Game 101: Tigers at Royals

PREGAME: The Tigers have now scored 500 runs on the season – exactly. That’s only 19 games later than expected by many. The Tigers also come into today’s game at 2 games over .500. That’s been their highwater mark for the season. It’s a mark they first reached on July 2nd, and they’ve gone 9-9 since then. Their playoff odds as calculated by Baseball Prospectus are at the highest (10.9%) they’ve been since that same day. Can the Tigers break through and move to the coveted 3 games over .500?

To do it they’ll have to get by Zach Grienke. Grienke has been inconsistent of late. He was hammered for 7 runs by the White Sox his last time out, but in his last 7 starts he’s also had 4 outings where he’s given up 2 runs or less. He still has great K and BB rates, but he has allowed 18 homers already this season.

Armando Galarraga threw strikes his last time out. He fanned six and walked none, but 3 of those strikes found themselves in the bleachers and he ended up surrendering 5 runs in 6.2 innings.

DET @ KCR, Wednesday, July 23, 2008 Game Preview – Baseball-Reference.com

Game Time 2:10

POSTGAME: I was the idiot blogger arguing that Armando Galarraga couldn’t keep it up – and that was back in May. I’m thrilled he keeps proving me wrong.

A potential no hitter/perfect game is so damn exciting that I don’t know how these guys can settle down and throw a pitch. I was listening at work and I was getting nervous/excited with each pitch. Dan Dickerson by the way did a great job painting the scene and his excitement was evident in his signature “and he GOT HIM ON STRIKES!”

Meanwhile it sounded like Zach Grienke was pitching a heck of a game but had some of the worst luck ever as bloops and ducks found safe harbor between the infield and outfield and a couple of well timed hits staked the Tigers to an early lead.

This was a heck of a bludgeoning that the Royals took and it should quell the jokes (which had been warranted) about the Tigers inability to beat Kansas City.

Things are set up for a monster series with the White Sox. Fortunately for the Tigers things are positioned such that as long as Detroit isn’t swept, things will still be okay. Of course anything the Tigers can do to cut into the White Sox lead – especially while playing in Comerica – would be quite the boost.

249 Comments

  1. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 1:23 pm

    The Tigers catch up with Greinke at last, who allows 5 HR (Granderson, Joyce, Ordonez, Cabrera, and Raburn) in 5 innings. Detroit piles on some more against the Royals bullpen, cruising to a 12-0 victory as Galarraga becomes the first Tigers pitcher in recorded history to hold Mark G. hitless.

  2. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 1:29 pm

    What, no Inge? He hits Greinke like he’s a Gobble…

  3. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 1:30 pm

    On the other hand, strangely enough, he doesn’t appear to be able to hit Gobble…

  4. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 1:33 pm

    Coleman – Inge has got to start, I know. I’ll give him Raburn’s HR if Ryan doesn’t start.

  5. Ryan In Brooklyn

    July 23, 2008 at 1:40 pm

    Grudzielanek.

    I did that off the top of my head – did I get it right?

  6. tom

    July 23, 2008 at 1:40 pm

    Sean: From your lips (fingers?) to the baseball god’s ears

  7. Ken in Las Vegas (formerly Cincinnati)

    July 23, 2008 at 1:54 pm

    Does anybody have the line-up yet? I’m having some Marky Marcus Thames withdrawel and would like to see him in, along with Joyce somehow….and Ty Cobb as well somehow.

  8. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 1:56 pm

    Wow. Those 5 HRs of Sean’s…they would equal 1/16 of Greineikeinieke’s career total…good luck…

    On the other hand he does give up a HR for about every 8 innings pitched so maybe it’s going to be a 40 inning complete game type of deal…

  9. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 1:58 pm

    Line-up says: Inge yes, Thames no.

  10. Joel in Seattle

    July 23, 2008 at 2:02 pm

    Pudge has a higher BA and more RBI than Inge vs. Greinke… Inge has the higher OPS, but Pudge’s BA and OBP (identical, of course) are over .400.

    They’re both significantly better than Carlos, across the board.

  11. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 2:04 pm

    C. Granderson cf
    P. Polanco 2b
    C. Guillen 3b
    M. Ordonez rf
    M. Cabrera 1b
    M. Joyce lf
    G. Sheffield dh
    E. Renteria ss
    B. Inge c

  12. Andre in Chi

    July 23, 2008 at 2:04 pm

    seems like the santiago/renteria swith is less complicated than the ongoing guillen’s bat/inge’s glove juggling…so why hasn’t it happened yet?

    i don’t know if this has been covered already, but it seems like inge doesn’t get mentioned as a possible SS. assuming that santiago isn’t getting the nod over renteria because of experience (or pay justification issues), why not go with inge at SS. you get the infield range/glove/arm and you justify the move based on pay/experience. at this point i’m not seeing renteria as an upgrade on inge’s bat.

  13. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 2:16 pm

    Of course Joel Leyland would have played Pudge with that high BA, but then he stayed up late poring over the stats and realized that although he is 10 for 24 against Greinke, 9 of the 10 hits came before 2006.

    Also, Inge has the day game thing going for him…

    Strangely enough, Inge has appeared to hit well against Greinke while CATCHING even, now that is truly a surprise.

  14. Amanda

    July 23, 2008 at 2:17 pm

    Kinda funny to see 2 huge tubs of “double bubble” gum in the dugout. Guess the days of chewing and spitting tobacco are gone. Nice hit Mags!

  15. Chris in Dallas

    July 23, 2008 at 2:24 pm

    That was a weird way to score a run

  16. tom

    July 23, 2008 at 2:29 pm

    Gameday is onboard with adverbs now, ‘Avilas grounds out softly…’. I don’t remember them as being quite so Shakespeare. Nice, though.

  17. Andre in Chi

    July 23, 2008 at 2:30 pm

    I’m following Gameday, how did that 2nd run score?

  18. tom

    July 23, 2008 at 2:30 pm

    Wow, Galarraga 11 pitches through the first. Nice.

  19. mcb.

    July 23, 2008 at 2:31 pm

    Andre –

    Mario Impemba, talking about Inge’s range:

    “…and, if needed, (Inge) could probably play shortstop.”

    (long pause by Mario and Rod)

    (play-by-play resumes)

  20. tom

    July 23, 2008 at 2:32 pm

    Sounds like Polanco scored while Ordonez was hung up in a rundown . . .

  21. tom

    July 23, 2008 at 2:33 pm

    Ok, now I need help. How did Joyce DOUBLE on a popup to the first baseman. Gotta love Gameday. . .

  22. Andre in Chi

    July 23, 2008 at 2:34 pm

    mcb –

    haha, awkward pause?

  23. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 2:34 pm

    That was just a weird way, period.

    And Gameday maybe be all softly-like now, but just wait until Aviles dribbles a “single” to shortstop, the full caps “KANSAS CITY’S MIKE AVILES EXTENDED HIS HITTING STREAK TO BLAH BLAH” thing will come screeching out like a jack out of the proverbial box.

  24. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 2:36 pm

    McB: Mario Impemba, talking about Inge’s range:
    “…and, if needed, (Inge) could probably play shortstop.”

    He could; and what’s more remarkable, MI meant he could do it from the catcher’s spot…

  25. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 2:39 pm

    tom: “Ok, now I need help. How did Joyce DOUBLE on a popup to the first baseman. Gotta love Gameday. . ”

    I’m not sure either, but it appears Inge tried the same thing, unfortunately ending up with only the typical short pop-up out. Maybe it only works if you’re left-handed.

