Game 102: White Sox at Tigers

PREGAME: Okay, this series is kind of a big deal. The Tigers could pick up 3 games with a sweep and be right in the middle of stuff. They could be swept and be focusing on building the best team of 2009. Or they could inch a little in either direction. It’s also the last time the Tigers get the Sox at home, so taking advantage this series would be helpful.

Tonight the Tigers need to solve the riddle of Gavin Floyd. It’s something they’ve struggled with. In Floyd’s last 5 starts against Detroit he’s allowed a total of 5 runs in 32.1 innings. The last time he carried a no hitter into the 8th inning.

Floyd is much tougher on righties, with lefties posting a .797 OPS. He also is easier to hit on the road. At home he fans 7.1 batters per nine and allows a .177 BABIP. On the road it is a 4.5 K/9 and .273 BABIP.

One thing to note with Floyd is that batters are only posting a .630 OPS on first pitches. Hopefully the Tigers make him work.

On the other side it will be Nate Robertson. Robertson was awful his last time out, and some sort of bounce back statement game would be nice.

CHW @ DET, Friday, July 25, 2008 Game Preview –

Game Time 7:05

511 thoughts on “Game 102: White Sox at Tigers”

  1. I really am a broken record on this, but Gavin Floyd has allowed more unearned runs than anyone else in baseball. The riddle is super easy to figure out – get someone to commit an error, and watch the runs pile up.

  2. I am also a broken record, Eric. Gavin Floyd is the luckiest pitcher on the planet, and that is no exaggeration. To wit:

    His BABIP overall is .225 (#2 in the league)
    His FIP is 5.10 (unreal how he’s posted a 3.52 ERA)
    His K/9 is 6.2 and BB/9 is 3.8, for a K/BB of 1.6 (all average or worse)
    And as Eric points out, he’s allowed 24 unearned runs

    Since his LD% is 16.8%, only a little below his norm, a lot of people are hitting balls right at someone. It’s going to be fun watching Gavin come crashing back to earth, and even more enjoyable listening to Hawk and DJ appear stupified by the whole thing.

    Gavin opened the Floyd-gates 2 starts ago against Texas, allowing 7 ER in 2.2 ip. Let’s hope the crash continues tonight.

    Of course, if Nate pitches like he did last time out, it prolly won’t matter.

  3. Today’s anagrams:

    Nate Robertson = Rotten On Baser

    and especially for Billfer and all you other Joe Crede haters out there (that ought to be all of us, by the way).

    Joe Crede = Co-ed Jeer (or Jeer Code)

  4. Mark-

    Thanks for reminding me that while the game will be broadcast in HD, so will Hawk’s voice…

  5. Gavin Floyd = Vino Gadfly

    I’ll try to refrain tonight, folks, but I’m at work for another 3 hours.

  6. 2 out of 3 seems just about a must with this series. But I’m really not liking tonight’s match-up.

  7. Andre,

    I feel your pain, man. It’s brutal. i have to change the channel frequently between pitches just to get a break from those buffoons.

  8. I keep the mute button at the ready with the Ol’ Hawkeroo. I just wish I could figure out SAP – I’d rather listen to the Spanish broadcast. Incidentally, Nick Swisher works out to ‘Wreck His Sin’. I always knew he was on the God Squad.

  9. Mark-

    There is one upside, every game i learn of a new player who is the best there is for a very specific situation. Like that guy who was the best at scooping Dusty Baker’s son/Giant’s batboy out of the base-path on his way to home.

  10. White Sox placed Crede on the 15-day DL today, so that’s one less person to hate (and more hate to be directed at Pierszinski).

    They called up Josh Fields to start at third tonight.

  11. Andre, that picture of Placido is damn hilarious. I was in the middle of drinking some chocolate milk and I laughed so hard that it came out my left ear.

  12. Fields vs Tigers:

    32AB 11H 5HR 8RBI .344BA

    vs Robertson (ok, small sample)

    3AB 2H 1HR 2RBI .667BA

  13. Ken Hawk Harrelson: Whale Rank Honkers

    I’m also probably the last person to know this, but the Hawk fired Dave Dombrowski back in ’86.

  14. Fields did have some good games against us, but he wasn’t exactly tearing it up at AAA:


    his 775 OPS goes with 77 K’s in 222 AB (34.6% K-rate, that’s Adam Dunn territory)

  15. I’m not too worried about Floyd, i’m just worried about how Hawk will take it if the greatest (insert overly specific adjective) pitcher he’s seen gets lit up.

    Also, how common-knowledge is it that Grandy will swing on the low and inside pitch for the strike out? Is it at the high-heat-to-Pudge level?

  16. I’m at the Park bar at the corner of Park and Elizabeth if anyone wants to buy me a beer.

  17. Well you know, Andre, Gavin does have the best curveball from a right-hander pitching on Fridays in Detroit wearing #34 that Hawk’s ever seen. And I mean ever.

    Reminds him of a right-handed Steve Carlton, in fact. (I don’t even know what that means. Why wouldn’t you just say Bert Blyleven, or some righty with a good curveball? Why Steve Carlton, a lefty? How is that a good comparison? I’m pissed at Hawk already now. That’s just stupid to say. Man I hate that guy.)

  18. I’m so pumped about this series. I just hope I don’t get let down. I’m already having vodka/redbulls. Next weekend I get to see the boys Friday, Saturday, and Sunday live in person. I pray that they are playing for something then.

  19. Mark-

    My pain is increased greatly by the presence of a Sox fan roommate who’s a HUGE Hawk fan; he echo’s him every time with “you can put it on the booooARD…YES!”

    He’s the most ungracious winner i’ve ever seen, and i mean ever. Kind of reminds me of a white Paul Pierce.

    Needless to say that when we swept the Sox this year, my silence was deafening and he had to break it with, “well come on, I know you’re gonna say something!” I smiled, and said nothing.

  20. Can 7:05 hurry up and get here already!?! Their day off has seemed like a week.. Super stoked for this series.! I will buy you a beer Billfer. very smart to go to the bar where i’m sure they aren’t charging 8.50 / 10 bucks whatever it is a glass @ Comerica.

  21. Andre and Ryan, my sympathies that you have to put up with insufferable fans in your own home. In your case, Andre, his behavior is grounds for a pillow wrapped tighly across his face as he sleeps, and held firmly until there are no signs of movement.

    No jury would convict you. Not in Illinois, anyway.

  22. I want the streets of woodward and gratiot to be awash with blood. I want gavin floyd’s head on a pike. I want carlos quentin to be stung by bees and bitten by a razorback.

    Let’s go tigers!

  23. 5 pitch first for Nate? um, wow. nice.

    I seem to recall the Sox doing the same favor for Verlander the last time they played. I hope it turns out the same for us.

  24. Yes, DP broken up, throw to the dugout! Woo-hoo! Magglio catches a break, 1-0 Tigers.

  25. Great slide by Carlos!

    (Brian – the home plate is the notoriously awful C.B. Bucknor, so be ready for some batters getting screwed, and maybe the Gameday data to disappear as it did earlier this season on a game he umpired.)

  26. Miggs caught looking, 1st inning over. Floyd’s working hard, lotsa pitches. Cool. I like the way this is starting. Even got the Sox error someone called for early in the thread.

  27. Konerko Ks on a foul tip, Nate is… well, give me an anagram, someone. Rotten Onbaser? Seems to be a good thing.

  28. I admire the steps Shef is willing to take to help out his fantasy baseball owners…

  29. I get this sinking feeling sometimes. I even have a name for it. I call it “Edgar.”

    Renteria Ks on 3 pitches.

