Game 140: White Sox at Tigers

by billfer on September 6, 2007 · 191 comments

in 2007 Season,Game Post

PREGAME: Afternoon tilt today as Chad Durbin takes on Mark Buehrle. The pitching match-up certainly favors the White Sox, but I just have no idea what to expect from this team anymore. For every “the Tigers make a struggling pitcher look like Cy Young” game there seems to be a “this is the shortest outing” or “this is the most runs allowed” against a good pitcher.

Plus Gary Sheffield is back, so 3-hole roulette should be done for the time being.

Game Time 1:05

POSTGAME: As it’s been said time and time again on this site, if you need offense turn to Timo, Casey, and Inge. Yeah, yeah, we know Polanco is great with runners in scoring position, and he got the walk off, but it was really Sean Casey with the bacon saver yet again. And it was Timo Perez’s ghost runner that plated the tying run.

Now granted, the Tigers didn’t exactly rip the ball in that 9th inning, and once again the offense struggled to plate runners, but it’s still a win and I’m not going to complain. For all the times in the last week or so that the team need a duck or a bleeder only to strand 2 runners, I’ll gladly take a couple of weak ground balls hit exactly in the right spot. After all, aside from the Konerko hit the Sox didn’t really kill the ball in the 8th inning anyways.

And even if the Tigers did barely squeak out 2 wins against a last place team, they still count the same in the standings. So let’s go take care of the Mariners so we can just focus our scoreboard watching on one team.

  • Very nice effort by Chad Durbin as there was little solid contact all day off of him. He didn’t go longer because of the multiple roles this season, and he’s not fully stretched out.
  • But realted to that we see the dangers of having Kenny and Chad back to back in the rotation. It will tax the bullpen because it’s going to be rare that either goes more than 5 or 6 innings.
  • Maybe Brandon Inge has regained some confidence after picking up that walk against Bobby Jenks on Tuesday. He had 3 solid hits today, one of which was that nice homer. Brandon doesn’t have to get really hot to help the team, but at least hitting something close to the line he’s posted over the past 3 years for the next 3 weeks will be a boost to the offense.
  • Jason Grilli has now made 7 straight appearances without allowing a run, and in the last 4 those were outings of 2 innings or more. In that time he’s shaved a full point off of his ERA. This isn’t about Grilli love, just recognizing him for a real nice stretch.
  • Jim Leyland was managing pretty aggressive in this one. You didn’t see Zumaya because he pitched 2 innings last night. But look at all the pinch hitters and pinch runners used today. In all he used 14 position players.
 
 

{ 191 comments }

Kyle J September 6, 2007 at 8:24 am

What happened to the game 139 thread? We finally win a close one and the evidence the game was even played has been wiped off the face of the blog!

Steve in OH September 6, 2007 at 8:25 am

Yeah… I googled and did a bunch of searching and it seems 139 has vanished into thin air. What’s up?

billfer September 6, 2007 at 8:29 am

It’s back. Just an accident.

Kyle J September 6, 2007 at 8:43 am

Whew. For a moment, I thought Timo’s double was all just a dream . . .

Dave T. September 6, 2007 at 10:54 am

The Tigs have 23 games left?
Yanks have 22, they will go probably at least 12-10 maybe 14-8
Tigers have to go 17-6 if they do the latter
We really need a winning streak!

Tbone September 6, 2007 at 11:24 am

It’s going to be an uphill slog to reach the Wild Card but I’ll be cheering them on until the fat lady sings.

freetz September 6, 2007 at 11:37 am

There was a comment before yesterday’s game to the effect of, “Now that I realize that the Tigers won’t make the playoffs, I can enjoy watching the games again.”

Now, at first, this made me upset because I’d been hanging onto hope, and took that first loss to the White Sox badly. However, now I realize that commenter was correct. No matter how well they play from now to the end, the Tigers making the playoffs is still a long-shot. You must release any expectation, because they do not, as the saying goes, control their own destiny. Instead of giving myself an ulcer, I just going to enjoy the final month.

Andrew September 6, 2007 at 12:00 pm

I’m not giving up yet. It’s way too soon. With Rogers and Sheffield back, we still have a fighting chance. Indians still have to play 8 games away against the Angels and late against the Mariners. Those brutal road trips we went through are just getting to them now. Plus they still have 3 against us. The more realistic opponent we are contending against, the Yankees, has a starting rotation in flux, still has 3 away against the Red Sox, 7 home and away against Toronto, who have been playing quite well lately, and 3 against Tampa at Tropicana field, and Tampa gives the Yankees fits. So like I said, lot’s of baseball left to be played. I’m not giving up on the Tigs yet. Not saying we don’t have our own problems or that we control out own destiny, because we don’t, but we are NOT eliminated yet by any means. I’ve got a good feeling about the players we just got back. The team that will play today is pretty much the team we expected to be playing coming out out of Spring Training (finally!) minus the fact that Durbin is starting, and I don’t think Chad Durbin has been a negative addition to the Tigs at all. So I still believe.

ron September 6, 2007 at 12:22 pm

Sheffield will have to carry the wole team on his back for three weeks and hopefully inspire the team by his play. He is our last hope.

Dave T. September 6, 2007 at 12:39 pm

Tampa Bay is mathematically eliminated.
At least we can still hope!

Kevin in Austin September 6, 2007 at 12:51 pm

Here’s the thing guys – had I just come back to earth from a long sojourn to the moon, I’d look at things and think “heck, Kenny Rogers and Sheffield have been on the DL for the better part of the past two months, and the Tigers are only 3.5 games out of the Wild Card? They’ve got a great shot.”