  26. Andrew in Toronto

    July 23, 2008 at 2:41 pm

    Ordonez was running on the 3-2 pitch. Cabrera struck out. When Ordonez got caught in a run-down, Polanco scored.

    As for Joyce’s double, it was a blooper down the left field line. Either the SS or 3B just missed it.

  27. Ken in Las Vegas (formerly Cincinnati)

    July 23, 2008 at 2:43 pm

    Tom, Coleman

    It was one of those bloopers where two players go for the ball, both miss and tumble to the ground, smoke clears, guy on second type of plays.

  28. tom

    July 23, 2008 at 2:44 pm

    Holy Schnikies, 18 pitches through 2!! Gettin’ better all the time!

  29. tom

    July 23, 2008 at 2:44 pm

    Thanks, Ken. Bet that was fun to see.

  30. tom

    July 23, 2008 at 2:46 pm

    thanks also to Coleman and Andrew

  31. T Smith

    July 23, 2008 at 2:48 pm

    Is this the same team I’ve watched all year?

  32. mcb.

    July 23, 2008 at 2:49 pm

    We were all thinking the same thing during the pause. As in, um, yeah, why doesn’t he? Although I am kind of in the “give Ramon a chance” camp.

  33. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 3:07 pm

    “Grudzielanek”

    Ryan in Brooklyn – If that’s not correct, it ought to be.

  34. Pat in Carolina

    July 23, 2008 at 3:10 pm

    Is there any reason, stat-supported or otherwise, that has Thames sitting two games in a row?

  35. Joel in Seattle

    July 23, 2008 at 3:11 pm

    “Is this the same team I’ve watched all year?”

    Which team are you referring to?

  36. Joel in Seattle

    July 23, 2008 at 3:13 pm

    Pat:

    I’d imagine Leyland likes Joyce’s LH bat against a righty starter. He’s certainly been productive enough to justify being in the lineup.

    So it’s between Sheff and Thames, and, well you know all about Leyland and Sheff.

  37. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 3:14 pm

    “Which team are you referring to?”

    Ha. Good one. Could apply to either, though.

    Pat in Carolina – Joyce hit Greinke very well back in May. Thames didn’t.

  38. Pat in Carolina

    July 23, 2008 at 3:18 pm

    Thanks Sean, I was figuring there were some Greinke stats out there. Although between his 20+ platoon homeruns in ’06 and inconsistent time this year, he can’t do much more to earn some full time status.

  39. Ryan

    July 23, 2008 at 3:23 pm

    The Royals really do look like the Tigers two months ago. The starter doesn’t look bad, but the opponent has blooped its way to five runs. And of course the lineup is making the opposing pitcher look like Cy (fill in last name). I officially nominate Billy Butler as the chubby malingerer who is worthless and will be out of baseball by the all-star break.

  40. Ryan

    July 23, 2008 at 3:25 pm

    Wait! Does this mean our light-hitting shortstop can pitch too? Renteria for bullpen!

  41. Joel in Seattle

    July 23, 2008 at 3:25 pm

    Ew. That’s an ugly 1/2 inning on gameday.

  42. The Jinx

    July 23, 2008 at 3:31 pm

    No Hitter!!!

  43. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 3:31 pm

    Pat – Oh yeah, I’m all over Marcus to start in LF, have been for a long time. Joyce is starting to complicate things for me. Hate that guy.

  44. West Coast Tiger

    July 23, 2008 at 3:31 pm

    G man is on fire. watching this on gameday at the office, wish I was home

  45. Joel in Seattle

    July 23, 2008 at 3:32 pm

    So according to Gameday, the Royals weren’t allowed to hit in the 5th inning. I have no problem with that, but I wanted to confirm that’s accurate.

  46. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 3:33 pm

    “chubby malingerer who is worthless and will be out of baseball by the all-star break”

    Excellent. Every team has one.

  47. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 3:34 pm

    “So according to Gameday, the Royals weren’t allowed to hit in the 5th inning.”

    OK, stop it. You guys are killing me already.

  48. tiff

    July 23, 2008 at 3:35 pm

    Galarraga 37 strikes 17 balls.
    Do you think he’s taking those comments by Leyland personally, about still getting over the hump?

  49. Joel in Seattle

    July 23, 2008 at 3:37 pm

    I’m serious, Sean. Apparently, Gameday found the Royals’ performance so abhorrent, it has been stricken from the record.

    Or perhaps Galarraga’s performance has been so heavenly, the baseball gods have taken that inning up to live with them.

    UPDATE: Oops, there it is. Though now Joyce’s AB at the top of the 6th is AWOL. Gameday does weird things on my work computer…

  50. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 3:37 pm

    tiff, I think he’s just continuing what started in Baltimore. Despite the fact that some of those strikes went out of the park, it was an impressive start for throwing them and showing that confidence in his stuff that Leyland’s been talking about.

  51. T Smith

    July 23, 2008 at 3:38 pm

    “Which team are you referring to?”

    Er, I was referring to the Tigers — but forget about that for a minute, the real question is, is this the same pitcher I watched the entire game?

    Talk about bi-polar…

  52. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 3:40 pm

    Joel, I know you were serious, but it was hilarious anyway – the best part being “I have no problem with that…”

  53. Anson

    July 23, 2008 at 3:40 pm

    Sweet the Chisox and Twinkies are losing.

  54. Tbone

    July 23, 2008 at 3:40 pm

    Scoreboard watching:

    Yanks beat the Twins 5-1
    Texas leads ChiSox 5-3 in the 5th…

  55. Ryan In Brooklyn

    July 23, 2008 at 3:42 pm

    Armando Galarraga anagram:

    A glad manag(e)r roar.

    (ever since yesterday’s Evil Eskim(o), I’m obsessed with these. I’m worried that it’s reminiscent of Harry Caray’s penchant for attempting to pronounce player’s names in reverse).

  56. Ken in Las Vegas (formerly Cincinnati)

    July 23, 2008 at 3:42 pm

    I don’t want to jinx anyone by mentioning the unmentionable, but I feel myself becoming increasingly excited by that thing by which the opposing team hits less than 1 hit in 9 innings of play as conducted by one pitcher.

  57. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 3:43 pm

    I’m down with the anagrams, keep it up. Very funny end to the Game 99 thread with them.

  58. Tbone

    July 23, 2008 at 3:44 pm

    Aramando appears to be pitching fairly well. That’s 4 straight QS for the starters.

  59. ez

    July 23, 2008 at 3:44 pm

    It might be time to start playing hookie…. there is history in the making…

  60. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 3:45 pm

    Fortunately, we have no idea what you’re talking about, Ken. But of course we’re also excited about nothing for no apparent reason.

  61. Anson

    July 23, 2008 at 3:45 pm

    Less then 1 hit? I’m excited about the less than 1 baserunner possibility.

  62. Joel in Seattle

    July 23, 2008 at 3:45 pm

    Is Gameday accurate on this account – the Royals have hit a grand total of two balls to the outfield?

  63. Chris in Dallas

    July 23, 2008 at 3:46 pm

    Wow. I just checked in on the game for the first time in a while. I see no one is talking to Armando Galarraga in the dugout right now…

  64. T Smith

    July 23, 2008 at 3:46 pm

    Let’s discuss something else… at least until the eight inning

  65. scotsw

    July 23, 2008 at 3:46 pm

    I think it is now appropriate to pick up the phone and suggest to your friends that they watch the Royals game today.

  66. ez

    July 23, 2008 at 3:47 pm

    LOL… I was JUST phoning when I read that!!

  67. tiff

    July 23, 2008 at 3:48 pm

    I was right about the Granderson triple! He just hit it a day late, to spite me.