  30. Guillen nails the runner at the plate! 1st and 2nd, 2 out. Come on, Nate. Escape.

  31. Well, once again frickin’ Comcast is not able to show MLB Extra Innings and I can’t see the Tiger game. I was pumped to watch this game, too!

    I’m stuck watchin’ the Braves, which is even more painful cause Jurrjens is pitching well (as usual) and Omar Infante just made a web gem at third.

    Is it a packed house at Comerica tonight? Big game! Big series! Hate everything about the Sox.

  32. Robertson Ks Quentin on 3! Give Pudge some credit (blocked ball in dirt a batter or two ago) for the tie score.

  33. Thanks Brian (in Tampa),

    You must have Direct TV, aye? Too many trees down here for satellite!

  34. When konerko sweeps the dirt with his hand is he telling aj to signal for a throw to first?

  35. Dave

    Bighthouse cable. Real good down here. Polanco single Grandy to third 0 outs.

  36. Maybe not, he must be on no sleep due to new baby. He hasn’t been the same since all star game

  37. How good is Maggs? He is the definition of a professional hitter.

    Cabrera is becoming the beast we thought he would be.

  38. We’ll take it any way we can . . . plus credit to Sheff for running it out (granted he was probably anticipating trying to beat out a DP)

  39. Yeah, good inning, but no excuse for Pudge GDP. None. Ever. Tigers are the GDP kings, gotta be.

  40. I really liked the hustle and slide of miggy into second. Gives me a good feeling about this series. We’re not afraid of these guys.

  41. Can’t leave three guys on base Pudge! Sox lead MLB in late inning scoring. We need every run. Especially with Nate (and mabye Todd Jones) pitching!

  42. What’s with this Floyd guy though, errors seem to follow him like fleas follow a stray dog…it must be his fault somehow…

  43. See, now if you had Inge instead of Pudge, you get the benefit of the inevitable strikeout, which leaves the inning alive…

  44. Texting updates to friends camping up in Harrisville who can’t get the game in on their radio. Uggh! Bummer for them.. they’re missing a good far

  45. DP, Nate’s butt-Polanco-Cabrera! The batter? Can’t remember, who cares. Konerko? Woo-hoo! Go Nate. Go Nate’s butt.

  46. But I’m probably just irritable seeing how I missed all the fine anagrammatica.

    Well, OK, maybe it’s not too late to throw out one for Nate:

    Banter Stonero

  47. We are split here on the Crede-Pierzynski thing in the mcb. household, but the other mcb agrees with Mauer and raises you one Carlos Gomez

  48. It’s come to this, Renteria’s batting last. Wow.

    Not the same guy on saw in Atlanta last year.

  49. I’ll see your carlos gomez and reraise you the words “scrappy” “smallball” and “punto”

  50. You can ALWAYS hear that whistling guy/screaming 7-year-old-girl in the Detroit radio broadcasts. Loud.

  51. What’s that god awful whistling supposed to do? Annoy the Sox into defeat?

    I’m thinking at some point in the next inning or so we’re going to hear the whistle start, then the sound of a chain saw, then some screaming.

  52. Polanco out (somehow). Tigers gone in the 4th.

    We’re gonna need some more runs. I suggest getting them, or at least some more off Floyd. According to Farmer and Stone, his curve is nowhere to be found. He’s got nothing without it.

  53. Falling behind 3-0 to OC… walks him. Temporary disappearance of control. Come on back, Nate.

  54. This is not good. You can’t get up 0-2 on a guy then let him go that quickly.

    EDIT: However, that was good. Frankly that was a very good pitch to hit, Nate’s fortunate it stayed in the park.

  55. Nate owning AJ at 0-2… fastball down and in, 1-2… in the dirt, 2-2… outside, 3-2… walks him. OK, Nate is showing Nate now.

  56. Ha ha ha, Quentin pops out to LF to end the threat. That used to be the Tigers. No more!

  57. mcb: “Sean C. – that was quite the jinx there buddy! game ain’t over yet!”

    Heyyyy wait a minute, ain’t you da guy what jinxed the Rangers when they played the sox a couple days ago…yeah, I thought so…

  58. I’m in boston and the blimp over fenway for the yanks series has a tv on it. It’s showing like ufc promos or some such. Pretty cool, never seen that.

    Yeah maggs!

  59. “Sorry Coleman. It looks so stupid to me.”

    You can probably insult him all you want about it, and not get under his skin, but I bet if fans started walking up to him on the street and saying, “Hey! Darko!” he’d lose it fast….

  60. Partial redemption for Hawk:

    On Cabrera-
    “For a big guy, he has some of the best plate coverage I have ever seen.”

    Eff if he hasn’t worn out the “i have ever seen” though.

  61. Dave, but does maggs want the batting title more than the first base ump wants a cheeseburger?

  62. Uh, that was probably the other mcb. (there’s two of us… the smart one and the one that jinxes the Rangers.)

  63. Sox pen warming up…. 3-1 on Catt Joyce… foul, 3-2…. Oh God, stupid Tigers, killing the inning on Joyce K and Maggs caught in rundown. Awful. Could come back and bite, big time.

  64. Can’t see the game but I’m assuming you’re talking about the ‘token’ fat-guy MLB ump. Not too pretty!

  65. Brian – I am not unfortunately. But my girlfriend is going tomorrow with her friend. She’s a yankees fan – so hopefully she can survive the meathead capital of the world (fenway area…with fanueil hall a close second)

  66. They would have sent Maggs on the Cabrera hit, but why take the risk when you can just have him steal home later?

  67. Honestly, they should have chased Floyd by now. This is no good. Nate had better be.

  68. Does that horrible squealing only happen when the Tigers are up to bat? wt *ahem* heck Someone needs to knock that kid

  69. I hate plays like Ordonez getting picked off. Besides the obvious reasons it tends to paralyze gameday a bit…

  70. Who is this darko? If he’s a detroit sports figure, you’d think I’d have seen him play some.

  71. Ahead 0-2 on Konerko… pop out near the plate, Pudge squeezes it (a Pat Hughesism).

  72. “Honestly, they should have chased Floyd by now.”

    Maybe they are nursing him, like an expensive cocktail, in order to savor his suckiness throughout the game…

  73. Forty….

    WAHAHAHHH our first-round draft pick… few years ago… Detroit Pistons. Perhaps you’re familiar with their work.

  74. Well, someone made an out, top 6th over. I got distracted trying to read a Coleman post.

  75. Forty: “Who is this darko? If he’s a detroit sports figure, you’d think I’d have seen him play some.”

    Strangely enough, forty is both your name and Darko’s career scoring total.

  76. Oh well coleman at least if he only scored forty points he must have been some late round draft pick or cheap free agent. So no harm no foul.

  77. Vince of Many Lakes: “How long is Robertson’s contract?”

    Actually I think I saw it, and to me it just looked like the typical 8 1/2 x 11 type.

  78. Floyd has been pitching just well enough tonight to prevent the explosion. But props to Nate for 6 solid innings.

  79. Sean C: “I got distracted trying to read a Coleman post.” Aw, you can do better than that, they are all so short today, you might almost say…pithy.

    Go back and read one of those comparisons of various pitchers pitching to the various catchers posts, THEN you have a good excuse.

  80. When you make a mistake to edgar renteria…you usually throw the next pitch to edgar renteria

  81. “M. Joyce struck out swinging, M. Ordonez caught stealing, catcher to shortstop to catcher to third to catcher to shortstop”

    Gameday has improved a bit; at least this time it doesn’t sound like a triple-play. It must take a finer mind than mine to find a run scored anywhere in there though…

  82. my seven year old son likes to call Renteria – Diaheria, but I’m not going to player hate!

  83. Coleman

    Your so darn witty. 🙂 I can’t stop laughing. The vodka/red bulls help.

