Game 26: Angels at Tigers
PREGAME: It’s the rubber game against the Angels after two pretty well contested battles. For the Tigers tonight is noteworthy because it will be the first time that the Tigers have their full projected lineup together. It will also be Carlos Guillen’s first start since his Mariners days at third base.
On the mound it will be Justin Verlander and Jered Weaver. Verlander reclaimed some of his missing velocity his last time out after tweaking his arm angle. He also earned his first quality start going 6 innings allowing one run.
Weaver has struggled with consistency – or a lack thereof. He’s allowed 10 hits in each of his last two outings. The time before that he allowed 5 runs on 4 hits and 4 walks. And the time before that he pitched 7 innings of 3 hit shut out ball. The Tigers have a limited, but productive history against Weaver.
LAA @ DET, Sunday, April 27, 2008 Game Preview – Baseball-Reference.com
Game Time 8:05
POSTGAME: Well that kind of sucked. Justin Verlander looked like the Verlander of old through the first 3 innings. The first run came in the 4th on a poorly played ball by Ordonez in which Verlander should have been out of the inning. And the run that scored in the 5th came on a single, a weird balk/rushed-delivery-thingy, and two fly outs. But oh man, that 6th inning…
A walk and a single and a bobble by Guillen put runners on 2nd and 3rd with one out. Verlander quickly got ahead of Torii Hunter 1-2 who had chased a curve ball down and away. After another curve ball which Hunter fouled off it seemed that Verlander had him set up for the elevated fastball for a much needed K. Instead he went back to the curve which Hunter grounded down the line, out of the reach of a pulled in Guillen scoring two more. Hardly a rocket, but why couldn’t Verlander put a free swinger like Hunter away? Why go with 3 straight curve balls?
And then the intentional walk was followed by an unintentional walk, and a ground ball single and the game was out of reach. Verlander was hardly “rocked” in this game. But in the end it added up to a horrible night as he was undone by the 3 walks in the 6th.
As for his velocity, it looked good on the ESPN gun with him at 95-96 on the fastball, but pitch f/x had him 3 mph slower. I don’t know where the truth is.
As for the offense, they were doing a good job laying off of borderline pitches and picked up two walks in each of the 3rd and 4th innings. But a double play, a caught stealing, and a pick off made sure that Weaver didn’t have to work too hard at all.
I guess the bright spot for the night was Pudge Rodriguez gunning down two baserunners with perfect throws to second.