were ahead by so many in…this is really disgusting!

  28. THIS is the game where Leyland gives “the speech.” Someone needs to be called on the carpet. I don’t want him taking the blame because he forgot to remind everyone they’re playing in the central time zone or something. I only watched the last couple of innings, so I don’t know who needs to get it, but these things just don’t “happen.”

  29. This is the thing: I’m not going to argue the Tigers aren’t a really good team. If they win tomorrow, they’re playing at a .600 clip and on pace to win 96 games.
    But… The Yankees are coming hard and the Indians are right there with us. So, if we go, say, 34-29 over the last 63 all of sudden we’re that team that won 93 games and didn’t make the playoffs. It happens.
    Guess what: They win 93 and don’t make the playoffs I ain’t gonna be clapping and going on and on about what a great year it was. It will be a rare opportunity wasted. This bullpen and a stretch drive and/or the playoffs make bad traveling companions. I’m gonna hold off for a week and see what Dombrowski does. I fear now that the Yanks are 4.5 back in the wild card their largesse is gonna soak up the relief help we need.

  30. To all the trade Maybin and Gorkys smartass comments above: Win now. You never know if you’ll be in this position when Maybin finally arrives in Detroit. For all we know, Bonderman and Verlander could be the next Wood and Prior. I hope to God that doesn’t happen, but you never know how long a guy’s arm will hold up over the years. I’m not saying you have to trade one of those two guys (Maybin or G. Hernandez), but something needs to be done. The Tigers will not win the World Series this year without upgrading the bullpen. That’s even if Zumaya and Rodney return healthy and effective. The rest of this ‘pen sucks rocks and it isn’t going to happen without some kind of upgrade. I love how people cling to Maybin as if he’s the second coming of Barry Bonds minus the ‘roids. With all the hype this kid has he better blow people away right from the jump or it’ll get ugly for the kid because the expectations will be sky high. At this point he’s been built into an urban legend who’ll cure cancer, hit .350, and have 40 HRs with 150 RBI. Oh yeah, and be the the World Series MVP for five years running.

    If we don’t win a World Series over the next couple of years because we were afraid to trade Maybin or Hernandez or Jurrgens or whoever down on the farm for a difference maker at the deadline, I hope everyone can take solace in Maybin’s Rookie of the Year campaign in 2009 or 2010. I’m all about team hardware, not individual hardware.

  31. it will be interesting to see what Leyland says after the game. Will he be superpissed? Or nonchalant? The bullpen really screwed the pooch.

  32. Keith where have you been man? Stephen has been on that for a bit I just tease him a little.

  33. lmao. btw on espn the bottom line just keeps repeating, “Bonds strikes out in the 7th” over and over.

  34. I must say the ChiSox strategy to rain-out a sunny day worked.

    This is absolutely horrible. How do you possibly blow a 7-1 lead in the sixth inning? As of tonight, July 24, 2007, I shall partake no more in any discussions that argue this Detroit Tiger bullpen is adequate. Let this date go down in infamy. Prattle on if you like to the contrary, I deign to dignify with rebuttal. This is downright ugly.

    I am absolutely embarassed. In addition, after this debacle, the price of Dotel, Lidge et. all just went up. This is a disperate team in need of bullpen help, and sellers know it.

  35. Interesting stats: The White Sox average 4.1 runs per game agaisnt everyone else in the AL (93 game sample) versus 5.4 runs per game in their seven contests against us. WTF? Why can’t we shut down this offense? Dye is hitting around .230 but when we play the White Sox he looks like an MVP candidate. Thome has 50 career HRs against Detroit pitching. 50. Let that sink in. Jenks in now 12 for 12 in save opps versus Detroit career-wise.

    Why do the CWS get so up for Detroit? They just got swept by the lowly Orioles in Baltimore this weekend. They are no longer the team that won the World Series two years ago. I don’t understand why their offense is so pedestrian against everyone else but us. This loss has really put me on tilt and I’m just aimlessly rambling. Sorry, but my wife just doesn’t care so I have to vent here. One last question: Was Leyland seriously going to pinch hit Monroe for Raburn? Can someone explain that logic to me?

  36. Well, what can they do?

    On the radio today they were talking about a Jurrgens for Rousch trade with the Nats.

  37. Okay, okay. Everyone just put in a pinch and calm down. It was just one double header. As poorly as we have been playing, we are still at .500 for the last 10. Heck, how many 10 game stretches have we gone where we have been under .500?

    Let’s look at the competition. BOS recently went through a miserable stretch, are you any less afraid of them? The Yankees have been smoking, but they are also healthy, which is a rarity for a team of geriatrics carrying around colostomy bags. I’d be absolutely shocked if they stayed healthy and made the playoffs, and would be the first in line to congratulate Cashman. But the Yankees are crapping themselves right now chasing us.

    CLE has been playing great, and think they are our biggest threat, but if you look at them top to bottom – whose team would you rather have?

    ANA – what have they hit, 1 HR since ’97? Again, whose team would you rather have?

    Need I remind you that we have 4 legitimate pitchers under the age of 28 and the best lineup 1-9 in all of baseball.

    All of MLB knows that we are one quick move or a healthy Zumaya/Rodney away from cruising into the Post Season. (But what fun is cruising in? We sure as hell wouldn’t have 100+ responses with a win tonight.)

    I agree that the bullpen has been miserable, and I’m open to trading one of our young studs, but not for a two month player. I don’t see the risk being worth the reward.

    We’ll be okay, these games make the season great. I can’t wait for tomorrow’s game.

  38. And another thing: why did Carlos play both games? I mean come on, the guy gets bashed on the leg last night and can hardly walk and he plays both games and then commits another error. His errors are starting to hurt the team. I love him but he needs to take a day off once in a while.