  84. More from the Dao of Hawk:

    “You know who was great at setting a line-up…LaRussa (sp?)”

    Ah yes, LaRussa, one half of the inept staff Hawk fired as GM…the other of course would be DD.

  85. I’m assuming gameday and yahoo are using the little-understood but useful tactic of posting the Provisional Run in their box scores…

  86. Curtis hanging tough… killing Floyd with foul balls… 19 straight foul balls (j/k)… flies out to left as Quentin gloves the rapidly sinking ball. Buzzkill.

  87. Yeah, got a few Boston friends down here too, they hate ’em. He screwed them too. Plays good in the NL only.

  88. Quentin is a butcher in left – he’s taken some awful routes to balls and made an adventure out of some routine plays. Now if he were a tiger the smoking hunch would be taking him out about now for nook logan’s defense.

  89. Nate still going in the 7th. This is not good, he can’t last. Field lines a single, goodbye Nate – please.

  90. mcb: “Dave – sadly, the other mcb (my 30-year-old husband) calls him that too.” You mean Ol’ Jinxer McB??

    (Actually with the 7-yr old I wouldn’t be 100% certain that calling him diarhhea is intended as an insult…)

  91. 2 on, none out. Get him outta here. He shouldn’t have come out to begin with. I’m going to be sick.

  92. I was just about to ask if anyone was else was surprised that Jim ran Nate back out there, but then he pulled him. Oh well.

  93. “Did anyone doubt this would happen if Nate came out for another inning?’

    No. The wheels were coming off of Nate in the 5th already.

  94. Zumaya yields a single to start the festivities. Yes, always good to give Tigers relievers a couple runners to start out. 4-2 Tigers.

  95. I was surprised to see Robertson come out for the seventh, but even more surprised to see Zumaya come out this early.

  96. Coleman – yeah, ol’ Jinxer mcb. Tonight he is busy alternately blackberrying his friends with complaints about the pitching and screaming expletives at the television.

  97. Yes Kyle, but even with so many comments, there is a nice flow; for we all post in the brief pithy mode, unlike the manner at some, shall we say, less prestigious blogs, where the comments become longer and heavier as the game goes on, as though they were all some manner of Blogging Betancourts….

  98. mcb: “Coleman – yeah, ol’ Jinxer mcb. Tonight he is busy alternately blackberrying his friends with complaints about the pitching and screaming expletives at the television.”

    Actually I’m somewhat impressed…it’s not at all a simple thing to have the dexterity to have both thumbs going and still have use of the middle digit…

  99. I know this is hindsight, but I wouldn’t have had Nate come out for the 7th. He was just lucky before in a couple situations.

    Leyland is starting to manage the pitching staff like – dare I say it – Trammell did, at the end of his tenure. It’s very reactive as opposed to proactive.

    (other mcb. screams “oh my ******** god!!!” at 3-0 count on Quentin.)

  100. “Polly goes in to calm Zoom Boy.”

    That usually works; and if you watch closely, after Polly leaves you can see Zumaya’s lips mouthing: “mmm…big burrito…mmm”

  101. Zumaya gets the hook? OK. Maybe not. Dye pops out to Cabrera. Good. But only 2 outs. I’m still very afraid.

  102. You cannot have your savvy veteran catcher do crap like that. Sure wish cabrera hadn’t been able to tag on the sac…

  103. I think it was sean who said we’d miss some of those runs we left on the basepaths…amen brother

  104. Sloppy hitting, sloppy baserunning, sloppy fielding, sloppy pitching, sloppy managing.

  105. Thome IBB, Konerko up.

    Leave it to Zoom Boy. I blame him for 4-4. OK, Pudge too.

    Pudge saves a run, he’s off the hook.

    Curve nails Konerko. Whatever. Bad Zoom Boy. Bad Tigers. Handing this one right back to the Sox, like they’re the Royals or the Rangers.

  106. I didn’t see the play so I was giving Pudge the benefit of the doubt, I thought maybe Quentin was stealing Left.

  107. Actually, other mcb. just left to take a shower. He said he can’t stand to watch any more.

    Shucks, I hope he still takes me to tomorrow night’s game. He might not. Look for our tickets on StubHub tomorrow morning, folks…

  108. ViM: “Sloppy hitting, sloppy baserunning, sloppy fielding, sloppy pitching, sloppy managing.”

    But the blogging, dammit, tight as a drum!

  109. We scored a few on errors, this just evens things out. We’ll be alright. shows an ER v. Zumaya, that’s gotta be a mistake, right?

  110. Actually I’m somewhat impressed…it’s not at all a simple thing to have the dexterity to have both thumbs going and still have use of the middle digit…

    love that Coleman..too funny

    stifling a “jeepers” here

  111. Forty. I don’t know – radio guys (Chi) said it was really a WP not PB.

    Guillen – HR to right!! 398 feet! 5-4 Tigers!!

    Ordonez single! 1 out.

  112. Kevinaustin: “ shows an ER v. Zumaya, that’s gotta be a mistake, right?”

    I can’t actually answer that, since the rules involving non-error error-like things, e.g passed-balls and wild-pitches, can only correctly be applied by a small group of Cooperstown Jesuit monks, who amazingly enough do all the calls for all of MLB on a pro-bono basis.

  113. Coleman;
    You’re absolutely right. It’s not like there is anything at stake here. We should just enjoy the game.

  114. NICE!

    I gave in and gave the score update to showering mcb. He is still not real happy though.

    Maybe the average f-bombs per sentence will drop from 4.5 to 3 or so.

  115. I’m starting to get pissed. My damn MLB package keeps going in and out. I just missed the Guillen homer.

  116. ‘Manda: “stifling a “jeepers” here”

    That’s wise of you, overdo the “jeepers” and they will become as stale as a Chris Berman home-run call…

  117. Well, he parked it somewhere. It sounded hard hit. 6-4-3 inning-ending DP. But they have the lead again. Buckle your seat belts again and hope for Good Uncle Nando.

  118. BiT: mine too, and I’m on the West Coast which MLB thinks is in Kansas, so either it’s happening globally, or they are intentionally singling out Tiger fans, which I wouldn’t put past them…

  119. Yeah Caroline!

    Maybe her baseball knowledge will lead her to a lifetime of happiness married to a crazy f-bomb screaming schizophrenic baseball nut, just like it worked out for me.

    (I wouldn’t have it any other way).

  120. Okay, I’m getting the other mcb. back on here to jinx this game if you all don’t stop it with the shower thing.

  121. At any point do we think the words “ladies man” and “fernando rodney” were ever used in the same sentence?

  122. Walks Fields. It’s time to bring out the Insult Artillery, nothing else is working.

    F-Rod is washed up. He sucks.

  123. From the home page:

    ” [Todd Jones] is a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde … you don’t know what you are getting …”
    — DC Tiger More from this MLBlog…

    Actually I would say he is more like a Dr Jekyll who chugs the steaming monster cocktail, but then luckily the movie usually ends right before the part where he goes full Hyde and chews the limbs off all the children.

  124. Rod allen creeping me out with all the “look how slim he is” talk about ramirez

    Yeah edgar, that’s how you get blasted and still turn two orlando!

  125. Rodney is the man. He started out shaky when he came back, but he has been looking really good lately.

  126. 4-6-3 inning ending DP. Rodney got lucky. He had nothing on that pitch, wasn’t fooling anyone. I’d send him to Toledo if I could. Bum.

    And now we have Jones to look forward to, our so-called “closer.” I’ve had enough of that guy and his low budget mustache.

  127. Poll, from other mcb., now watching the game: Who would you rather have at short, Neifi or Diarrhea?

    (that’s what he said, sorry).