  68. Joel in Seattle

    July 23, 2008 at 3:48 pm

    Speaking of anagrams, I think what Ken was referring to is alternatively known as “The Nitro.”

    Feel free to adopt that as your jinx-safe euphemism for this game.

  69. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 3:48 pm

    “Let’s discuss something else… at least until the eight inning”

    Capital idea. How about some play by play, someone, just to keep us occupied and distracted?

  70. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 3:49 pm

    I don’t know about the 5th inning, but here is how gameday describes the odd run the Tigers scored in the 1st:

    - M. Cabrera struck out swinging, P. Polanco caught stealing, M. Ordonez out at second

    -um, yeah. sounds more like a triple-play to me…

  71. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 3:50 pm

    “LOL… I was JUST phoning when I read that!!”

    My phone rang as I read that. And it was scotsw. How did he get my number?

  72. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 3:53 pm

    Good idea from Sean C, in fact I would add it’s an odd superstition when you’re watching at home; I mean even if you believe in jinxing, it seems the guy would have to hear you or be in your vicinity or something.

    And virtual talking, even more removed, right? Oh no, quite the oppposite. A certain player could be sitting in his dugout while his team bats, reading, say, a blog–such as this one–perhaps on his iPhone even, and then he reads a certain thing and…well, that’s actual jinx territory pal.
    So take all precautions…

  73. Kevin in Austin

    July 23, 2008 at 3:54 pm

    Is anyone else having trouble with the MLB.tv feed? I’m not getting a picture, just sound.

  74. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 3:55 pm

    At any rate, another blowout at hand. I mean, once we add on Sean’s 5 home runs that’s 10 runs minimum…

  75. ez

    July 23, 2008 at 3:58 pm

    You are using the wrong words for the anagram… As I understand it, the game is :

    Fat Creme Peg

    or

    Cap Ref Get Em

    If you see what I’m sayin…

  76. Tbone

    July 23, 2008 at 3:59 pm

    6-4 Rangers over White Sox in the 6th…

  77. Ken in Las Vegas (formerly Cincinnati)

    July 23, 2008 at 3:59 pm

    Yes, let’s talk about something else for awhile to avoid the jinx. How about video games. Have any of you played Grand Theft Auto IV yet? Truly an amazing piece of work. All positive reviews. Literally no hits on it that I can think of. I would go as far as calling it a perfect game.

  78. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 3:59 pm

    And I do want those home runs. I haven’t abandoned hope.

  79. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 3:59 pm

    “Is anyone else having trouble with the MLB.tv feed? I’m not getting a picture, just sound.” That beats the inevitable blackout notice I get for all games in Kansas City. Why, I haven’t a clue.

  80. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 4:00 pm

    “6-4 Rangers over White Sox in the 6th…”

    uh oh, tbone is gonna jinx the Rangers now…

  81. Amanda

    July 23, 2008 at 4:01 pm

    Or how about movies. Anyone seen “The Dark Knight” yet? Going tomorrow….

  82. mcb.

    July 23, 2008 at 4:01 pm

    Awww… boo.

  83. tiff

    July 23, 2008 at 4:01 pm

    eh…it’s over. Still excellent.

  84. Pat in Carolina

    July 23, 2008 at 4:02 pm

    devastating.

  85. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 4:02 pm

    Of course gameday is jinxing in all caps every inning….

  86. Ryan In Brooklyn

    July 23, 2008 at 4:02 pm

    There it goes – DeJesus with a base hit.

  87. T Smith

    July 23, 2008 at 4:02 pm

    That sucks.

  88. ez

    July 23, 2008 at 4:02 pm

    Ken, that was too close!!!

    May you get hard 16′s for a month!

    May 7-2 off suit be your hole cards for your next tournament ….

    May you be forced to eat at the buffet at the Stratosphere for a month!

  89. mcb.

    July 23, 2008 at 4:03 pm

    one-hitter would still be cool.

    oops.

  90. Joel in Seattle

    July 23, 2008 at 4:03 pm

    ez:

    I get ya. I prefer “Mega Prefect,” or “Face Get Perm.”

  91. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 4:03 pm

    Bastards at gameday are the responsible jinxers I believe.

    If it had to happen, it’s some consolation at least that Jesus did it.

  92. Joel in Seattle

    July 23, 2008 at 4:04 pm

    Wait, the Royals have another position player whose name starts with G? Good heavens.

  93. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 4:04 pm

    And haha Mr. Hitting Streak, looks like you’re probably done for the day…

  94. mcb.

    July 23, 2008 at 4:08 pm

    Can’t the Royals think of a better song than “Venga Bus” when scoring and breaking up a no-hitter?

  95. Chris in Dallas

    July 23, 2008 at 4:08 pm

    No shutout either? Something tells me this game is going to give me the piss shivers before it’s all said and done.

  96. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 4:10 pm

    That’s how far they’ve fallen, to the ‘G’s.

    It’s a long way down from the ‘B’ teams of Brett, Black, Biancalana, Balboni–OK, forget the Balboni, Gubicza.

    Hey wait a second, GUBICZA? He was from the FUTURE wasn’t he!?”

  97. Mark in Chicago

    July 23, 2008 at 4:11 pm

    This game is precariously close to becoming interesting…

  98. Ken in Las Vegas (formerly Cincinnati)

    July 23, 2008 at 4:11 pm

    ez: I’m not sure what you’re talking about. I just suggest you try the game. BTW, your curses were already laid on me some time ago. Hopefully you have undone them with a double negative because I’m really tiring of the Stratosphere’s food.

  99. Tbone

    July 23, 2008 at 4:12 pm

    Standing O for Armando!

  100. Joel in Seattle

    July 23, 2008 at 4:12 pm

    No, no, no Coleman. You NEVER forget Balboni.

    And Gubicza is the past, present and future.

  101. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 4:12 pm

    Thank Gload that’s over with

  102. Mark in Chicago

    July 23, 2008 at 4:13 pm

    ok, phew. for a second there, I was envisioning Todd Jones being needed in this game in the 9th inning. it didn’t turn out good.

    Rangers over White Sox 6-4, top 7

  103. Mark in Chicago

    July 23, 2008 at 4:15 pm

    What a second – Ken, when did they change the name of Cincinnati to Las Vegas? There’s TWO Las Vegas’ now? How is that not confusing?

  104. Walt @ UMN

    July 23, 2008 at 4:16 pm

    I had a free minute at work and decided to check out the score on gameday. I saw the no no after 5 and have been sitting on butt since. I guess two in two years is too much to ask for. Great performance regardless.

    Amanda: Saw it. Excellent.

  105. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 4:16 pm

    I’m just saying it’s pretty obvious to me they’ll eventually figure out Gubicza, Greinke, Grudzielanek,–they’re all from the same planet. I know, big surprise, right. But you’d be surprised how many people don’t connect the dots on that one…

  106. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 4:17 pm

    “What a second – Ken, when did they change the name of Cincinnati to Las Vegas? There’s TWO Las Vegas’ now? How is that not confusing?”

    It’s not that confusing, it’s like New York, one is the city and one is the state

  107. Chris in Dallas

    July 23, 2008 at 4:20 pm

    OK Battlestar wiggled his way out of that one. By the way, Battlestar Galarraga anagrams into ‘A Garbage All Star Tart’. Discuss.

  108. Joel in Seattle

    July 23, 2008 at 4:20 pm

    Cincy saw what borrowing a name did for Paris, Texas. They decided it was worth a shot.

  109. Mark in Chicago

    July 23, 2008 at 4:20 pm

    So Las Vegas the city is now Las Vegas the state? I can only assume that’s what happened, unless Cincinnati the city is now Las Vegas the state.