But that’s not the perspective of a day in/day out fan. Now, I just spent a while looking up records and calculating winning percentages since early/mid July, but we all know the numbers.

Point is that it is going to take two miracles to win this thing – a reversal of how we are playing as well as a reversal of how the Yankees have been playing. That’s a tall order.

Chris in Nashville September 6, 2007 at 12:54 pm

I agree with Ron…..to me…all year…its as Sheffield goes, so goes the Tigers. When Sheff struggled at the beginning of the year, we weren’t great. When he was hot for May, June and most of July, we were the best team in baseball. Since he’s been hurt and/or injured, we have been bad again. If he can get hot and stay healthy the last few weeks, we still have a chance. This team is due to go on a tear, this is their last chance to make it happen.

Jim September 6, 2007 at 1:00 pm

Indians start a four gamer against LA…Hope the Angels can do some damage

lets go tigers!

Tbone September 6, 2007 at 1:35 pm

Two 1st pitch swings and a Rabelout quickly foil Maggs double. Too much of that lately.

cib September 6, 2007 at 1:36 pm

Damn. Same old issues. Three chances to get him home but Magglio’s left standing there on second. I’m not energized.

Dave T. September 6, 2007 at 1:36 pm

Shame to strand Maggs

Kevin in Austin September 6, 2007 at 1:42 pm

I blame Guillen there, needed to get him over for the rooks.

Jim September 6, 2007 at 1:44 pm

*giggles*

Brandon Inge is not impressed with what we say.

Andrew September 6, 2007 at 1:45 pm

Inge!! Um yeah, we could really use him heating up. That would be nice.

Tbone September 6, 2007 at 1:46 pm

Who is this guy playing 3rd base for us today and what did he do with Brandon?

Timo and Inge are torturing their DTW faithful and we love it!

ron September 6, 2007 at 1:46 pm

Brandon can help carry the team too. Sheffield should’nt have to do it by himself.

Dave T. September 6, 2007 at 1:49 pm

If Inge gets hot…watch out!

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 1:49 pm

Here’s something. I work for a newspaper and do the baseball “agate” (stats) page a lot. Until this week, Sheffield, despite his injury was in the top five in the AL in runs scored. We need his plate discipline if only to take walks….of course Sheff is swinging away today.

Dave T. September 6, 2007 at 1:52 pm

Nobody in the white sox lineup today is batting over .270 let alone .300

tiff September 6, 2007 at 2:14 pm

not a bad job by Durbin (from what I can tell on the radio broadcast). I’d like to see some insurance runs though…

cib September 6, 2007 at 2:18 pm

WHERE IS OUR OFFENSE? Durbin looks good but we’ve got to get more baserunners. Maybe we can get something going here – -

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 2:19 pm

Inge…another hit. Time to cash out the life insurance.

ron September 6, 2007 at 2:20 pm

Gary who? Brandon da man.

Tbone September 6, 2007 at 2:23 pm

Two more stranded – ugh.

Jim September 6, 2007 at 2:24 pm

I dont like Juan Uribe. Like the poor mans less talented craptastic version of Vlad Guerro

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 2:24 pm

Jeez…shouldn’t Uribe be locked up in a Domincan prison right now?

cib September 6, 2007 at 2:26 pm

WTF??? Is anyone watching who can tell me why Durbin has been taken out???

Andrew September 6, 2007 at 2:26 pm

Wow, how many guys have we stranded today?

Dave T. September 6, 2007 at 2:26 pm

GRILLI!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Rob September 6, 2007 at 2:47 pm

I think we need to officially begin to stop the anti-Grilli stuff. He is not Zumaya, but he has been quite effective of late, and has been effective for other stretches this year.

I also note that he has been FAR better after Zoom and Rodney’s return.

Mark in Chicago September 6, 2007 at 2:51 pm

Mike Hessman is not good and has no business on a major league roster.

In his defense, Leyland should not be asking him to bunt.

cib September 6, 2007 at 2:52 pm

Oh Jeez. Didn’t anyone tell Rabelo that Buehrle is the pickoff king??? Damn.

Amen Rob on Grilli.

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 2:53 pm

Inge…Grilli…what’s going on in the world?

MSL September 6, 2007 at 2:53 pm

Why is Thames not playing 1st base?

Stephen September 6, 2007 at 2:56 pm

I’m psyched about Inge getting hot. But seriously, Grandy can’t get any more at-bats against lefties. I haven’t done the math, but he’s gotta now be around .148

Dave T. September 6, 2007 at 2:56 pm

How deep was Granderson’s fly ball?

Tbone September 6, 2007 at 2:58 pm

I can’t believe we’ve only scored 4 runs in 27 innings against White Sox pitching. Hang in there bullpen!

MSL September 6, 2007 at 2:58 pm

Oh boy. Let the meltdown begin.

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 2:59 pm

Fitting, Inge gets three hits and lets the potential tying run single off his glove. The boy has no luck.

cib September 6, 2007 at 3:00 pm

I still want to know why Durbin was taken out when he was. I’m only watching on gameday but there didn’t seem to be any reason.

I’m just resigned to calamity right now, so I’m not panicked or heartbroken or whatever anymore, but I really need that one explained to me just from a basic baseball point of view.

Rob September 6, 2007 at 3:00 pm

Ugh. We really need a strikeout here!!!