  128. Well, obviously Ramon. But this is like one of those things where you can’t have what is the obvious best choice.

    It’s more like, what would you rather eat, boogers or ear wax?

  129. Joyce Ks. Matt Joyce, destined to spend the balance of his career riding the Seawolves bench. Needlessly stealing AB from Marcus Thames.

    I just know Sheff and Renteria will also strike out. I can feel it in my bones. 6 pitches.

    EDIT: OK, Pudge Ks. It’s not easy being negative, Very distracting.

  130. We also are wondering how Thames can possibly be sitting on the bench quietly watching Sheffield and Renteria play so badly. You’d think his head would explode by now.

    Speaking of, there’s that screaming/whistling again.

  131. I think that DP was the longest stretch I’ve seen Cabrera make that wasn’t followed by a wobble and plop.

  132. “We also are wondering how Thames can possibly be sitting on the bench quietly watching Sheffield and Renteria play so badly. You’d think his head would explode by now.

    Speaking of, there’s that screaming/whistling again.”

    My GOD, THAT’s what it IS! Grab the kids, head for the exits! Save yourselves! Thames’ head is a-gonna BLOW!!

  133. Having not yet been to Comerica, would y’all describe the whistling as epidemic or pandemic?

  134. Sadly we probably have no pitcher that is going to hold this lead in the top of the 9th. Anyone expect otherwise?

  135. Well, Pudge is out, somehow, I guess. Blah.

    “boogers or ear wax?”

    I like Chris in D’s “turd sandwich or crap taco.”

  136. “Please note that you must be at least 52 inches tall to ride the Roller Coaster.”

    Haha! Take a seat Eckstein! Only grownups on the Roller Coaster chump!

  137. Twins lose. Whatever.

    Other mcb. predicting a Jones loss this inning. (Direct quote: “Smoke ’em if you’ve got em.”)

    Does that mean there’s hope? I’m confused.

  138. “I like Chris in D’s “turd sandwich or crap taco.”

    I guess there’s a reason Dallas isn’t renowned for it’s food…

  139. I’m stopping now I have to concentrate on consuming my own innards while I watch Jones…

  140. Then the dreaded 0 – 2 single. What’s next in the script I forget, the Walk or the HBP?

  141. No F’N way. Jones get out. I tried to be positive. You screwed me for the last time.

  142. Oh my God. 2 run homer for Dye.

    Don’t give up Tigers. You can get it back. Yes you can. It ain’t over.

  143. This game should have been put away in the 5th inning. How many ways can a “closer” screw a team in one year.

  144. wow, a lot of posts tonight.

    and what a come-from-ahead-chokejob by the tigers…

    good job!!!

  145. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA…….who can’t see it coming?

    Why is this management so blind to how bad he is when really needed!

  146. Mario called the home run “unbelievable.” Anyone could’ve predicted that. It was more unbelievable that he got the first two guys he faced out. Does Jones know not to throw meatball pitches when the batter has an 0-2 count?

  147. NO, this is on Todd.

    A closer’s job is to put the goddamn game away, regardless of score, and he can’t do it.


  148. Thome out. OK, 6-5 Sox going into botto of 9th. Due up, hmmm. Renteria-Granderson-Polanco.

    Edgar, you can make it all up with a hit that ends up counting. This is a no-can-lose, dude. Get poor Todd off the hook. He’s gonna have a nervous breakdown soon.

  149. Well, that’s good. And it’s our lucky day, leading off the 9th, ‘rrrrrrrrEdgar Renteria!!!

  150. By the way….there were also two DP’s with 1 out and men on 3rd this game!

    This is not the KC Royals we’re playing!

  151. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA…….who can’t see it coming?

    And the answer is: “The numerator is the number of ‘sky’ posts made when the Tigers trail in a game. The denominator is the number of ‘sky’ posts made when the Tigers lead in a game.”

    “What is the definition of ‘infinity’?”

  152. I’m sure Leyland thinks pinch-hitting, say, a Thames-type of batter (ahem) for Renteria would damage Rents confidence. He may be right about that. But if he understood how much doing so would INCREASE the confidence of all the fans…see what I’m saying Uncle Smokey? Kind of a “greater good” type of thing?

  153. I think anyone in the pen could be as effective as Jones. He does his best but thats the fact.

  154. Maybe Dombrowski can watch Jenks and see what a closer’s supposed to do. Un-friggin-believable.

  155. “We have no closer.”

    Amen, brother.

    Grandy grounds out. Oof. All up to Polly. I should feel good. I don’t.

  156. WCT: “We have no closer.”

    Oh that’s fine actually , we don’t need one, since we aren’t ahead.

  157. It is very believable sadly. UnFORGIVable is what it is. I blame the front office, for keeping that so-called closer for so long.

  158. Polanco gone 5-3. I can’t even hang around for the postgame. Sickening loss.

    Great thread, though.

  159. Quentin and dye are fabulous hitters. Jones is what he is – an average to below average closer. What about pudge’s gidp with bases juiced? Or pudge’s pb/throwing error? Or zumaya not getting a big k when that’s what he was brought in to do? Or nate letting the first two guys on in the seventh? It’s a team sport.

  160. Sky: “.I said it was coming!”

    I have to admit I didn’t…I was sure a Walk or HBP would come first…

  161. Gosh, what an exciting game. You just can’t beat a Friday night with a well-played baseball game. And tip your cap to those Chicago White Sox while you are at it. Go Tigers.

  162. From the stomping overhead…I just figured out the neighbors are Sox fans…and the hurt continues…

  163. Jones needs to go to management and say “I suck please don’t put me in anymore”. “I’m an emabrassement to the fans and my teammates and I don’t deserve to wear the old english D”.

    Jones you frigin’ hick go back to ‘Bama!

    I’m sick of writing the same blog for the last three years!

  164. It must be nice to have an effective closer. Chicago fans must really feel good when they see Jenks enter a game.

    And what the hell was Renteria doing leading off the 9th?

  165. words cannot describe how I feel right now…i feel kinda violated and flirted with, like we’re up the whole friggin game, then idiot lets a .280 hitter off the hook with an 0-2 single, and then lets a guy who was owned today (0-4) hit an OPPOSITE field HR, inexcusable.

    Yet another hard luck loss for Nate too.

    Honestly, Jones should be DFA’d. Here’s the reason, when a Papelbon, or a Rivera come into the game, fans/management/players can taste victory.

    We don’t have that with Jones. We worry. We may joke about it, but we all know we’d prefer a closer who finishes games.

    When we hear Jones is coming into the game, we worry. I hate that.

  166. This doesn’t quite make sense, but somehow leyland leaving a 19hr stud who leads the team in ops on the bench and hitting renteria hurts more than dye’s home run. The latter is part of the game. The former is only part of the tigers’ game.

  167. There’s no way to prove this definitively, but I think Jones has hit the tipping point from being serviceable to being consistently unreliable. In each of the last three months, he has a WHIP over 1.60 and an ERA over 5.00.

    There’s not really anything that can be done. I don’t think any of us would trust Zumaya or Rodney in the 9th either.

    It just is. And it sucks.

  168. It’s funny how all night the same people are posting on the blog. Then the 9th inning comes around and “other” people show up to throw jabs in. Interesting. Verlander tomorrow. Time to even the series.

  169. OMG!! How many times do tigers fan have to go through this when Jonesy comes to the mound? It’s like every time they show him warming up it’s “Oh No here we go AGAIN!” Its getting old. We need to get a new closer if we are going to have any chance of moving on past the regular season. TIME TO RETIRE JONES!!!!!

  170. This game was lost in the 7th when Nate came back out. And it’s not just hindsight, Sean called it before the Tigers batted in the bottom of the 6th.