    Rangers up, 8-4 and still batting in the 7th

  110. Brian in Tampa

    July 23, 2008 at 4:21 pm

    Rangers up 8-4!!!

  111. Joel in Seattle

    July 23, 2008 at 4:23 pm

    Mark:

    Have you identified any other place in Nevada?

  112. Mark in Chicago

    July 23, 2008 at 4:24 pm

    What’s ‘Nevada’?

  113. Brian in Tampa

    July 23, 2008 at 4:24 pm

    I want to see an ephus pitch.

  114. Chris in Dallas

    July 23, 2008 at 4:29 pm

    I’m pretty sure there’s a place called Reno, Nevada. I heard of that one on this gritty, realistic police drama I saw on TV the other night. At least the one officer was wearing some gritty, realistic haute pants.

  115. mcb.

    July 23, 2008 at 4:30 pm

    I do love it when batters fall on their backsides after whiffing on the third strike to end the inning.

    (Only if they’re on the other team though).

  116. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 4:31 pm

    OK, Casey, good job. Please go back to Toledo or DFAland or wherever now.

  117. Chris in Dallas

    July 23, 2008 at 4:31 pm

    I’ll admit it – when I see the name ‘Fossum’ associated with a Tigers game, my eyes start spurting copious amounts of blood.

  118. Tbone

    July 23, 2008 at 4:31 pm

    Casey Fossum apparently should be used strictly against right handed batters.

  119. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 4:33 pm

    “A Garbage All Star Tart’.”

    I dated her for a while. She was fun, I’ll say that much.

  120. tiff

    July 23, 2008 at 4:34 pm

    when you see Fossum, you don’t immediately think possum?

  121. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 4:37 pm

    “you don’t immediately think possum?”

    Especially when they hit those screaming line drives back through the box forcing him to drop, and he lays there on his back hoping nobody will notice him…

  122. Ken in Las Vegas (formerly Cincinnati)

    July 23, 2008 at 4:37 pm

    Now you’ve all really confused my SpongeBob brain. Did I move to Las Vegas or did they just change the name to Las Vegas? Cincinnati seems much hotter than I remember. The plush lawns have turned into plush rock beds. They have replaced Great American Ballpark with a pyramid and replaced the homeless people with homeless people who pass out prostitution calling cards. That 30 hour drive must have actually been a 30 minute drive to White Castle and I was just so drunk that I confused the two. Weird.

  123. Chris in Dallas

    July 23, 2008 at 4:42 pm

    I always have trouble spelling Cincinnati. Ken – can you get the Tigers game on WKRP? Hey-oh.

  124. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 4:44 pm

    Sheffield. How the mighty have fallen. Popout to 3B, what a surprise. If the Tigers lose 8-7, I pin it on him.

  125. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 4:46 pm

    Speaking of WKRP, Loni Anderson and Pam Anderson are sisters right? Or some sort of twins, I think, I’m pretty sure I’ve heard twin-something about them…

  126. Chris in Dallas

    July 23, 2008 at 4:48 pm

    Well, they’re both ditzy blondes. I don’t think Loni Anderson has a sex tape out there though.

  127. Tbone

    July 23, 2008 at 4:48 pm

    TJ in with a 6-run lead. That should be just enough I think.

  128. Ryan In Brooklyn

    July 23, 2008 at 4:49 pm

    Todd Jones:

    No Odd Jest

  129. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 4:49 pm

    Jones HBP guarantees no hits. Maybe no BB, too.

  130. Chris in Dallas

    July 23, 2008 at 4:50 pm

    Looks like the mothereffing Rangers bullpen is fast losing their lead on the ChiSox. I’m sure Hawk Harrelson is currently sporting wood.

  131. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 4:51 pm

    well, sure they are, after all the rampant jinxing….

  132. mcb.

    July 23, 2008 at 4:52 pm

    Sweep! (Only now do I feel safe saying that.)

  133. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 4:52 pm

    Yeah, I’m onto Jones and his little strategies. I like this one the best.

  134. Tbone

    July 23, 2008 at 4:52 pm

    That series right there was an old-fashioned butt whoopin’. Bring on the Sox!

  135. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 4:53 pm

    Sean C: of course that HBP was predictable, since that happens at a much higher rate when Inge is catching. (I know, small sample size and all, but humor me at least until it evens back out…)

  136. tiff

    July 23, 2008 at 4:53 pm

    that’s why you can’t rely on any team from Texas to do your dirty work.

    Great win, great pitching, and runs! Runs!

    I’m geared up for this weekend.

  137. Brian in Tampa

    July 23, 2008 at 4:53 pm

    Alright nice 3 game sweep on the road. Let’s only hope this pitching and offense carries over to the weekend series.

  138. Mike in CT

    July 23, 2008 at 4:54 pm

    let’s hope the off day doesn’t cool off the bats…

  139. Amanda

    July 23, 2008 at 4:54 pm

    Nice Sweep! Hope they do as well against the Sox :|

  140. Chris in Dallas

    July 23, 2008 at 4:56 pm

    4.5 games out? That seems fairly doable.

  141. Mark in Chicago

    July 23, 2008 at 4:58 pm

    White Sox just scored 5 in the 8th and lead Texas 10-8.

  142. T Smith

    July 23, 2008 at 4:58 pm

    Carlos Quentin 3 run hr in bottom of eighth. 10-8 Sox.

  143. Chris

    July 23, 2008 at 4:58 pm

    Damn Ranger pitching

  144. Tbone

    July 23, 2008 at 4:59 pm

    Not so fast. Quentin 3-run jack gives ChiSox the lead in the 8th!

  145. Kevin in Austin

    July 23, 2008 at 4:59 pm

    CJ Wilson (aka “The Opener”) just gave up a 3 run jack to Carlos Quentin, Bad Guys up 10-8. The great Eric Nadel, Rangers play by play guy, said it best – “Boy, did he annihilate that ball.”

  146. jim-mt

    July 23, 2008 at 4:59 pm

    Todd could have made that more exciting.

    I like all this optimism-almost had to quit looking at this a few days ago.

  147. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 5:06 pm

    OK I’ll go optimistic–Rangers losing is fine too, I think they are tied with us in the wild card standings, so we just gained a game on them.

  148. Joel in Seattle

    July 23, 2008 at 5:06 pm

    If you must put runners on, Todd, that’s the way to do it. Make ‘em pay for it.

  149. Mark in Chicago

    July 23, 2008 at 5:11 pm

    Projected pitching matchups against the Sox:

    Robertson vs. Floyd
    Verlander vs. Danks
    Miner vs. Vazquez

    Floyd owns us, somehow, but has not been pitching well of late. His peripherals indicate he is the luckiest pitcher on the planet. Who knows what we’ll get with Nate.

    Danks is pretty legit good, so Verlander will have to stay sharp. I like that we’re going against a lefty, though.

    Vazquez has reverted to inconsistent Javy in his last few starts, no idea what to expect from Miner.

    I’d be happy taking 2 of 3.

  150. Kevin in Austin

    July 23, 2008 at 5:14 pm

    Bummer is I think 2/3 this weekend is doable, but that still puts us 4.5 games out. That said, as long as we are within 5 come Aug 1, we’ll be in a bona fide race (unless you are the Minn Twins chasing the ’06 Tigers, then 10 games out = bona fide race).

    Someone posted a few days ago how fortunate we are in light of the last 15 years, and even though we had WS expectations, I’ll take meaningful games in August & September any day.

  151. Chris in Dallas

    July 23, 2008 at 5:16 pm

    CJ Wilson makes me crap blood. I hate that guy.