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 3:00 pm

at least rodney fielded the bunt without throwing it away. of course fields is up, meaning he’ll he a homer to deep left center…again.

Adam September 6, 2007 at 3:01 pm

Oh crap.

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 3:02 pm

It’s hard to imagine who has a more fragile pyschee, Rodney or Bonderman.

Rob September 6, 2007 at 3:02 pm

Ummmmm….. time to take Rodney out, and put Zoom Zoom in. Or someone else.

Bill A \ Kal MI September 6, 2007 at 3:02 pm

Bench Rodney for the weekend!

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 3:03 pm

Jeez…i can already sense the Pierzy double up the gap.

Mark in Chicago September 6, 2007 at 3:03 pm

cib,

I don’t think Durbin is stretched out as a starter, so he was probably only good for about 75 pitches or so.

Meanwhile, the meltdown has commenced. Please, Rodney. Please just get out of the inning without allowing a run.

Too bad it’s Pierszynski, the easiest guy in the league to hate. Here comes another reason….

Bill A \ Kal MI September 6, 2007 at 3:04 pm

that K was a gimmie

Rob September 6, 2007 at 3:04 pm

YEAH! Way to go Rodney!

Adam September 6, 2007 at 3:04 pm

Oh crap. (Not a double post, just a double sentiment.)

cib September 6, 2007 at 3:06 pm

Adam I am still remembering your post about baseball for baseball’s sake, but Oh Crap is right.

Adam September 6, 2007 at 3:07 pm

MOTHERSLDSFJODFJSDLKFS

Bill A \ Kal MI September 6, 2007 at 3:07 pm

ball in the dirt with a man on 3d geees

Rob September 6, 2007 at 3:07 pm

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 3:08 pm

Obviously a second guess, but with the bullpen taxed last night, Durbin could have gone out for the seventh. He was only at 78 pitches.

Damnit.

Ben in Denver September 6, 2007 at 3:08 pm

I concur.

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 3:09 pm

Again…our pitchers giving waaaaaay too much of the plate ahead in the count with two strikes.

Kevin in Austin September 6, 2007 at 3:10 pm

Those first two hits were crap. I’m not disappointed with Rodney there.

Mark in Chicago September 6, 2007 at 3:10 pm

Sadly, the game will be lost not as we let in runs 1 and 2, but it will be runs 3 and 4 coming up the kill us.

Kyle J September 6, 2007 at 3:11 pm

Even if Durbin stays in through the 6th, Rodney still pitches the 8th. Got to an 0-2 count and 2 outs. Nuts

Heart of the order up in the bottom of the 8th. Better score now before Jenks comes in for the 9th.

Stephen September 6, 2007 at 3:11 pm

Well, if you can’t take two out of three at home from a last place team that the announcers are saying are giving up at-bats, you have no business being in any kind of playoff mix. They’ve got to get a run here or we’re gonna be talking about the team’s balky aorta again.

Tbone September 6, 2007 at 3:11 pm

Unbelievable – we can’t get a clutch hit to save our lives and the Sox deliver with their .260 hitting clean-up guy.

Kyle J September 6, 2007 at 3:12 pm

“Balky Aorta” would be an excellent name for a rock band.

Teymour September 6, 2007 at 3:12 pm

Lets see what the intact offense can do now

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 3:12 pm

Maybe there is some hope with Polanco-Sheff-Maggs…but I doubt anyone is holding their breath out there.

cib September 6, 2007 at 3:12 pm

This sucks and it all goes back to many of the comments about everyone giving a little more. Durbin should have stayed in. What are they saving for?? Certainly not October with these decisions being made. I’m just mad now.

Mark in Chicago September 6, 2007 at 3:13 pm

Buttfish owns us.

Bill A \ Kal MI September 6, 2007 at 3:13 pm

should have benched Rodney when he walked Fields or bet yet when Thome singled

sometime I think Leyland is totally incapable of assessing pitcher performance. and as we said in the Army: Hope is not a method.

Rob September 6, 2007 at 3:13 pm

Ok, maybe we can rally here. C’mon Sheff!!!

Kevin in Austin September 6, 2007 at 3:13 pm

This guy sucks, let him walk in a run. Gotta score now before getting to Jenks.

Stephen September 6, 2007 at 3:14 pm

Balky Aorta will be opening for the re-formed Dead Milkmen at the Royal Oak Music Theatre…

J September 6, 2007 at 3:14 pm

C’mon with the 2nd guessing. Durbin can not go more than 80 pitches. When he is fully strecthed that is about his max. Thats why he is really a 5th starter/middle relief guy. The Tigers are not going to lose this game because Durbin was taken out. So what if Rodney gets torched in the 7th or 8th.

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 3:15 pm

Welll…I hate to say it, but it keeps Durbin from getting a win against me in my fantasy playoffs this week.

Thank god Polanco took a pitch up 3-1.

Stephen September 6, 2007 at 3:15 pm

Seriously, we have 3 outs to move a guy 90 yards. Pleeeeeaaaassssse!!!

Kathy September 6, 2007 at 3:15 pm

It’s my birthday tomorrow. This sure would be a nice gift if they could win this one.

J September 6, 2007 at 3:15 pm

C’mon with the 2nd guessing. Durbin can not go more than 80 pitches. When he is fully strecthed that is about his max. Thats why he is really a 5th starter/middle relief guy. The Tigers are not going to lose this game because Durbin was taken out. So what if Rodney gets torched in the 7th or 8th. They will lose today because our bullpen cant hold a lead and our offense cant get a clutch hit.