  171. Vince in MN, maybe you should go back to your crossword puzzles and leave the blogging to us. Brutal.

  172. Brian-

    I hear you. Not a peep from all my co-workers until after Dye’s two run jack…post-hr…3 texts and a call.

  173. Jones is killing us. He starts off the Twin series with a killer first game blown save and then he fails us again in the first game of this series.

  174. One final comment for this game. Earlier this year Jones piled up a series of saves. But if you check you will see that often he gave up several runs on huge leads even when he got them. He rarely is able to hold a one run lead and never does so against a good team. Maybe against Texas or the Milwaukee Brewers, but never against the Twins, or the Sox. He is just lucky when he does finish a game. The Tigers don’t stand a chance until they find a real closer they can rely on. This is the simple and undeniable fact of MLB in 2008.

  175. Win the next 2 and it’s all good, I suppose. But letting Nate out for the 7th feels retarded.

  176. I don’t like todd jones. He’s not a good closer. But this dfa talk is silly. We’ve played more than 100 games this year. We’ve won over 50. And while it’s easy to post after a lead is blown and say you knew it was going to happen, the fact is: if jones was coming into the game with a lead of three runs or less, your “premonition” has only been right three times this season. Again, I don’t think todd jones is good. But this rush of jones hatred after every blown save reminds me of kids blaming the goalie in youth soccer.

  177. Hey Brian from Tampa, my tv is in the other room. Forgive me for watching the game, then comnig hear to talk about my frustrations with the team after they lose.

    I guess that means something…wtf?

  178. I think there are valid points to go around. If you’re going to blame Todd for giving up 2, you also blame Zumaya and Pudge for the 2 they gave up. On the other hand, Todd is ALWAYS an adventure. To his credit (?) he usually gets it done. The problem is that even when he gets it done, its a white-knuckle affair…thus when he doesn’t, its that much harder to endure. I think that people have a right to expect with the payroll the Tigers have, that when the “closer” comes in, it means something. And by “something” i mean more saves and less heart-problems.

  179. Dickerson just read off the following stats:

    Jones has blown 3 of his last 7 save opportunities and has allowed 10 runs in his last 10 innings.

    And he just killed the season with his performance tonight.

    Quite the accomplishments.

  180. I’m usually in a rude mood when Todd ” the broken roller coaster that sucks and should be thrown in a scrap yard” Jones blows games, especially this one.

  181. Melodrama aside, the season has been “called” several times so far…and you know what, the Tigs are still in it. Jones is an issue, yes. Would i like to see him replaces, yes. Who are we suggesting take his place? Are we looking at existing bullpen arms? If so, who’s shown the ability, skill or mental, to fill his shoes. The organization hasn’t been shy about justifying Jones based on mentality alone…they feel he’s the best suited to handle the pressure (and fan outrage) day in and out.

    The suggestion box is open.

  182. Leland is beyond incredible . . . his post game quote . . .”We just didn’t do enough to win this game”. WTF??? No, you did enough, you just have a washed up closer that instead of standing on the mound belongs selling used Chevy’s on 8 mile!!!

    I swear . . . Leland has a line of BS longer than Barack Obama! Maybe when Jimmy finally get’s canned, he could wake up one morning from a phone call requesting he be BO’s VP . . .

    Jones is a Joke, if DD doesn’t do something about him, this team is dumber than they even appear.

  183. Forty,

    It’s not that some of us are rushing to hatred for Jones. It’s is just that he cannot be trusted because he always seems to struggle, even when he does get the save. And the fact that he has blown saves against two of the divisional rivals that we are chasing drives many of us crazy.

    So many of us look around the league and see guys like K-Rod, Jinks, Rivera, Pappelbon, Nathan– the list goes on and on– all guys that instill confidence and we have this joke of a closer.

  184. Okay, we all know the problem, but what’s the answer? Is Zoom ready?

    Can we deal Sheffield for a serviceable closer (doubt it)? If KC would take Joyce for Soria, would you do it (in a heartbeat)? How about Joyce + Thames for Soria + change?

    What will you give up for Sherrill? And does he do that much for you?

  185. Andre . . . how about ANYBODY in the bullpen besides Jones. Honestly, do you really think Dolsi or Lopez would consistently be as incompetent as Jones. How many saves this year by Jones have been gimmes? How many 1-2 inning saves has he blown? What did Jenkes do in the ninth tonight? He didn’t get two outs and get behind 2-0 on the third hitter, did he?

    Point . . . wtf are they waiting for w/Jones? Can Dolsi or Lopez or Zumaya be any worse?

  186. Just as a reminder…the 2007 saves leader was released this year. Oh, and after the three-way tie for 2nd, Jones was #3 in saves last year.

    I’m no huge fan of the Jones…but lets put things in perspective, there aren’t 30 dominant closers in the league. Should we have one with this payroll, yes. Do we, no. Did we think we did? I dunno, he was #3 last year, you tell me.

  187. I could deal with a blown save from Zoom. He at least has an out pitch. What does Jones have? He prays the batter hits the ball at somebody. Zumaya pitches great when he starts an inning. He has to learn to close some time.

  188. Mark-

    I don’t know if the rest of the bullpen would do better. Dolsi seems to have a new description tacked on daily here, and I haven’t seen much of Lopez (i’m in chicago and only recently got the mlb package). I’ve suffered through plenty of Jones, believe me, but the “closer” role is difficult for a reason: mental pressure. So until the rest of the bullpen is exposed to it, we don’t know if they would be more or less competent. I don’t think you can fault the organization too much for going into the season with last years #3 closer (yes i’ve made that point already). could we use an upgrade, somebody that won’t make me bald/white hair soon, yeah…fantastic. but show me who and for how much.

  189. Jones pitches to contact. Good closers come in to strike people out or break bats. That is his biggest problem.

  190. If you want to win the AL Central, you HAVE to have a closer who can close w/a 1-2 run spread going into the ninth? Who here has confidence that the game will be won when they see Jones trot out to the mound w/that kind of spread, raise your hands?

    And how long has the team been aware of this problem? Remember the 7 inning game Jones blew last year? Forget the stats, look at the man as a closer. The top priority for this club is getting someone to fill this position.

  191. But Andre, does the no. 3 stat really fit Jones, think about that? Is it just luck or circumstance that he was at 3? I ask myself, what does Jones have? A mediocre fastball, a less than stellar breaking ball . . . that’s it. He pitches to contact, and w/a 1-2 run lead, is that the sort of closer you want if you are in a pennant race? The points about mental pressure are valid, but look at Jones when he is out there, he looks as stressed as Rodney most of the time.

    These men are professionals, and they serve one purpose, get three outs in the ninth w/o letting the opposing team score one or two runs usually. Todd Jones performance tonight was inexcusable and he should be ashamed of himself.

  192. I think if that’s all there was to being a closer there wouldn’t be a league shortage. We give Zumaya more slack because he’s a 100+mph pitcher who has “upside”. Neither of those things has direct bearing on closing. He may well be the future closer…or starter depending on what our need is that day, but come on, he’s not perfect either with a 1.90whip.

  193. Agreed, Brian. The Very, Very Right Rev. Ninja Strudel will be on tomorrow and right this ship. Word.

  194. We can still take two of three.

    Don’t worry, I already figured we’d lose this one. It would have been a super bonus had we won, and we almost did.

    Just can’t get swept.

  195. Here’s an idea. There are 2 outs and the count is 0-2. How about wasting a couple of pitches. High cheese (89 mph from TJ) or a couple in the dirt. I will say, Pudge’s throw into leftfield with 2 outs was the dumbest play all night.

  196. mark-

    what would you attribute Borowski’s #1 status last year to? and his subsequent decline?