  152. Chris in Dallas

    July 23, 2008 at 5:17 pm

    I kind of like the Tigs chances to solve Floyd right now. Most everyone in the lineup seems to be swinging pretty well at the moment. If he’s not careful, Gil could be a .300 hitter real soon.

  153. Joel in Seattle

    July 23, 2008 at 5:19 pm

    2 out of 3 is unacceptable*. No one else seems to be able to drive a stake through the Sox’ overachieving black hearts. The Tigers will have to do it all by themselves.

    3 game sweep = 2 games behind, 6 games over .500.

    UPDATE: By “unacceptable,” I mean “perfectly acceptable, but not what I want.”

  154. Mark in Chicago

    July 23, 2008 at 5:26 pm

    Tigers have 9 games head-to-head against the Sox. They go 6-3 in those games and that makes up 3 of the 5.5 they are behind. The Sox have a much tougher schedule, including 7 against Boston, 4 against the Yankees, and a trip out west to Oakland where they always struggle. Friday’s series in Detroit starts a 10-game trip that includes Minny and KC.

    If the boys keep playing well and win against the Sox, they can pull it off. I am convinced the Sox will give them an opening, they just aren’t that good. It’s up to the Tigers to take advantage of it.

    P.S.
    Pitch around Quentin, it’s prolly best that way.

  155. Chris in Dallas

    July 23, 2008 at 5:36 pm

    “P.S.
    Pitch around Quentin, it’s prolly best that way.”

    If by ‘pitch around’, you mean ‘drill him in the earhole in his first AB’, then I wholeheartedly concur. Seriously, though, this is an absolute must-win series. 2 out of 3 is fine. A sweep would be as awesome as chocolate covered pizza. Any thing less, not so much.

  156. Chris in Dallas

    July 23, 2008 at 5:39 pm

    Also, I’ve figured out the Tigers key to success this afternoon. The Royals were wearing their Nancy-boy powder blue shirts. Tigers = hefty, hefty, hefty Royals = wimpy, wimpy, wimpy.

  157. Adam

    July 23, 2008 at 5:55 pm

    Galarraga V. Jurrjens:

  158. Adam

    July 23, 2008 at 6:01 pm

    Galarraga V. Jurrjens:

    3.27ERA – 3.22 ERA
    107.1 IP – 117.1 IP
    8W 4L – 9W 5L
    84Hits – 113 Hits
    39 ER – 42 ER
    38 BB – 42 BB
    75 SO – 86 SO
    1.16 WHIP – 1.32 WHIP
    .369 SLG – .383 SLG
    .287 OBA – .317 OBA

    Jurrjens has a better GO/AO ratio at 1.58 to Galarraga’s 1.14…but I’d say at this point they’re pretty comparable.

  159. Adam

    July 23, 2008 at 6:02 pm

    We could be as close as 2.5 back by the end of the weekend…and as far as 8.5 back.

    Pivotal series.

  160. Coleman

    July 23, 2008 at 6:55 pm

    “Tigers = hefty hefty hefty”

    I’ll say “Who Is On First?” Alex…

    ding ding ding

  161. Mike R

    July 23, 2008 at 7:00 pm

    I hate that there’s an off day tomorrow. I want this White Sox to start like … tonight. I can’t wait.

  162. Mike R

    July 23, 2008 at 7:05 pm

    Adam, I’ll go with this (which is what i always look at first when looking at pitchers) in the Jurrjens vs. Galarraga query:

    Galarraga:
    450 Batters Faced
    44% GB rate, 16.7% K Rate, 8.4% BB Rate

    Jurrjens:
    502 Batters faced
    50% GB Rate, 17.1% K Rate, 8.4% BB Rate

    So, I’d give the slightest of edges to Jurrjens.

  163. Joel in Seattle

    July 23, 2008 at 7:20 pm

    Mike:

    I think Jar-Jar’s slight edge would be negated, and possibly reversed, if he were pitching in the AL.

  164. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 7:28 pm

    Timely stats, Adam.

  165. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 7:31 pm

    Mike

    I like the way you look at pitchers. Makes sense. But here’s another stat:

    Galarraga – AL

    Jurrjens – NL

  166. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 23, 2008 at 7:33 pm

    Joel, please stop stealing my posts 11 minutes before I submit them.

  167. Joey C.

    July 23, 2008 at 8:04 pm

    The KC series made our run differential suddenly look like one belonging to a contender. We were +27 for the series.

  168. Adam

    July 23, 2008 at 8:35 pm

    Mike, he’s also given up 30 more hits (and faced 50 more batters) in only 10 more innings.

    I’ll give the slightest of edges to Galarraga.

  169. Mike R

    July 23, 2008 at 8:44 pm

    Sean and Joel: While I understand your point, I’m not AS BIG on the AL/NL splits. What’d be ideal is to take out the times Jurrjens has faced a pitcher and see what his numbers are then, but I’m far too lazy to even want to do that.

    Adam: Are those hits his fault or could they have been prevented by better fielding? In my opinion, he can directly control 2 things (K’s and BB’s) and his movement of his pitches/his arsenal results in GB%. Those are the three things I first look at. So, I’m not overly worried about the amount of hits Jurrjen’s has given up relative to Galarraga and Armando’s probably got a good bit of luck thus far on his side.

  170. The Jinx

    July 23, 2008 at 9:21 pm

    4 hitter!!!

  171. Chief Monday

    July 24, 2008 at 12:15 am

    The Tigers swept as predicted. Galarraga is the hero once again. The Tigers are rolling now.

    The White Sox pitching was miserable again. They’ve given up 80 runs in the past 12 games. In 10 of the 12 games they’ve given up 5 runs or more. In the 2 games they didn’t give up 5 or more, Mark Buehrle was pitching.

  172. Chief Monday

    July 24, 2008 at 12:37 am

    The Tigers have a little over 2 months left to pick the White Sox apart.

    I still predict that by the end of September, we’ll be 10 games in front them.

    The Twins I just don’t get. I don’t think they’re much better than our 2nd string players.

    Just think of a line-up of – Rayburn, Thomas, Joyce, Larrish, Clevlen, Hollimon, Santiago, Inge, Sardini. Well that’s about what the Twins lineup looks like, just a few different names and Morneau/Mauer.

  173. Chris

    July 24, 2008 at 12:43 am

    Chief Monday, can you be a little more optimistic about the Tigers?

  174. tiff

    July 24, 2008 at 8:58 am

    one ticket on the Chief Monday wagon, please!

  175. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 9:12 am

    Against non-pitcher batters:

    Galarraga 449 BF, 16.7% K, 8.6% BB, .287/.370/.680 OPS, .230 BABIP

    Jurrjens 465 BF, 15.7% K, 9.0% BB, .334/.408/.742 OPS, .304 BABIP

    Pitchers batting included (and probably otherwise), Jurrjens has the edge as a groundball pitcher. A few random stats:

    GROUNDBALLS

    Galarraga 41%
    Jurrjens 49%

    NON-BUNT IN-PLAY GROUNDBALL OUT %

    Galarraga 46.3%
    Jurrjens 58.7%

    GROUNDBALL BABIP

    Galarraga .182
    Jurrjens .181

  176. scotsw

    July 24, 2008 at 9:12 am

    I nominate this for the Funniest Game Thread award. Until you eggheads started comparing Armando and Jair (two great first names, BTW), it was really funny. The stats were interesting. But not funny.

  177. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 10:37 am

    Yeah, funny stuff, but that’s not so unusual. If Ken in Las Nati could cut out the compulsive gambling and get his life together, he might have a future as a humor columnist or comedy writer.