Bill A \ Kal MI September 6, 2007 at 3:15 pm

see

Ozzie got enough sense to git him a pitcher after Polly walked

Mark in Chicago September 6, 2007 at 3:16 pm

I think Kyle hit it. Even if Durbin could have stayed in another one or two innings, he wouldn’t have gone out for the eighth, Rodney would still have pitched.

The offense scored one run. You aren’t going to win many games 1-0.

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 3:18 pm

C’mon we need a nice ChiSox bullpen implosion and an Ozzie tirade, right?

cib September 6, 2007 at 3:20 pm

J, we are whiny bloggers. Second guessing is what we do.

We’re just really sad is all. Fortunately I am going to a dinner tonight where there will be free and plentiful adult beverages.

Oh, and come on all of you guys, come to the game Tuesday night with Billfer and me, etc. Also I have an extra for next Wednesday night’s game if anyone is interested.

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 3:20 pm

Well….good to see even with Sheff the No. 3 hole remains a black hole.

Mark in Chicago September 6, 2007 at 3:23 pm

I know it’s unfair to Maggs because he’s been so good all year (and it’s selective sampling), but his last three “clutch” at-bats have been less than stellar.

Stephen September 6, 2007 at 3:25 pm

Rod Allen, I’d like to take your 1927 Yankees statement and give you a colonoscopy.

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 3:27 pm

wow…a leadoff walk with the heart of the lineup coming up and we can’t even move him up a base. if this isn’t a dead team i don’t know what is. Four runs in close to 28 innings against CWS pitching. Unreal.

Tbone September 6, 2007 at 3:28 pm

I can’t believe we’ve only scored 4 runs in 28 innings aginst White Sox pitching.

Kevin in Austin September 6, 2007 at 3:28 pm

Mike hit the nail on the head.

This is a dead team.

Mark in Chicago September 6, 2007 at 3:28 pm

I missed it. Did Guillen swing at the first pitch?

Stephen September 6, 2007 at 3:29 pm

Last year’s 19-31 stretch, meet this year’s 20-30!

Is it possible that our team not collapse TWO years in a row? Is that too much to ask for; not to be the worst team in the majors?

Bill A \ Kal MI September 6, 2007 at 3:29 pm

tee hee see ya Podnick!

Stephen September 6, 2007 at 3:29 pm

Yes he did!

Bill A \ Kal MI September 6, 2007 at 3:30 pm

Urbe have a seat next to Podnick

Mark in Chicago September 6, 2007 at 3:32 pm

All things considered, Bobby Seay is a capable lefty out of the pen. I like him.

Bill A \ Kal MI September 6, 2007 at 3:33 pm

cintron you can join the others

c’mon Tigers we need runners on base

Andrew September 6, 2007 at 3:34 pm

Kathy, it’s my birthday tomorrow too. I’m hoping for the same thing.

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 3:35 pm

The question…unless the first two runners get on base (for a bunt) who pitch hits for Santiago…Casey, Thames or Maybin or Pudge…if he doesn’t hit for Rabelo.

T Smith September 6, 2007 at 3:35 pm

***They will lose today because our bullpen cant hold a lead and our offense cant get a clutch hit***

Wow. That sounds like the story in exactly 48 of our 66 loses.

Andrew September 6, 2007 at 3:35 pm

Fatty Jenks

Bill A \ Kal MI September 6, 2007 at 3:36 pm

we almost booted this Jenks the other night let’s finish him off here today

Rob September 6, 2007 at 3:36 pm

TIMO!!!!!!

Stephen September 6, 2007 at 3:36 pm

I don’t care how you do it, but someone’s got to get hit by pitch, steal a base.

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 3:36 pm

Oh my god…

Bill A \ Kal MI September 6, 2007 at 3:36 pm

man on scoring position nobody out good start we got this bum

Dave T. September 6, 2007 at 3:36 pm

TIMO!

charlie September 6, 2007 at 3:37 pm

starting in left field TEEEEEMOO

Mark in Chicago September 6, 2007 at 3:37 pm

Timo to the rescue? Again?

Andrew September 6, 2007 at 3:37 pm

Yes, I’m resorting to name calling.

Kathy September 6, 2007 at 3:37 pm

Don’t get too excited. We all know how this could end.

Chris September 6, 2007 at 3:37 pm

For some reason, the White Sox owns the Tigers this year. They save all their best pitching for this team. Then they promply serve up batting practice to The Yanks and the Indians. This team is the bain of the Tigers existance. They have done more to ruin the Tigers season more than any other team.

Bill A \ Kal MI September 6, 2007 at 3:38 pm

we should see Casey bat for Horseman

Mark in Chicago September 6, 2007 at 3:39 pm

Side note — Mike Maroth pitching in St. Louis. I thought he was done for the year, what happened?

greg September 6, 2007 at 3:39 pm

Ok, all we need is a bunt and a flyball, the fundamentals that everyone should have down pat in High School ball

J September 6, 2007 at 3:40 pm

cib:

I am one as well. I just am trying to come to grips with the fact that this team is in the middle of an utter and complete meltdown!

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 3:40 pm

can Casey come through with three straight ninth inning RBI hits?

Dave T. September 6, 2007 at 3:40 pm

i wish i could see sean casey stretching out his hips right now

Rob September 6, 2007 at 3:40 pm

Great job by Rabelo bunting fair with two strikes!