    Jones sucked tonight, but don’t think that by plugging in Zumaya and his fastball that we’ve solved the problem (I mean, maybe we would, who knows…but faster doesn’t equal better). The mental strain of closing goes overlooked. Do you want to stick ‘Maya out there too early and have him get shelled? Jones has been the fall guy for a while, but lets not forget that he was very effective in the “got the save despite” kind of way.

    Again, there is a reason the league doesn’t have a surplus of closers. You want Jones gone, fine: show me who, and shoe me how much.

  197. “Maybe against Texas or the Milwaukee Brewers”

    Pssst, Sky: The Brewers are good this year. And a little balance, please. I know we all need to blow off some frustrated steam, but jeez.

  198. Andre, those are all really great points and I think they briefly flashed through my mind in the immediate aftermath of tonight’s loss…which is probably why I didn’t wield my coffee table as a club to smash my TV into pieces.

  199. I will say that anyone who reads Bill Simmons will recognize this game as a potential “stomach punch”.

  200. Chris – agreed, todd jones is not as good as jonathan papelbon, mariano rivera, and any of the other best closers in the league. He is frustrating to watch and not dominant. He is not confidence inspiring.

    But no one in our pen has been good this year. Zumaya has a nice era but 1. He also played a major role in this loss 2. His peripherals are yucky. Three quarters of the people on this blog think rodney should be lit on fire.

    I wish we had a badass. And so does dd – I’m sure he didn’t count on urbina and percival turning out how they did.

    I get annoyed when people act like the only reason we lost today or are not in first in the division is todd jones. That’s nonsense. It’s renteria, sheffield, bonderman injury, willis flameout, terrible managing, and bad bullpen all around. Again, it’s a team game.

  201. I don’t think we need to trade anyone. Zumaya has been mentally preparing himself for sometime for this. How long do you wait? Do you blow the rest of the season off and chalk it up to semi-rebuilding, or take a chance on Zumaya. Let Joel or Dolsi head out in the ninth the next 5-4 game. There would be a bigger pile of chips supporting that decision than riding the bleak Jones loser train.

    Good points made earlier. How many people are confident that Jones can pull off the save against a decent rival team w/only a 1 or 2 run lead?

    If Zumaya or Dolsi don’t get the job done, what do you lose? They can’t be worse than Jones in his last few outings.

  202. I have always gone along with the “Roller Coaster” moniker for TJ. Even going so far as to refer to him amongst friends as “TRCJ” for brevity. No more. A roller coaster never makes me feel this terrible. Never.

  203. just heard a “detroit sucks” chant from upstairs. there may or may not be a delay in my next post as i light the building on fire and make a break for it.

  204. The next 2 games are must wins to me. I don’t care what Leyland says. We must make up at least 1 game. I say score enough runs so that the closer doesn’t have to come in.

  205. Um, maybe I have to take that back about having Thames hit for Renteria. He should have pinch-hit for Granderson. Granderson vs Jenks, career: 11 AB, BA .000, 8K. Crikey.

    Oh, and maybe someone other than Thames. (Career BA vs Jenks: .000. As is Sheffield’s. As is Guillen’s. As is Renteria’s. As is Cabrera’s. As is Clete Thomas’. As is Mike Hessman’s…OK I only added Hessman because–how in the world did he get 3 AB vs Jenks in the few games he played?).

    So you’d want to stick with the Tigers who have hit Jenks, like…let’s see, there’s Jacques Jones (1.000), Timo Perez (1.000), Sean Casey (.667), Chris Gomez (.500), Rondell White (.500), Nook Logan (.500)…OK, that’s not funny.

    But impressive is Ordonez (.375), Polanco (.333), and even Inge (.250/.357 OBP), who seems to have developed the seemingly wise tactic of standing there with the bat on his shoulder, with 2 BB and 5K (3 called) in 14 plate appearances.

    It’s actually somewhat impressive to look at the Pitcher vs Hitter stats on Jenks, and try to find somebody who hits him well…try this stat on:
    # Batters > 2 BB vs Jenks, career: 0
    # Batters > 2 K vs Jenks, career: 14
    # Batters > 2 RBI vs Jenks, career: 3 (all tied at 3)

    HR rate vs Jenks, career: 1 / 65.8 AB
    HR rate vs Jones, career: 1 / 44.7 AB

  206. Forty

    I agree. This game should have been put out of reach in the 5th or 6th inning. It’s not alll Jones’ fault, but in a game like this you have to close it out. That is what playoff teams do.

  207. I laid my head down, and couldn’t fall asleep. I had a nightmare about some guy with the last name Dye. 🙂

  208. mark-

    i get what you’re saying. we’re not the first people to have misgivings about jones, but the fact (used to be) that jones got it done…even if it was nerve wracking. maybe zumaya is the answer, but he’s had the luxury of being our darling flame thrower for the last couple of years, and hasn’t had to fill those shoes often. a closer helps, but does not a team make.

    there’s plenty more wrong with the team than jones (the first run the Sox scored followed an “ingeable” ball down the 3rd base line), but the point is that despite (according to some) horrible: starting, middle and closing pitching; bad defense (me); bad offense; etc… we’re within striking distance to the Sox.

  209. forty-

    if you’re willing to go the extra mile, i’ll buy some orange juice concentrate to make napalm…too much, ok…i’ll be quiet.

  210. Anyone who says that they aren’t rushing to hate Todd Jones is flat out lying. No one gives him credit — not this year, or any time he was in Detroit the last 3 years — when he was fine and everyone piles on when he blows a game. Yes, the home run sucked but there was no complaining when he was 1 strike from closing out the game, was there? No. There wasn’t. Get this Yankee-like fandom out of here. It’s so annoying. Don’t know why I even came to this blog tonight, I knew exactly what it’d be like.

  211. I want Nathan. Or Jenks. Or, even better, Soria.

    Heck, I’ll take whomever Cleveland is trotting out these days. R. Perez? OK, good.

  212. B-I-T: “It’s funny how all night the same people are posting on the blog. Then the 9th inning comes around and “other” people show up to throw jabs in.

    They’re the closers…

  213. I don’t hate Todd Jones. He put the last nail in tonight’s coffin, but he had help as far as putting the box together goes. It’s crazy, but he was a genius for all but one pitch in that 9th inning. And that’s why he’s still a good closer – albeit an unorthodox one – having a rough stretch, and not the piece of crap tonight’s bitter disappointment begs us to call him.

    Zumaya – bad. Pudge – costly bad decision in the heat of the moment (but some important good D otherwise). Ugly play on the Joyce K-Maggs rundown – who to blame, i don’t know. Missed sign, poor judgement? Some crucial failures in RISP AB.

    Worst of all to me was the decision to bring Nate back out for the 7th. Look at the game logs. See how many times leaving Robertson (and others) in too long for a pen that sucks coming in with runners on has cost the Tigers runs and usually games.

    They can bring this whole damn team as it is back for 2009, Neifi Renteria and Travis Sheffield included. The one guy I don’t want to see any more is Leyland. It just has to be demoralizing playing for someone so capricious and inscrutable. A guy who uses the phrase “and that’s the end of that conversation” as often as he does with the press… well, that’s the mark of a guy who’s flying blind, under the guise of being a “hunch guy.”

  214. In a related story to “we would win more games with a better closer than Todd Jones,” I have a series of other suggestions for how we might improve.