    Here’s a funny stat for silly eggheads: Armando Galrraga (the batter) has a better OPS+ than both Jair Jurrjens and Edgar Renteria. Combined. Haven’t checked on Gorkys yet.

    Someone referred to Galarraga as “G-Man.” That’s actually the best nickname I’ve heard so far. His demeanor fits with The Untouchables, I think. They could play that theme music every time he took the mound. That could really get on the other team’s nerves after a while.

  178. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 11:00 am

    The trouble with Chief Monday’s relentless optimism is that it provokes mild pessimists like me to extremes.

    DAILY PESSIMISM FOR JULY 24, 2008

    Look back at the Tigers’ 10th loss to the Twins. Mark it well. Do not be surprised when it turns out to be the game that cost the Tigers the division and therefore the playoffs, possibly the World Series.

  179. Chief Monday

    July 24, 2008 at 11:05 am

    When Galarraga lost the perfect game, it was the 1st time I ever saw him smile while he was pitching. He usually has a mean look on his face, like he’s about to assault somebody.

  180. Chief Monday

    July 24, 2008 at 11:14 am

    One thing about Galarraga, it seems like he gets ahead of the count on almost every hitter. He makes the batter hit bad pitches into easy pop flyouts and easy groundouts. Rarely do hitters get good wood on anything he throws. The only time he really got hammered was when it was raining and he gave up 3 homers.

  181. Eric Cioe

    July 24, 2008 at 11:37 am

    He got hammered in Baltimore when he gave up 3 HR and in Detroit against St. Louis when he gave up 3 HR and in Detroit against Boston when he gave up 2 HR.

  182. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 11:45 am

    For Coleman:

    Jones 4 HBP – 2 with Rodriguez at C, 2 with Inge. OPS of batters hit: .624, .693, .744, .936. Always even or ahead in the count when it happens (first pitch, 0-1, 1-2, 2-2). Only hits teams west of the Mississippi while on the road. Bases always empty (2 with 0 outs, 1 with 1 out, 1 with 2 out). Tigers are 4-0 when Jones does a HBP.

  183. Chief Monday

    July 24, 2008 at 11:54 am

    I have reason to be so optimistic. In the past 40 games, since June 7th, the Tigers have been the best team in the majors. We have the most wins, the most runs scored, and our pitching has been fairly decent.

    Here’s how all the teams rank since June 7th-

    TM_ W L RS_ RA_ +/-
    DET 27 13 221 164 57
    NYY 25 14 189 130 59
    MIN 24 15 204 168 36
    LAA 23 15 181 160 21
    CHW 22 17 217 192 25
    TB_ 22 16 174 157 17
    TX_ 21 17 202 223 -21
    KC_ 21 19 194 214 -20
    BOS 21 17 185 143 42
    OAK 19 20 150 133 17
    BAL 17 21 218 214 4
    TOR 17 19 160 162 -2
    SEA 16 23 143 153 -10
    CLE 16 22 188 188 0

    MIL 26 13 202 163 39
    NYM 24 16 209 177 32
    COL 21 20 212 207 5
    CHC 20 18 181 164 17
    STL 20 19 186 188 -2
    FLO 20 20 184 209 -25
    CIN 20 20 170 199 -29
    LAD 19 20 154 163 -9
    PIT 18 21 196 243 -47
    PHI 16 21 165 164 1
    ARI 16 23 153 185 -32
    ATL 16 22 154 172 -18
    SF_ 15 23 151 186 -35
    HOU 14 24 148 197 -49
    WAS 13 25 156 186 -30
    SD_ 11 27 154 197 -43

    The Tigers worst enemy is themselves. We have so many great players, that there isn’t enough pressure on any single player to perform.

  184. Chris in Dallas

    July 24, 2008 at 12:02 pm

    Can I weigh in on Battlestar? First of all, he’s obviously been a complete steal of a pickup, even if he never pitches another inning. I’ve been waiting for the other shoe to drop as far has his seemingly good luck goes, but it hasn’t happened. So he’s got that going for him. Would I rather have him than Jurrjens? Ideally I’d want both. Depth and all. Comparatively, they’re really pretty similar (unless you want to count the fact that JJ pitches in the sissy league). Jurrjens probably has a tick more value due to the fact he’s significantly younger though. JJ strikes out a couple more guys, BG walks a couple fewer. ERA’s are almost identical. JJ has been keeping the ball in the park better (caveat: the NL sucks), though he’s been hit harder if you look at his LD% (22.3). Anyway, I think JJ probably has a brighter future over the long haul, but in 2008 it’s pretty much a wash.

  185. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 12:04 pm

    Galarraga has allowed 5 or more runs in 4 of 17 starts, and 5 is the most he’s allowed. Verlander, surely next best in this regard, has allowed 5+ in 5 of 20 starts. Armando has allowed HR in 7 of 17 starts, Justin in 11 of 20 starts (but never more than one) Galarraga’s worst starts are the “best worst” of anyone in the rotation. When he gets hammered, it’s been milder for reasons that are not all luck. He seems good at pulling himself back together and not letting things go completely to hell. Not saying he’s Verlander or anyone but himself, but he’s no fluke. Not this season, anyway.

    I seem to have become the designated G-Man booster. How did that happen?

  186. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 12:08 pm

    “I have reason to be so optimistic.”

    Sure, we all do.

    DAILY OPTIMISM FOR JULY 24, 2008

    World Series 2008, Game 1: C.C Sabbathia vs. Justin Verlander at Comerica Park.

  187. Chris in Dallas

    July 24, 2008 at 12:27 pm

    Sean, the way you spelled CC’s last name made me think of Black Sabbath. I will now refer to him as War Pig.

  188. Ken in Las Vegas (formerly Cincinnati)

    July 24, 2008 at 12:41 pm

    Interesting, Chris. The first thing I thought of was C & C Music Factory. Evveerryybody dance now, dun…dundun….dun dun…

  189. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 12:42 pm

    What will become of Freddy “Not Ready For Prime Time” Solid now? Back to long/middle relief? I know I keep asking, but why is Casey Fossum still on the team (please bring one good stat to pass around)? Why do I have recent bad impressions about Bobby Seay when he’s been so good his last 11 appearances? And it’s strange, but Aquilino Lopez hasn’t been very good at all, on the whole, after April: 1.70 WHIP, 5.09 ERA. I thought he was better. I really wanted to see him as a starter, and wonder if there’s still any chance of that.

  190. Chris in Dallas

    July 24, 2008 at 12:49 pm

    Freddy Solid will be OK. He’s still learning and hadn’t pitched above AA before this year. He’s got a live arm. Although I have inadvertently brainwashed myself, as every time I go to peruse his stats, I type in Freddy Solid. It turns out there’s no such player. I’ll pass along a nice stat about Casey Fossum. He and his wife Kim have a daughter, Ava, and a son, Aidan. They also live in nearby Frisco, TX. I personally think he should have named his son BABiP, or perhaps FIP but that’s just me.

  191. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 12:53 pm

    Did I spell it wrong? I though it looked wrong, but I would not stoop to looking it up, proud man that I am. Ha! War Pig. Good name for him.

    Everybody Dance Now, there’a blast from the past. One night in a club left that song permanently tattoed on my brain. Songs that I mocked when they were current inevitably become nostalgia material for me later on.

  192. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 12:54 pm

    “They also live in nearby Frisco, TX”

    Nice area.

  193. Dave T.

    July 24, 2008 at 1:02 pm

    Is Galarraga’s nickname now battlestar galarraga?