Bill A \ Kal MI September 6, 2007 at 3:40 pm

cool

Go Casey

Adam September 6, 2007 at 3:41 pm

Oh man, this team is so dead.

Quiet down. :P

Rob September 6, 2007 at 3:41 pm

Nice base knock…. pretty much all we can hope for from Sean!

Tbone September 6, 2007 at 3:41 pm

Resurrected from the dead for the second time this week! Let’s make this one count boys. We have no business losing this game…

greg September 6, 2007 at 3:42 pm

If they don’t resign Casey, I think they should give him a million dollar bonus just for that single right there!

:-)

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 3:42 pm

It would be nice to just end this right here and now, huh?

Stephen September 6, 2007 at 3:42 pm

2 errors ruled as hits. But I’ll take it!

Mark in Chicago September 6, 2007 at 3:42 pm

Up to 120 posts for a day game when chances are many of us (including me) are at work.

I don’t care what you all say, you’re still hoping this team can pull off a playoff spot.

Me too.

go tigers

cib September 6, 2007 at 3:43 pm

OMG! I actually did some work for a while and look what happened!! I’m going to stop following again, they do better without me.

Bill A \ Kal MI September 6, 2007 at 3:43 pm

go Grandy

Stephen September 6, 2007 at 3:44 pm

Now we find out if this team alive or just giving us a Schiavo fake brainwave blip.

Adam September 6, 2007 at 3:44 pm

C’mon GRANDY!

Mark in Chicago September 6, 2007 at 3:45 pm

Stephen,

ouch. too early

;)

Kathy September 6, 2007 at 3:47 pm

Happy Birthday everybody!

Bill A \ Kal MI September 6, 2007 at 3:48 pm

Pow!

got him!

Adam September 6, 2007 at 3:48 pm

FIRST PITCH POLANCO!!!!

Kyle J September 6, 2007 at 3:48 pm

In play, run(s)

Yes!

Riley September 6, 2007 at 3:48 pm

POLLY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 3:48 pm

It’ll be tough to catch the Yankees falling back four games if we lose today with their sked.

at KC (3)
at Tor (3)
at Bos (3)
vs. Bal (3)
vs. Tor (4)
at TB (3)
at Bal (3)

Gotta hope that Jays pitching holds up. Or that that Carlos Pena character continues his spot on impersonation of that guy who used to play in Detroit.

Chris September 6, 2007 at 3:48 pm

YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

Rob September 6, 2007 at 3:49 pm

Polanco…… IS DA MAN

Kevin in Austin September 6, 2007 at 3:49 pm

Wow. Glad I was still tuned in. I think the baseball gods were sitting around during their Wed meeting and one of them said, hey – are we still pissing on the Tigers every week? Shouldn’t that have ended a while ago?

Teymour September 6, 2007 at 3:49 pm

Polly!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This is what we call a winning streak

Mark in Chicago September 6, 2007 at 3:49 pm

Holy.

#$%@

We won.

wha-

bu-

how?

Andrew September 6, 2007 at 3:49 pm

Nice!!!!

greg September 6, 2007 at 3:49 pm

gotta love a guy who can consistently make contact

:-)

Shane trapped in Athens, Ohio September 6, 2007 at 3:50 pm

Alright, another win for Bobby Seay!!!!

Bill A \ Kal MI September 6, 2007 at 3:51 pm

Inge detracters are buy’n again tonite

cib September 6, 2007 at 3:51 pm

Wow. Timo!! This one was really sweet.

Off to dinner. Have a great evening, all.

Andrew September 6, 2007 at 3:51 pm

HUGE!!!

Stephen September 6, 2007 at 3:51 pm

Dr. Frankenstein: Look! It’s moving. It’s alive. It’s alive… It’s alive, it’s moving, it’s alive, it’s alive, it’s alive, it’s alive, IT’S ALIVE!

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 3:51 pm

If they lose….who’s the idiot that posted that. Never in doubt.

Timo sticking it to us. And Inge…four production abs

Andrew September 6, 2007 at 3:52 pm

Just when I was all set to say something about the only constant for the Tigers this year is their inconsistency they go and win 2 in a row!

Other than Rodney losing the battle to Konerko (well, and loading the bases) the bullpen did a great job again today. They gave the Tigers a chance to win it and that is about all we can ask for.

Stephen September 6, 2007 at 3:52 pm

Bill, does that mean you were buying for the last six weeks?

Andrew September 6, 2007 at 3:53 pm

Happy Birthday Kathy!!

Mike in CT September 6, 2007 at 3:54 pm

Let’s hope they bury the Mariners this weekend.

Batista v. Verlander (good)
Weaver v. Robertson (coin flip)
King Felix v. Bondo (cross your fingers)

Stephen September 6, 2007 at 3:54 pm

Price just asking Polanco ‘is the team getting the feeling like in 06 that you can win any game?’ Gotta love the delirium of a two game winning streak. Mind you, not complaining!

Chris September 6, 2007 at 3:58 pm

Four very productive at-bats. Wow!

Inge also got a hit which led to the game winning run in last nite. Maybe his mid-to-late season slup is about to end, and he can turn the tide on his dreadful season.

Teymour September 6, 2007 at 3:58 pm

Two scratch out wins are huge. That’s two games in a row where we win scoring less than 4 runs.

More importantly 3 games back can be overcame, but 4 would have been tough.