    Replace Renteria with Hanley Ramirez
    Replace Guillen with Alex Rodriguez
    Replace Polanco with Chase Utley
    Switch Cabrera to DH and pick up Pujols for first
    Dump Pudge for Mauer…ok wait that was going too far. Or maybe it wasn’t. What if we dumped Pudge for Mauer and then Liriano’d Mauer? I’d never have to look at those sideburns ever again…::drifts into a happy day dream::

  215. Yeah, lets be more like Cleveland…that’s the answer. Ok, I’m frustrated and hence an ass…but seriously?

  216. Mario: “Un..believable…”

    Ah, not really Mario. I beg to differ. Quite believable.

    Rod: “This one… is…a tough one.”

    You think? The Tigers dominate the game down to the 27th batter and down to the very last strike of the game, and it all comes unhinged one pitch later and after another losey plate appearance? Wow.

    The fact is, Todd Jones is a horrible closer. There is no debate, really. People often cite 18 saves to Jones’ credit to muster a counter argument (albeit a feeble one), but what they are really doing is citing an element of fortune. I knew when Jones took the hill the game was literally a coin toss — so as heartbreaking as this loss is, it’s really no big surprise.

    The Tigers have been quite fortunate thus far to close as many games as they have, given the ability of this closer. If you want to get a true idea of the ability of your closer, you should not go by saves (as a more telling save-to-blown-save ratio will certainly regress to the mean over time) — rather, for a more objective analysis look at ERA and WHIP. How can you possibly expect not give up a run when your WHIP is 1.60+ ?? and your ERA is 5.05 ? The answer is, you can’t. Odds hover right over 50% that the opposing team is going to score at least one run each time the pitcher takes the hill. Those are not favorable odds. In fact, those odds are downright horrible.

    Consider (Closers on all AL contending teams):

    Paperbon — ERA: 2.23 WHIP: 0.92
    Rivera – ERA: 1.21 WHIP: 0.67
    Jenks — ERA: 1.83 WHIP: 1.08
    Nathan — ERA: 1.08 WHIP: 0.94
    F-Rod — ERA: 2.33 WHIP: 1.25
    Percival — ERA: 3.34 WHIP: 0.98
    Jones — ERA: 5.05 WHIP: 1.60

    You simply can’t expect to close out games with the kind of stats highlighted above. And you can also clearly see there is no comparing Jones to an adequate closer. This game was like a taser to the groin, but I’m not at all surprised. I wasn’t surpised even after the 0-2 count on Quentin. The game is simply never over when Jones in on the mound. Regardless of circumstance.

  217. T Smith – so what you’re saying is, Todd Jones got unlucky. ERA of 5 = about 1 run every other inning — today it was 2 in one inning! 😉

    You’ll get no argument out of me that Jones isn’t bad though…he is much worse than the other closers you listed above.

    Ok, one other snarky comment: how was Jones vis-a-vis Percival in ’07?

  218. Sean, I agree on the 7th inning. Nate did well to get out of the 5th. He got pounded in the 6th, but lucked out. Bringing him out in the 7th was just stupid. You didn’t have to look at a game log, just the last inning.

    Maybe the same thing happens with the bullpen, but you can’t tempt fate like that, and Jimmuh does it all the time.

  219. My, this place is just one giant mass of histrionics tonight. 400 comments? Really?

    I was at this one. The end was frustrating, but I didn’t see much to fault Leyland on. Robertson was only at 80 some pitches to start the 7th — there was no reason not to bring him in.

  220. Hey, look Percival is in for a save right now with a 3 run lead. If you give up 2 runs you still get a save.

  221. What makes a good closer?


    Borowski #2 in saves [45] (apologize for labeling him #1, that was in the AL):
    85% save percentage (that’s a lot of lucky coin tosses)

    Rivera #17 [30 saves]
    88% save percentage


  222. “They’re the closers…”


    Coleman is the Ordonez of game threads. Piling up the RBI and 2-out RBI, running up a BA well over .300 without ever seeming to have any flashy 4 for 5 games. Consistent production. Why can’t there be any tilde-like mark in his name? Add one, Coleman, so we can call you, I don’t know, The Big Umlaut or something.

  223. I think Sean C should close. He’s got a mid 90’s computer model and a changeup that’s slower than his dialup internet connection but with the same arm motion. He’d be lights out, shades of Trevor H.

  224. Actually that reminds me that I’m still irritated about the Percival situation. Tigers sign Percival; Percival gets big contract; Percival, in Tiger-like fashion, blows out arm; Percival retires; Tigers scramble for closer as they become the worst team in baseball, settling on Machete-Man then Roller-Coaster; Percival thinks, maybe I can still pitch; Hey, Percival CAN still pitch! Percival signs with Cardinals, then Tampa Bay; Percival playoff bound—hey wait a minute, back up.

    If you retire, then decide to come back, and were under contract when you retire, doesn’t the team you were with still own your rights? How does Percival retire in the 1st year of a 3 year deal and then come back as a free agent? Unless…the Tigers didn’t release him from his contract, to be…nice? Did they?

  225. No tilde no;
    I’m without the umlaut.

    But you are getting close…OK, since you’re all so nice…

    I spell my name with an invisible cedilla.

  226. Sean C in Illinois – your post almost had some decently rendered thoughts and/or arguments. Almost. The problem is you used the words “genius” and “Todd Jones” in the same sentence, and it wasn’t even an accident. It even appears that you meant them to relate to one another. You clearly haven’t even a modicum of credibility, because you are criminally insane.

  227. Just remember, it could be worse.

    No b.s. one of my good friends in the Cleve is named Joe Borowski, no relation to the former Indians closer (except in body-type). You can’t begin to imagine the messages he was receiving on facebook. Joe “Fathead” Borowski getting released was the best thing that ever happened to my friend.

  228. “I think Sean C should close.”

    Forty, aside from the computer model (2000 Power Mac G4), you’ve got it mostly right. I’ll never be a good starter as long as I have dial-up. You could feel me losing it right along with Nate by the 6th.

  229. Worse is being in on a Friday night posting about a Tigers loss that happened a couple hours ago. Wait, who said that?

  230. Cedilla Says: for the starting pitcher, the ground-ball inducing pitch is a more useful weapon than the strikeout pitch. For the closer, the opposite is true.

  231. “2007

    Borowski #2 in saves [45] (apologize for labeling him #1, that was in the AL):
    5.07ERA – 85% save percentage (that’s a lot of lucky coin tosses)…”

    Exactly that. A hell of a lot of lucky coin tosses. Odds are, when you keep tossing the coin though (2008) that the tide will turn. You simply can’t keep up that pace with those stats. And that’s exactly what happened.

    Borowski and Jones are virtually the same pitcher. Sometimes it’s better to be lucky than good.

  232. I love how absolutely no one even acknowledges the fact that Todd Jones has thrown 6 innings since July 7th in which he’s given up 1 ER and 5 hits in that time span, before tonight. And 3 of those hits and 2 of those earned runs came in one appearance against the Twins on July 10th.

    Or, how about June 29th: 7.2 IP, 8 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 1 K.

    People are just so blinded by the fact that he doesn’t strikeout every one that he faces or throw 99 that he’s so easy to hate on. It’s absolutely ridiculous and is annoying in and of itself. But on nights like this when people come out of the woodwork it is just down right unbearable. Disgusting.

    Crushing loss. Yes. I’m as disappointed as the next. I guess we should just forfeit the rest of the year and send everyone home with their families and come back next March. No use in even playing out the remaining 60 games of the season.

  233. Coleman, “The Big Cedilla” would sound like I’m accusing you of some gross deformity. Pick another.

  234. I don’t know if Darko is on the Serbian team, but I hope he lights the U.S. up for like 50 and 30 if we play them. I want one play where Bosh, Melo, Wade, and LeBron are all under the rim and he just comes careening down the lane and spikes it on all four.

  235. That’s one advantage to being on the west coast, it’s still afternoon here. A pretty dark afternoon though, to be honest.