    I remember a radio sports call in show a couple of years ago with a discussion on good first baseman. The caller got tounge tied when he tried to bring up the big cat, and he called him…

    Ga-Ga-Raga

    So now everytime I hear his name I think of that.

    The tigers have to go with a 3 man rotation in the playoffs of Verlander Rogers and Galarraga maybe you throw in Nate, but I am not sure.

    Now for the next argument, Miner is the real deal!

  194. billfer

    July 24, 2008 at 1:03 pm

    but why is Casey Fossum still on the team (please bring one good stat to pass around)

    Over his last 7 appearances he has a 1.93 ERA. That includes 3.1 and 4.1 inning outings. Over those 7 games he has 14 innings, 11 K’s, 4 walks, and has stranded 8 of the 10 runners he inherited.

  195. tiff

    July 24, 2008 at 1:05 pm

    Freddy Solid has tired arm right now, hoping he’ll be back Friday.

  196. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 1:14 pm

    Looked at the one game where Nate faced the Sox this season, in Detroit as it turns out. Talk about a typical Good Nate game. Dolsi bailed him out of big trouble in the 7th, coulda been worse.

  197. Chris in Dallas

    July 24, 2008 at 1:17 pm

    Of course billfer has to bring up actual baseball stats. Typical.

  198. Ryan P

    July 24, 2008 at 1:20 pm

    I hate off-days.

  199. Ryan P

    July 24, 2008 at 1:24 pm

    btw, according to Stark, the Tigers are shopping Sheffield. Looks like they’re comfortable with letting Marcus play every day at DH (and probably call up Clete or Larish if they actually dealt Sheffield. Not that I really think there’s a big chance).

    The Tigers continue to poke around for another starting pitcher, a left-handed bullpen arm and a young shortstop who could replace Edgar Renteria next year. One eye-popping name they’ve offered around: Gary Sheffield. Given Sheffield’s physical issues, they’d have to eat a hefty chunk of the $14 million Sheffield has coming next year to make that enticing.

  200. Chris in Dallas

    July 24, 2008 at 1:41 pm

    Yeah I’d think there’d have to be a really slim chance of them actually moving Sheffield. He’s actually starting to come around a bit if you believe his .583 slugging pct. over the last week is for real.

  201. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 1:43 pm

    ‘has stranded 8 of the 10 runners he inherited.”

    That is a good stat. As I recall, he was terrible in the beginning coming in with runners on. Quite a dramatic difference between his June and July:

    JUNE 2.16 WHIP, .967 OPS against, 12.00 ERA
    JULY 1.45 WHIP, ,752 OPS against, 2.45 ERA

    He still hasn’t allowed a HR. But 10 of 22 hits have been for extra bases. The better question is: How did he survive to pitch in July at all, and why was he or is he, and how can he ever be, a better choice than Rapada?

    Fossum. Batters don’t hit line drives off of him. Great. But who has a .360 BA and .760 OPS against on ground balls? That’s insane.

    I acknowledge that Fossum has been OK lately. Still don’t know what justifies his spot on the team.

  202. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 1:49 pm

    At this point, Gary Sheffield is too little too late, a day late and a dollar short. Eat the money and move him, Detroit.

  203. Ryan In Brooklyn

    July 24, 2008 at 1:53 pm

    Good numbers of Fossum, Bill. I guess he’s turning into what we hoped Jason Grilli would be, but never was.

  204. Joel in Seattle

    July 24, 2008 at 2:00 pm

    re: Renteria’s next year replacement, what’s the thinking on Cale Iorg? I know he’s considered pretty high-ceiling, and I know he’s on the DL right now, but what’s the general idea of when he’d be ready for a big-league audition? Is next season too early?

  205. Ryan In Brooklyn

    July 24, 2008 at 2:02 pm

    I enjoyed the Galarraga – Jurrjens comparisons earlier in this thread. For me, that puts the Renteria trade issue to rest. One way or another, Galarraga or Jurrjens is our 5th starter after Willis goes down. And those numbers would say that they’re pretty close to the same pitcher. So as far as the 2008 season, I say no harm done. Sure people will make arguments about organizational depth, etc. That’s valid. But for the 2008 season, I think we’d be in about the same position whether that trade was made or not.

  206. Ryan

    July 24, 2008 at 2:02 pm

    Seems like the obvious fit for a Sheff trade is the Rays. Gomes sucks, Sheff is from Tampa, they need ‘veteran leadership’ for their playoff push, and they have a little extra coin from their better than expected attendance. The Tigers would probably have to eat a third to a half of his remaining salary, but, if the Rays are starting to feel a little desperate, the Tigers may be able to get Reid Brignac or one of their non-David-Price near ML-ready pitching prospects (McGee, Davis, Niemann).

  207. Joel in Seattle

    July 24, 2008 at 2:03 pm

    “But who has a .360 BA and .760 OPS against on ground balls?”

    A pitcher who has Edgar Renteria and Carlos Guillen holding down one side of his infield, that’s who. With a more rangey infield, you might expect those numbers to be better.

    But maybe not.

  208. Joel in Seattle

    July 24, 2008 at 2:08 pm

    Ryan:

    Didn’t the Rays have somewhere in the neighborhood of 1 billion ML-ready (by their previous standards) OFs just last year? Are they really in need of a guy who can only play LF and DH?

  209. Mark in Chicago

    July 24, 2008 at 2:15 pm

    I’m really curious to see what DD can pull off to fill certainly one and possibly two positions next year, SS and C. Santiago probably can’t hit enough to play every day, and I don’t know if any of their middle infield prospects are ready yet.

    We have almost no catching depth in our system, so I think it’s possible that pudge may come back. Scary thought. Catching is pretty thin around the league, and I don’t know if we’d have enough to swing a deal for somebody.

    As for Sheff, I wouldn’t mind trading him IF we got somebody that can take over at short for him starting next year. Failing that, let’s hope he hits. Tampa is a great guess, Ryan.

  210. Chris in Dallas

    July 24, 2008 at 2:18 pm

    Texas would be a good trade target at C. They have somewhere in the neighborhood of 93 good catching prospects.

  211. Joel in Seattle

    July 24, 2008 at 2:32 pm

    Good thinking, Chris. I think Saltammalalalalalmmacccccccccchia would go along way to solve both our catching and “awesome names” issues. The Tigers still have some good “awesome names” depth, but the Jar-Jar and Gorkys departures left some holes.

  212. cib

    July 24, 2008 at 2:38 pm

    Was just talking to a friend who referred to one of our Tigers as “Neifi Renteria” Oy.

  213. Chris in Dallas

    July 24, 2008 at 2:49 pm

    cib: That hurts. If only because that exact phrase has entered my conciousness at various points throughout the year.

  214. Ryan In Brooklyn

    July 24, 2008 at 3:02 pm

    Anagram of the Day – Jim Leyland:

    “I’ll deny jam”

    “And I’m jelly”

  215. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 3:09 pm

    Joel

    “A pitcher who has Edgar Renteria and Carlos Guillen holding down one side of his infield”

    Two other slowball pitchers and the team split for comparison with Fossum on ground balls:

    Jones .188 BA and .375 OPS against
    Rogers .221 BA and .457 OPS against
    TEAM .241 BA and .503 OPS against
    Fossum .360 BA and .760 OPS against

  216. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 3:11 pm

    Anagrams! Or should I say, a nag rams Mars aga(i)n.

  217. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 3:13 pm

    “I guess he’s turning into what we hoped Jason Grilli would be”

    I’d rather have Grilli, Ryan (in B).