Lets go, the offense is back, the starting pitching is back to normal, kind of.

And the Bull Pen is consistently inconsistent.

charlie September 6, 2007 at 3:59 pm

happy birthday kathy and andrew…in case you’re not here tomorrow. nice win guys.

bilfer, i thought about joining you for bloggers nite but the travel alone from western canada would be $1500.00…my wife would want to go…so i hope some locals buy your tickets and i’m hoping you all have a great one.

cheers all

tiff September 6, 2007 at 4:08 pm

I convienently had to slip out of work to get an oil change, so I actually got to listen to the rest of the game… I’m sure everyone driving past me on the way back to work thought was some type of fool, clapping and screaming at the top of my lungs: POLLY!!

Key for Granderson to get hit by a pitch… I don’t think he was going to make contact.

Key for Rabelo to bunt on two strikes.

It shouldn’t have been this close, but since it was, I’m glad we eeked out both wins!

Vince in MN September 6, 2007 at 4:09 pm

Tomorrow the Tigers can break a trend: since the three-game sweep of Minnesota July 17-19, they have not won more than 2 in a row.

Bill A \ Kal MI September 6, 2007 at 4:16 pm

Bill, does that mean you were buying for the last six weeks?

only complainers are accorded the privilige of buying ( tee hee ) but if ya was here I’d love ta buy ya one!!

Vince in MN September 6, 2007 at 4:23 pm

Poor Mike Maroth only lasted 1.2 innings – 6 hits 2 BB, and left with the bases loaded.

Andrew September 6, 2007 at 4:26 pm

Thanks Charlie. This one was a pretty good early present.

Steve in OH September 6, 2007 at 4:49 pm

I was stuck in a conference call, but great win and Polly is amazing as usual – Go Tigs!

T Smith September 6, 2007 at 6:40 pm

The Tigers have managed to match their longest win streak since July 19. They’ve also managed their first ninth-inning come back since April.

It’s reason for hope (and I will remain hopeful); but the reality it, this team has to go 18-4 over the next 22 games to gain a playoff spot. That’s a tall order. In fact, that’s a collosal order for a team that has now won just two series of the last 13. If they can pull off an eight or nine game win streak, the Tigers might warrent serious discussion about playoff possibilites. Until then, the Tigers playing in October is equivalent to a Hail Mary pass at the buzzer.

Stephen September 6, 2007 at 8:27 pm

It is astounding the year Granderson is having considering he is the league’s worst hitter against lefties. Against righties, he’s averaging an extra base hit every 6.1 at bats! Yowza.

(Um, I’m guessing .162 is the league’s worst in a significantly significant sample size. Then again, I’ve been wrong a time or two two thousand before).

[sorry, i initially posted in wrong comment group. see? wrong alread!]

billfer September 6, 2007 at 9:21 pm

Um, I’m guessing .162 is the league’s worst in a significantly significant sample size. Then again, I’ve been wrong a time or two two thousand before

I’m not going to quibble the main assertion that Granderson may have one of the worst batting averages against lefties, just the part that the sample is significant in that he only has 111 at-bats (at least going into today) this year. While it sounds like a lot, 111 at-bats doesn’t tell you a whole lot.

Take the case of a hitter where you know his talent level to be a .300 hitter. And then randomly sample 100 of his at-bats. The 95% confidence interval for the batting average in those 100 at bats would be .210-.390.

I’m not saying that Granderson is really a good hitter against lefties and we just haven’t seen it yet. The numbers are what the numbers are and he’s been really bad. I’m just saying that 100ish at-bats isn’t nearly enough to judge his talent level.

Stephen September 6, 2007 at 9:46 pm

How about 58 for 284 career wise? Let’s give him a generous 4 for 16 over the next three weeks which gets us up to 300 at-bats. That’s .207 for the career.

billfer September 6, 2007 at 10:07 pm

How about 58 for 284 career wise? Let’s give him a generous 4 for 16 over the next three weeks which gets us up to 300 at-bats. That’s .207 for the career.

How about it what? If you’re wondering what the 95% confidence interval for a .207 hitter in 300 ABs it is 161-253.

I’m not saying he’s good at hitting lefties, just pointing out that 100 ab’s doesn’t tell you a lot.

And while we’re playing with probability, the chance of a .207 hitter getting at least 4 hits in 16 at bats is 43%.

Kyle J September 6, 2007 at 10:11 pm

A cause for hope: Last year Grady Sizemore batted .214 vs. left-handers. That was his second full year in the majors–equivalent to this season for Granderson. This year, Sizemore’s up over .270 vs. left-handers.

Matt in Toledo September 6, 2007 at 10:18 pm

He also only has a .275 BABIP against lefties. Take that up to .300 and he’s batting more like .218. Take it up to his career .344 BABIP (admittedly flawed logic) and he’s hitting something like .246. Even if those were all singles, that would put his OPS against lefties up around .700, which I could certainly live with considering his defense and how well he hits right-handers.

Curtis is a hard worker and sounds like an intelligent player who’s very committed to improving. I think he’ll eventually be fine against lefties as he continues to work and the luck breaks his way a little more.

