Game 158: Rays at Tigers

PREGAME: The Tigers kick off a 4 game series against the Rays with an afternoon tilt. Scott Kazmir goes against Armando Galarraga and a patchwork lineup. The Tigers have lost 11 of 12 and 5 in a row at home. Here’s hoping that the best thing about today’s game isn’t the weather.

TBR @ DET, Thursday, September 25, 2008 Game Preview – Baseball-Reference.com

Game Time 1:05

82 Comments

  1. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 2:31 pm

    TIGERS UP 4-1 IN THE 5TH!

    If I really didn’t care this wouldn’t matter, wouldn’t make me feel good. But it does feel good. So I must still care.

    Go Tigers.

  2. Vince in MN

    September 25, 2008 at 2:37 pm

    Santiago with two homeruns in one game, now THAT is surreal.

    The genius of Jim Leyland at work.

  3. Vince in MN

    September 25, 2008 at 2:40 pm

    Granderson pinch-hits for Hessman, who homered in his last at-bat.

    The genius of Jim Leyland at work.

  4. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 2:43 pm

    Why did Granderson pinch hit for Hessman? Please tell me, someone.

  5. Chris in Dallas

    September 25, 2008 at 2:47 pm

    I just got back from buying some canned goods. It looks like I’ll need to go back to the store for more, though. Ramon Ruth?

  6. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 2:48 pm

    Nice job to draw the walk, Joyce. Good call on the steal by Inge right before, too. Good show.

  7. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 2:50 pm

    Ah, Dusty Ryan grounds out to end threat and inning. Wanted those runs, man. We’re gonna need them.

  8. Vince in MN

    September 25, 2008 at 2:50 pm

    Inge now needs to go 0 for his next 9 (0 for 3 so far today) to get to .199 for the season. With three games to go, this is doable, but can he?

  9. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 2:52 pm

    Unless Hessman is injured – which I think would be a drag, laugh all you want – I’m guessing Granderson is in CF because there’s a lead to protect now.

  10. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 2:53 pm

    ROY vs. ROY!

  11. Vince in MN

    September 25, 2008 at 2:54 pm

    I’m guessing the Granderson for Hessman move was to get a favorable lefty versus righty matchup there for offensive purposes (you know how Leyland likes to play the percentages) and then they make the improved defensive switch in the 7th inning with Inge going to 3rd. Man, Leyland’s brain must be hurting today, he really working those neurons.

  12. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 2:54 pm

    Ouch. Longoria HR. I guess that settles ROY.

  13. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 2:56 pm

    I’m still thinking CG in CF over BI is the greater def upgrade over BI for MH at 3B, but I could be wrong. The lefty thing… seems a bit early to think about that, ahead no less.

  14. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 2:57 pm

    Settle down, Armando! You’re all we’ve got, damn it!

  15. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 2:59 pm

    SWEET! 4-6-3 DP! After 6 and a half, Tigs up 4-2.

    This is the Tigers WS. At least they have home field advantage. I mean “advantage.”

  16. Vince in MN

    September 25, 2008 at 3:00 pm

    This is the new and imroved Leyland. He doesn’t want to stink anymore, so he is showing that he can think ahead.

  17. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:00 pm

    Santiago singles. SS in 2009 is settled.

  18. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:04 pm

    Thames doubles, Santiago scores. 5-2 Tigs. Error by evil slugger Hinske as well.

  19. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:05 pm

    Chad Bradford looks very studious. He must be pounded and taught a lesson.

  20. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:06 pm

    Don’t you mean “stink ahead,” Vince? He doesn’t want to think, so he can stink ahead.

  21. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:09 pm

    Ordonez tries for the DP but is thwarted by 1B being open, Thames to 3rd, 2 out.

  22. Chris in Dallas

    September 25, 2008 at 3:09 pm

    This is clearly the greatest game in the history of baseball.

  23. Vince in MN

    September 25, 2008 at 3:10 pm

    No Loon, I’m serious. It’s all about the future now: the 7th inning, spring training, next season, and with the asked for extension, the season after that, and….

  24. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:11 pm

    Miraculously, Cabrera gets a sac fly with 2 out. This is even better than that error in the count in the, um, Angels game (A’s?).

  25. Vince in MN

    September 25, 2008 at 3:12 pm

    Cabrera has a legitimate shot at RBI and HR crowns, but Maggs looks to be out of it for BA champ.

  26. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:13 pm

    Down 1-2, Grandy jacks one! We’re not out of the woods if AG can’t go 9, though.

  27. Chris in Dallas

    September 25, 2008 at 3:14 pm

    Read on Buster Olney’s blog today about murmurs of a Dontrelle Willis (or possibly Nate Robertson) swap to Boston for Julio Lugo. Kinda made me throw up in my mouth a little.

  28. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:15 pm

    Despite being told clearly by all of us not to swing at that pitch, Raburn flies out to end the 7th. 7-2 Tigs.