  218. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 3:19 pm

    “He’s still learning and hadn’t pitched above AA before this year” [Dolsi]

    Agree. Let’s try to be as patient with Cruceta, who’s putting together some good numbers with Toledo.

  219. tiff

    July 24, 2008 at 3:27 pm

    What’s the thinking with Mike Hollimon?

  220. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 3:28 pm

    Anagram of the Day – Jim Leyland:
    “I’ll deny jam”
    “And I’m jelly”

    You forgot one, Ryan.

    “A jelly mind.”

  221. Joel in Seattle

    July 24, 2008 at 3:29 pm

    OK Sean. Then the only conclusion is that Fossum’s defensive range from the Pitcher’s mound is just horrid.

  222. Joel in Seattle

    July 24, 2008 at 3:31 pm

    Hey, tiff… my Iorg question was first. :)

    But yeah, what’s the scoop on the organizational replacements for Rent-a-wreck? Are any of them even on the radar? Are we looking for a one-year solution until they’re ready to go?

  223. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 3:33 pm

    “What’s the thinking with Mike Hollimon?”

    I think it’s a kind of cognitive activity performed by his brain.

    (joke)

  224. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 3:41 pm

    “Then the only conclusion is that Fossum’s defensive range from the Pitcher’s mound is just horrid.”

    I suspect a tongue in cheek here, Joel.

    I haven’t seen Fossum pitch. The only (serious) conclusion I can reach from the bizarre split I cited is that batters are essentially hitting him quite hard, whacking almost-liners that happen to hit the ground before they’re out of the infield.

  225. Ryan In Brooklyn

    July 24, 2008 at 3:46 pm

    A jelly mind…indeed.

    nice work, Sean.

  226. Chris in Dallas

    July 24, 2008 at 3:55 pm

    There are literally a kajillion anagrams for Edgar Renteria. One of which is what the comments section should be renamed – ‘Tiger Nerd Area’. I will refrain from mentioning the ones that have ‘retard’ in them, though. I’m classy like that.

  227. Chris in Dallas

    July 24, 2008 at 4:02 pm

    Magglio Ordonez = Glamorized Goon, or possibly Mongoloid Gazer.

  228. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 4:03 pm

    I’m still giggling… no, chortling… maybe snickering (?) over “Go, Ass Lord.” Yeah. No class here.

  229. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 4:07 pm

    All right, this cries out for a permanent thread, right next to the Brandon Inge and Renteria trade ones.

    No, really. Both the Ordonez ones are killer. Who knew we had such fun names on our team?

  230. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 4:09 pm

    “Mongoloid Gazer”

    I’m seeing Magglio as the skygazing ape-man accosted by the monolith in the beginning 0f “2001: A Space Odyssey.”

  231. Chris in Dallas

    July 24, 2008 at 4:10 pm

    Carlos Guillen = Gorilla’s Uncle

  232. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 4:11 pm

    OK, so Carlos can be one of the extras in “2001.”

  233. Chris in Dallas

    July 24, 2008 at 4:37 pm

    Sean C. in Illinois = Aliens in Silicon. Congratualtions, Sean. Your name anagrams into what can only be surmised is the title of a space porn.

  234. Joel in Seattle

    July 24, 2008 at 4:52 pm

    Justin Verlander is “True Djinn Slaver”

  235. Joel in Seattle

    July 24, 2008 at 4:55 pm

    Or Justin could be the “Rev. Strudel Ninja.” “Ninja Turds Lever.”

  236. Kyle J

    July 24, 2008 at 5:03 pm

    “Detroit Tigers Weblog” becomes “Tigers get lit, we brood.”

    That sums up the first couple months of the season, eh?

  237. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 5:05 pm

    Joel, I’m afraid I’m going to have to use that as a character name at some point. The Rev. Strudel Ninja. Kurt Vonnegut would be proud of you.

    Aliens in Silicon. We’re missing an “e,” Chris. Instead of porn, it’s high tech. Damn. We could make it “Nils In Silicone,” the story of a Swedish transgender person (wouldn’t it be “Silicone in Nils” then?), but that’s not exactly an improvement.

  238. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 24, 2008 at 5:10 pm

    “Ninja Turds Lever.”

    Plumbing hardware for the Teenage Mutant Turtles, then. Cowabunga.

    “Tigers get lit, we brood.”

    Very apt, Kyle. Classic for the Tiger Nerd Area.

  239. Chris in Dallas

    July 24, 2008 at 5:54 pm

    LMFAO. (I think that means something with the f-word in it to convey uproarious laughter. I’m new to the lingo.) Anyway, I’m just picturing Splinter going to the Home Depot to buy new Ninja Turd Levers for the Turtles. Priceless. I certainly hope that the right Rev. Strudel Ninja can duplicate his most recent start vs. Chicago on Saturday. Didn’t he go the distance last time against them? On another note, the best anagramically named Tiger is Mike Hollimon, but I’m not going to post what it turns into since I don’t want to be accused of a hate crime. Suffice it to say it’s like a mix of Shakespeare and Ozzie Guillen…

  240. Joel in Seattle

    July 24, 2008 at 5:55 pm

    Placido Polanco is the Dungeons and Dragons hero “Loco Paladin Cop.”

    Also “Panda Colic Pool,” “Conical Lad Poop,” and “Coca Pain Dollop.”

  241. Ken in Las Vegas (formerly Cincinnati)

    July 24, 2008 at 6:56 pm

    Anagrams are the shizzzzznittttttt. I’m running to Home Depot immediately to purchase one of these turd levers. Interestingly enough, when you put “Ken in Las Vegas” into the anagram machine you get “ass king leaven”. That’s either really good or really bad.

  242. Ken in Las Vegas (formerly Cincinnati)

    July 24, 2008 at 7:00 pm

    Joel, If Conical Lad Poop were to weild the Ninja Turds Lever we could be talking about an unstoppable combination.

  243. billfer

    July 24, 2008 at 10:02 pm

    We have almost no catching depth in our system, so I think it’s possible that pudge may come back. Scary thought. Catching is pretty thin around the league, and I don’t know if we’d have enough to swing a deal for somebody.

    It’s not quite as bleak as it was last year. James Skelton has continued to come along. He won’t hit for power but could be a decent ba/obp guy. And Dusty Ryan is having a heck of a season with the bat – and he was already the top defensive catcher in the system.

  244. Mark in Chicago

    July 24, 2008 at 11:33 pm

    That’s true, billfer, I may have overstated the catching depth overall, but are either of those guys close to being every day players at the big league level? Obviously this is a team with a small (and shrinking) window to win it all. It’s pretty tough to throw a 23-year-old in there and tell him to go run the pitching staff.

    My bigger point that pudge may come back is still valid, although your point that he may want a multi-year deal is a good one.

  245. Mike R

    July 24, 2008 at 11:49 pm

    Sean: Thanks for the numbers of Jair’s numbers versus non-pitchers.

  246. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 25, 2008 at 9:26 am

    No problem, Mike. Thanks for bringing it up. The Galarraga/Jurrjens comparison makes an interesting study in its own right, aside from any relation to the Renteria trade.

  247. Mark in Chicago

    July 25, 2008 at 9:50 am

    This thread has gotten dangerously close to revisiting the Renteria trade. Please, I beg of you all, don’t do it. ;-)

  248. Sean C. in Illinois

    July 25, 2008 at 10:49 am

    Sorry, Mark. I didn’t even mean to mention the trade (which I have no problem with). Honestly, it was just interesting to compare Jurrjens and Galarraga and see how similar their numbers were.

  249. Ryan in Brooklyn

    July 25, 2008 at 2:11 pm

    Wow, I left yesterday just before the anagram blitz started. Good stuff all!