  236. Mike R

    Every good closer can strike people out or break bats. Jones does neither. It gets old. He was good early in the season, but now he needs to be great.

  237. Mike R, you and your “stats”

    What’s the fun in that when you can declare armageddon and say with a straight face that one player out of a 25 man active roster is completely responsible for original sin, the 2000 election, and hanson?

  238. “You clearly haven’t even a modicum of credibility, because you are criminally insane.”

    Phil, you do have a point there. But I stand by my contention that Jones – tonight – cruised in typical Good Jones fashion but for one pitch. He’s not the only closer to ever suffer this fate. Happens to the best. He didn’t melt down. I find more fault with Zumaya’s performance.

    Also, I was hoping to score points with Mike R and Dave BW for my non-histrionic stance. It’s what makes me a good closer.

  239. Sean C. I think I want you resting at this point. Save your dialup connection for high leverage posting.

  240. God bless Mike R., always consistent with the ‘hey, these pitchers don’t suck as much as you guys think they do’ line.

  241. Also, for funsies, can I just completely do an about face tomorrow and trash Jones whether or not he appears? Fly in from Boston, get a seat near the pen, and just jeer him all game, followed by bashing him on the blog afterwards? Chris got to say Cabrera should be off the 40 man…

    j/k Chris 😉

  242. Mike R – NEWSFLASH! Earned runs for a closer mean exactly… DICK! Quit defending the POS that is Todd Jones. Were there other plays in the game that could have given the Tigers a bigger lead? Yes. Were there other mistakes? Yes. That doesn’t excuse Jones’ performance. A closer is paid to clean up others’ mistakes. He isn’t paid to come into a game with a 4 or 5 run lead and get us out of it by the skin of our teeth while we all go into cardiac arrest, which seems to be all Jonesy is capable of these days, at best.

    Nobody is saying the season is lost. People are expressing their frustration at how much Jones sucks, and every bit of said frustration is justifiable. End of story. Good night.

  243. Alright, I’m going to bed for real. Tomorrow (today) will be a different day. JV will dominate. Beach during the day. Sand in the face of Ozzie G. at night.

  244. God Bless Stephen’s “only coming around to kick this team when it’s down because who wants to root for a team that’s actually performing well? I’d rather wallow in a terrible team and only bring up the negative at the most negative of times” shtick. Again. Still. Like always.

    Whatever. I’m done here for tonight. It’s beyond ridiculous. This blog makes me long for the days of 100+ losses when fans could still be semi-rational. I guess that’s just a novel concept that winning breeds front runners who just do nothing but complain because who wants to praise people or give credit where credit’s due?

  245. Also — Forty, you are absolutely correct. The Tigers should have had 8 runs anyway. Runner on 3rd base multiple times throughout the game with one out — no runs. Pudge had a brain fart and gave up a run. Zoom allowed all inheirited runners to score. The team as a whole lost this game (not just TJ) — but what you’re basically saying is, in order to ensure victory, every player must come through in every circumstance and make no mistakes, and the team should secure about a five run lead in every game, by the ninth, in order to ensure a W.

    If you expect that though, each team, including the Yankees, Redsox, Rays, Angels — you pick the team — would record just about 43 wins in a season. All the good teams miss opportunites, have costly errors, and fail to cash every time, too. But the best teams also win close games by 1 run and their bullpens/closers hold leads.

  246. Phil, having not run the math or even disagreeing with you that it would be better if Todd Jones were Joe Nathan, I would hypothesize that earned runs mean more than nothing for closers…especially as it comes to predicting save percentage over a large sample

  247. You know, I’ve learned that if you go out and get a little reverse cowgirl action Todd Jones and the stock market’s joint meltdown matter so much less.

  248. The bottom line is Jones came in with a 1 run lead in the 9th. The “closer” is paid to save/win those games. I understand nobody is perfect, but this game is HUGE. Grow a sack TJ.

  249. Dave:

    Who cares about pitch counts? It wasn’t that Robertson was tiring out, it’s that he wasn’t effective. He was getting hit hard. It was only a matter of time before those hits start falling. Leyland got 6 innings out of Nate with one run, but he was lucky to do so. The 7th inning outcome was probable, based on the way he was getting hit.

  250. “Cedilla Says:”

    Too cryptic for me, Coleman. Remember, it’s 2 hours later here. Which reminds me: Why didn’t Ken in Vegas tell us what had happened so we could have started the postgame earlier. Had to run back to his poker game or the blackjack table or something, I guess. Lout.

    Hey, for that matter, why didn’t you tell us, Coleman? You West Coast people are so selfish and untrustworthy, all of you.

  251. T Smith – do “good teams” win close games? My guess is that “lucky teams” win close games…or at least “lucky teams win close games at a rate significantly higher than their overall winning pct.” Understood, having a great 7-8-9 combination probably could help you a little there. But at the end of the day, you are what you are…just a bunch of win shares added up at every position.

    And I hear you that it’s not reasonable to rely on everyone to play mistake-free baseball every night, such that there are no save situations. But just because that is unrealistic doesn’t mean that the mistakes in the fifth inning don’t matter, or that the mistakes in the ninth inning are the only reason we aren’t 15 games over .500.

  252. Can I get down on that too T Smith? I feel like the hottest girl in school flirted with me, asked me to the prom, and then kicked me in the groin on prom night to go with my worst enemy. Also known as “I feel like I’m back in high school.”

  253. In the interest of clarity, it’s written here that I wanted in on the hug, not any sort of wild western fun that stephen has in mind

  254. And Mike R, let’s call him as we see them. The truth is this team is a hair above .500 over the past two years except for a magical 13 days in October 06. This team has a huge payroll and they are two games over .500! If you can’t piss and moan over a team spending more than ever in their history and being thoroughly mediocre than what’s the point? This whole ‘happy to be here’ crud only works for opening bands and vice presidential candidates. You’re either in it to win it or why bother?

  255. As Joel in Seattle says about Nate. Exactly. No, I wasn’t at the game, but I heard the radio PBP, and Nate was clearly losing it in the 5th-6th.

    And hey – can we stop going all histrionic on each other? Todd Jones might be this or he might be that, but he’s not worth getting upset with each other about.

    There are relentless pessimists and relentless optimists here, and we all get reactionary sometimes. No biggie. There’s room.

  256. Forty, I probably do need the rest, but this is a big series.

    I’m in on the hug for Mike R if it will get him to lighten up on the complaining about complaining, which I’ve warned him about before.

    Reverse cowgirl action? I must be a rube, because I have no idea what that is. Sounds fun, though.

  257. Well, I’d say I’m a relentless realist, except when I’m overly pessimistic or rentlessly optimistic.

  258. Let me just make a last point. Living in NYC, I’m not exactly a Yankees fan, but you have to admire that inevitably there reaches a point in the season where they fricking bring it. Every year, injuries or no injuries, they just bring it. I just wish the Tigers would bring it one year rather than clown car their way through the last two months of 06, disappoint in 07, and piss away their talent in 08. If that makes be a negative type than that’s what I am.
    I don’t know if anyone has ever seen Steven Soderbergh’s ‘The Limey.’ There’s a scene where Terence Stamp, playing one of the great badasses in recent cinematic times, gets tossed out on a loading dock by some street toughs who were involved in murdering his daughter. He dusts himself off, reaches down into his shoe for his hidden pistol, stalks back up the dock and then shoots everyone. He leaves one dude alive to escape and tell everyone what he just saw.
    Then Stamp yells ‘Tell’em I’m coming. Tell’em I’m f–ing coming.’
    You don’t get the sense the Tigers have that in them.

  259. Too many comments here and the page takes too long to load. I’m closing this post and have created an overflow post.

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