Stephen September 6, 2007 at 11:27 pm

Well, it’s unclear what we’re arguing here. My original point is the dude is having a stratsopheric year–an extra base hit every sixth at-bat against righties– all the more remarkable considering his hitting against lefties is on par with a good-hitting National League pitcher. Maybe he’ll get better against lefties, maybe he won’t, but he’s logged almost 300 at bats against lefties and hitting slightly north of the Mendoza line ain’t good. We can talk all we want about confidence intervals, but the actual data is he can’t hit lefties. That’s not based on a handful of at-bats, it is based on two plus years of at-bats. And the numbers have skewed downward from 2005 to 2006 to 2007. (Admittedly slender sampling data from 05) Granderson is a hard worker and I sure hope he gets better because that’s what stands between him having to be platooned and a MVP caliber career.

Re: “Take the case of a hitter where you know his talent level to be a .300 hitter. And then randomly sample 100 of his at-bats. The 95% confidence interval for the batting average in those 100 at bats would be .210-.390.”

That sounds good but the premise is incorrect. That’s basing this all on the assumption that batter is a .300 hitter when it comes to the specifics of facing lefties. If we’re going on the data it would be “take a hitter where you know his talent level against lefties is . 207 and then establish a 95% confidence interval from there.”

Here’s hoping he has a Sizemore-esque rebound. As of now, Granderson’s a microcosm of this entertaining, tantalizing, and ultimately frustrating team. He’s there along with the Hall of Fame catcher who can’t walk, the #2 starter who fluctuates between Cy Young and meatballer, the two-time Manager of the Year who bats Timo Perez third, and a consensus top-notch GM with stellar drafts, but who did nothing trade wise to help this team since April.

David September 7, 2007 at 12:31 am

…Hmmm

We all know he hasn’t hit lefties very well, but he is a very strong reason why our team has a record very close to .500 against righties

3rd most total bases in the AL after Maggs and Arod.

1st in the majors for outfield PO. 2nd in CF in the majors for Outfield Assists.

Going to have a 20-20-20-20 season not exactly common.

Very articulate, smart and over-the-top nice to fans.

Has his own blog which you can unlike other ESPN pages view for free.

Has his own Myspace.

From what I hear he is always trying to improve.

Didn’t complain when they moved him to left and Maybin to center.

Has only been hit 1x this WHOLE season.

ONLY 1 GIDP this year.

The only other BAD thing about him is that he doesn’t hit well in the clutch. Close and Late, RISP.

If I were building a team today and could have a pick of any 3 outfielders he would be one I would choose.

If ‘yall don’t know by now Stepehen is an extreme glass-half-empty guy.

BTW not to jinx Brandon but…

Also with what has been pointed out, INGE hits lefties very well, and righties not as much esp when he’s not going good.

Inge SHOULD leadoff against lefties and Grandy SHOULD bat in the 9 hole.

BTW 2 days ago I said we would have to go at the very least 17-7 to make it in. Maybe another win or 2 because the WC winner should be in the low 90s if not 90.

well now its 15-7………

Greg September 7, 2007 at 1:12 am

The Tigers have to go 18-4? Maybe to win the division, but to just make the playoffs, they really don’t have to do much, they’re only 3 games back, that’s a gnat’s eyelash. I’m not sure a week has gone by in MLB history without multiple teams gaining/losing 3 games on multiple teams.

Heck, if they go 18-4, they’d have a shot at the #1 seed and home field throughout the playoffs!

Kurt September 7, 2007 at 2:39 am

If the Tigers have to go 18-4, the Yankees are winning 64% of their games.

Keep in mind the Yanks are making just one homestand the rest of the season. That’s a pretty tall order for a team playing under .500 on the road. If the Yankees were to do that, more power to them and their wild card.

billfer September 7, 2007 at 7:27 am

I’ll say it for the 3rd time, I’m not arguing his performance or lack thereof against lefties. Just a general point that 100ish or even 300ish at-bats can be misleading when it comes to judging a player’s talent. I wasn’t implying Granderson was a .300 hitter, it was a hypothetical example – sorry about the confusion. I just picked it because it was a round number.

So

That sounds good but the premise is incorrect. That’s basing this all on the assumption that batter is a .300 hitter when it comes to the specifics of facing lefties.

the premise is perfectly fine. The same holds true if you start doing it for splits and say a hitter’s talent level is .300 against lefties so the confidence inteveral for his next 100 at-bats against lefties is 210-390.

So if Granderson hits .240 against lefties next year it doesn’t necessarily mean he’s made a huge adjustment. It may just be variation. At the same time, it doesn’t mean that he’s not making adjustments, there just isn’t enough data to tell.

And moving beyond the confidence interval stuff, I don’t know that anything has fundamentally changed in his talent level against lefties. His striekout rate has remained the same the last two years, and as Kyle pointed out his BABIP is the difference between the 2 years, and that is the portion that is more prone to variation. What isn’t available to help answer the question is the distribution of the types of batted balls against lefties the last 2 years, which would help to answer the luck question. If he’s hitting a lot more infield flies or fewer line drives then that would lend iself to a talent issue, if those numbers are the same it’s more of a luck issue.

Kyle J September 7, 2007 at 8:14 am

That was Matt who pointed out the drop in BABIP.

Again, we’re back to the fundamental question of whether randomness has any impact on a player’s/team’s performance.

Jim September 7, 2007 at 8:38 am

Indians lost, incase anyone cares anymore?

T Smith September 7, 2007 at 9:52 am

The Yankees have been winning roughly 64% of their games since June. There is no reason to expect them to go .500 here on out, especially against oppenents like KC, Devil Rays, Orioles (without Bedard). Their toughest stretch (and only stretch against a playoff team) is against the RedSox at Fenway this weekend; hopefully they will lose that series. (Bear in mind the Red Sox have been doing a bit of choking of their own lately against the Yanks) The Yankees also have a few games against the Blue Jays, which shouldn’t be an easy set of games, but they seem to have the Blue Jays number, too.