  39. Dont know if anyone cares or not but on the Bronx is Burning they just played an old clip of Ernie from the 77 season and showed the Tigers fans giving Marting a pretty nice applause

  40. Keith G:

    1. The worst part about your first rant is this: the WhiteSox have vastly underacheived this year. They are actually a much better team than their record indicates. This type of heroic comeback is just the kind of fire they need to string together a nine or ten game win streak. Leave it to the Tigers (and their Little League bullpen) to potentially fuel that rally. I don’t see how you quell that kind of momentum going into tomorrow’s game. If I was playing on this Tiger’s team, I’d be downright demoralized right now. If I was playing on this Whitesox team, I’d be downright fired up and ready to go for the kill. That said, the Tigers usually DO bounce back after falling off the wagon like this; for some reason, bouncing back after this one just seems like an enormous feat. I may not watch tomorrow and hope for the best.

    2. Yes, Leyland was going to pinch hit Monroe for Raburn. That’s his modus operandi, his managerial strategy. He’s trying to lift the confidence level of his slumping LFer — by casting his vote of confidence in Monroe, if you will. It’s as if he’s slapping Monroe on the back, saying, “…this is your big moment, kid, go get ’em, sport!” And then closing his eyes and hoping beyond hope that Monroe will actually come through with a sort of magical spark that serves to regain his confidence and get him back to form. Forget about the game on the line, forget about managing to give the Tigers the BEST shot at winning; he’s not managing to win the game at that point. He’s managing Monroe. (And in Leyland’s defense, that’s part of his job. Monroe is atrocious. What do you do with him? A lazy manager lets him rot on the bench–or insists the organization release him or put him on waivers; a good manager tries to get the most out of the talent he has. And that’s exactly what Leyland’s doing here. He’s trying to turn Monroe around. So in effect, he’s managing Monroe, the player, as opposed to managing the situation of the game (the best move being to let Raburn bat)

    And then (provided the strategy works) in some after-school special in the year 2039, an aged and weepy Monroe (being celebrated, of course, as one of the greats of the game) will explain how his days as a big leaguer were numbered before they really began, and how Jim Leyland saved his career, believed in him when nobody else did, and pinch hit him in that one crucial at-bat that changed his career.

    If you ask me, its horse dung. We don’t need Leyland stroking Monroe right now. We need to WIN. Monroe will either come out of this or not. Problem is, Monroe’s emotions get into his head and hence the dismal preformance. I certainly don’t want to play the psychology card when the game is on the line.

    Sorry about the excessive post. I’m extremely cranky tonight. This loss is hitting me hard.

  41. Kevin you say ‘Yankees have been smoking, but they are also healthy, which is a rarity for a team of geriatrics carrying around colostomy bags.’
    Uh, we have a 42 year old starter, a 38 year closer, a 38 yr old DH, a 2000 games caught catcher, and a right fielder with crappy knees. That sound you hear are the Tigers’ adjusting their Depends undergarments.

  42. T. Smith:

    I understand where you’re coming from on your Leyland/Monroe theory, but I agree with you that this is not the time for votes of confidence. Leyland’s first and foremost job is to win the game being played THAT night, not try to massage a slumping player’s ego that may (but probably won’t) spark him to a big second half. When Thames is available, I hope he gets the majority of the starts in LF. Its too bad we didn’t ship out Monroe to some sucker-ass team last winter when his value was at its highest point. You’re not the only cranky one tonight. This loss is hitting all of Tiger nation hard.

  43. T Smith, that’s a nice theory and all but what about when he pinch hit Casey last night for Monroe? Kinda throws your theory for a loop.

  44. Jim:

    I’ll grant you Leyland pinch hit for Monroe the night before; the difference being, in the former situation, there was only one out with a runner on third. All you need from a hitter in that case is to put the ball in play to get a return. Monroe had been choking all night (and most of the season, really) in similar situations… so you just have to pinch hit for Monroe in that situation.

    In the latter situation, once Monroe gets up there, there are likely two outs runner on first base and you need a hail Mary to tie/win. (I will add Monroe got into the on-deck circle before Inge stole second — and depending on what Rabelo does, Leyland might even change the decision to bat Monroe if the likelihood to produce a run increases) In a situation where we need a Hail Mary (Leyland figures) Monroe has just as good a chance as anybody else to reach the seats, so why not give Monroe the shot?

    Again, this is all hypothetical, in an attempt to address Keith G’s question — and really the only explanation that makes sense to me.

    If you ask me, I never pinch hit Monroe until he’s well out of his funk. The Tiger’s gave Chris Shelton a much shorter leash last year — and he was no where NEAR as bad as Monroe this year.

  45. Shelton wasn’t making almost 5 million a year. Monroe does.

    The Tigers are not old. Their age is not why we have lost the last 2 games or any games this year.

  46. Kathy:

    You are exactly right. That’s the point. The team has alot invested in Monroe, so they’re gonna use him.

  47. I think it would be nice to see Hessman DH and Sheff in LF while Thames is on the DL. It would be a good way to get him into the lineup without sacrificing Casey’s or Inge’s defense, and upgrade the offense short term.

  48. Of all major leaguers with enough at-bats to qualify for a batting title, Monroe has the second lowest OBP (behind jason kendall, who actually brings something defensively) and the tenth-lowest OPS.

  49. Frankly, I’d love to see the Tigers dump Monroe and put Thames out there every day. At one time, there were teams interested in Monroe, but I don’t know if that’s the case anymore. I’m sure they are trying to give him every opportunity to turn himself around but we’ll see what happens come July 31st. He may still be with the Tigers, but riding the pine.

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