The key here is to be realistic. Sure, the Yankees could collapse and the Indians could collapse — in which case 16-6, maybe even 15-7 would be enough — but it’s just not realistic to expect either of those two teams to collapse down the stretch. It’s more realistic to elevate expectations, get on a streak, and win. The Tigers have done it before. With Sheff in the lineup and Rogers back, and the bullpen in tact, they are equipped to do it again — they NEED to do it again.

I’m not too worried about the Marniers because at least we have a three game series left with them. Win or sweep that series (which is a must, regardless) and we control our destiny vs. the Ms. I’m also extremely hopeful the Angels will cool off the Tribe and knock them back down to earth. They are the perfect team to do it. It would be sweet to be within some kind of striking distance when we go against the Tribe.

billfer September 7, 2007 at 10:07 am

One could also say the Yankees are a .500 team except for one hot streak where they went 26-10 in July and August. Keep in mind that this team had a 50 game stretch where they went 21-29.

I don’t really know how many games the Yankees will win, you’re 640 win pct since June may be right, or maybe they are the team that has played .500 ball over their last 22.

I’m not even really factoring the Indians at this point, because they’d have to out and out lose the division at this point. But the Tigers are still in a position where they could simply outperform the Yankees (and Mariners) by 3 wins.

Regardless, I agree that the Tigers have to play really really well to have a shot, and why blowing 7 run leads proves to be so costly.

T Smith September 7, 2007 at 10:16 am

***Brandon doesn’t have to get really hot to help the team***

I respectfully disagree. Brandon Inge has to produce if this team is going to win. Grant it, “really hot” is an arbitrary quantifier, but by hot I mean he has to be perceived by opposing pitchers as a threat, either a power threat or a threat to get on base/move runners up/deliver the RBI. He also has to do so every now and then and contribute. You can’t expect two or three offensive players to carry a team. The past two months Inge has been perceived as anything but, and more the equivalent of a NL pitcher batting ninth.

It is really nice to see the string of clutch hitting from Brandon the past couple games. It’s no coincidence the Tigers managed to win this series given Brandon’s bat finally helped out the team. The Tigers easily could have been swept (by perhaps the worst team in baseball) if it weren’t for Inge coming thru, as he’s paid to come thru. He needs to continue now.

The main issue I see with the recent offesive sputtering (and the obscene amount of runners LOB) is the huge holes in the lineup. The Tigers would begin a rally, and the other team would just pitch around productive hitters, e.g. Polly, Maggs, Guillen, Casey, etc., to get to Inge, Pudge, (Grandy against Lefties, etc.). Obviously Sheff back in the lineup will help with that. But the point is, what difference does it make if you have Maggs, Polly, Guillen if you can get your outs from the rest of the lineup and leave them on base anyway?

We need Pudge and Inge to see the ball well and begin hitting if there is any chance to pull off the aforementioned streak to a playoff berth.

billfer September 7, 2007 at 10:54 am

Yeah, there’s ambiguity in really hot. But if he can contribute a 330ish obp and 450ish slugging, like he averaged from 2004-2006, that will be enough to help the team in that it is average-ish production instead of the black hole that has existed since the end of June.

Kurt September 7, 2007 at 11:11 am

Have you seen the Yankees lately? They are not exactly playing .640 ball for the past couple weeks. Before the hot streak, they weren’t playing .640 ball. I think you’re reading way too much into July. But we’ll see.

Bill A \ Kal MI September 7, 2007 at 11:22 am

I don’t give a rat’s tail if Grandy can hit lefties or not. He is a DYNAMITE player, absolutely TERRIFFIC!!

not just defense
not just hitting ( he’s been flirting with 300 )
not just base running

Grandy is pure energy and he helps spark the team and you can’t hang numbers on that but guess what it’s a key to success

Kyle J September 7, 2007 at 12:46 pm

BP projects a mean outcome of the Yankees going 12-10 down the stretch (.545).

Under that scenario, the Tigers need to go 15-7 to force a tie. The BP projections give us a 23 percent chance of making the playoffs.

In the words of Jim Carrey in Dumb and Dumber: “So you’re saying there’s a chance?!”

ron September 7, 2007 at 12:53 pm

Not only is Grandy a wonderful player to watch, but a really good guy off the field. In this day and age, it is so nice to see. As for the team ,it amazes me how a very good team can dig itself a hole for two months and then frantically try to claw it’s way out by playing baseball they should have been playing all along.

T Smith September 7, 2007 at 1:54 pm

Kurt:

I hope you’re right about the Yankees.

Three weeks ago who would have thought the Indians would be playing .800 since August 15? It’s just so hard to say what any team will do/won’t do. The Yankees have a week schedule, albeit a big chunk away from the Bronx, so I guess the most optimistic call is throw up your hands and say they could go either way … I will be the first to say I overestimated the Yankees, if they happen to play .500 here on out. And obviously, that would bode well for the Tigers.

Kurt September 7, 2007 at 2:58 pm

T Smith — The thing is, both teams have a moderate strength-of-schedule remaining. I have seen it as .498 for yanks and .501 for Tigers. However, I’m not sure where that number came from originally. But mostly, I’ll accept BP’s computer as having a pretty decent estimate of what it’ll take. That did sound like a realistic number to me.

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