  29. Tbone

    September 25, 2008 at 3:16 pm

    I’m with Chris in dallas. This is the greatest game ever. Please dear God send Battlestar out for the 8th…

  30. Dave BW

    September 25, 2008 at 3:16 pm

    Rod is talking about Granderson undressing Carlos Pena, wtf

  31. Vince in MN

    September 25, 2008 at 3:17 pm

    Julio Lugo – No. No. No.

  32. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:17 pm

    “This is clearly the greatest game in the history of baseball.”

    I can’t help but agree, Chris. All is forgiven, Tigers.

    Julio Lugo? FJM said he beat his wife up in a parking lot.

    Sorry, that’s really all I know about him.

  33. Dave BW

    September 25, 2008 at 3:18 pm

    Sean: He sucks. Now you know more.

  34. Dave BW

    September 25, 2008 at 3:19 pm

    Eric Hinske was once an AL rookie of the year. How depressing.

  35. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:20 pm

    1st and 3rd with none out. Please, Armando, hang in there, settle down AGAIN. I hate Eric Hinske and his reasonable goatee.

  36. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:22 pm

    Jason Bartlett, Rays MVP, flies out to Joyce. No run. Come on, AG. That’s it.

  37. Kathy

    September 25, 2008 at 3:23 pm

    As much as Julio Lugo pains me, the other two pain me more.

  38. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:24 pm

    B.J. Upton, the Rays’ other evil slugger, down on strikes! This is the greatest inning ever pitched, IMHO.

  39. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:27 pm

    Oh God. Zobrist HR again, this time for 3 runs. It’s slipping away already.

  40. Chris in Dallas

    September 25, 2008 at 3:27 pm

    I hate Hinske. He made that ridiculous catch against the Tigs last year when he was with Boston. The Schilling game. Rableo got rob-belo’d on that one. And he (Hinske) later hit a HR in a 4-2 Tigers loss. Yes, I hold grudges.

  41. Vince in MN

    September 25, 2008 at 3:27 pm

    Are we inching closer to Rodney Time?

  42. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:28 pm

    Oh, never mind. Rodney’s in. The lead is safe. Phew.

  43. Tbone

    September 25, 2008 at 3:28 pm

    Oof. Can we keep the Rays to 1 run over the next 4 outs?

  44. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:30 pm

    So Carlos Pena, presumably naked now, faces Fernado Rodney.

  45. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:32 pm

    It’s not easy to pitch to a naked man, but Fernando averts his eyes, pitches from memory, and… walks Pena. Always a good sign for FR.

  46. Vince in MN

    September 25, 2008 at 3:32 pm

    I hope Leyland has Farnsworth and Glover warming up.

  47. Chris in Dallas

    September 25, 2008 at 3:34 pm

    Through much painstaking research, I found Curt Schilling’s account of that dastardly Hinske catch from the Mouth’s blog ’38 pitches’:
    What happens next is a highlight play that I think we’ll be watching 15 years from now on every baseball highlight film ever made from this day forward. Rabelo takes a split for ball one and then hits a hanging 1-0 split hard and far down the right field line. My only hope when I saw the ball in mid flight was that it stayed in the park. When I realized it was going to I was hoping it would bounce into the stands. I never in a million years saw Eric catching that ball. By far one of the best catches anyone will ever make and in the end I think it was the play that won this game for us on the defensive side of the ball.

    Sorry for the length of that. I’m trying to keep my mind off of the Tigers blowing this game.

  48. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:35 pm

    Yes! Rodney Ks Longoria, a total piece of crap who also beat Julio Lugo’s wife in a parking lot, according to FJM. Longoria, I mean. Not sure about Rodney.

    7-5 Tigers after 7 and a half.

  49. Vince in MN

    September 25, 2008 at 3:38 pm

    Inge watch: 8

  50. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:41 pm

    Inge out, Matt joyce draws another walk. Ryan up, and the Tigers could really use some runs, you know? They ARE going to need them.

  51. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:43 pm

    Joyce caught stealing. I guess that’s aggressive baseball, I don’t know. I can’t fault it.

  52. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:44 pm

    Cool. Ryan walks, 2 outs. Big Ramon (Foreign Country Strong) at the plate.

  53. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:46 pm

    I coulda swore Ryan walked. Well, he’s out somehow. That’s it. All up to the bullpen now. If the Tigers lose this one, I’m boycotting the WHOLE REST of the season. Mark my words.

  54. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:47 pm

    What’s the IngeWatch, Vince? Countdown to 200 Ks?

  55. Dr Dre in Chicago

    September 25, 2008 at 3:49 pm

    Loon, completely unphased by the stigma of string posting…i love it.

  56. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:49 pm

    Rodney still in, Aybar lines out to Raburn by way of Rebar, says Babar.

  57. Chris in Dallas

    September 25, 2008 at 3:51 pm

    IngeWatch is the countdown to a sub-Mendoza BA. He needs to go 0-for-8 by the current math.

  58. Tbone

    September 25, 2008 at 3:52 pm

    It’s fitting given the discussion today that Hinske gets one more crack at this…

  59. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:52 pm

    Navarro singles. That’s no good.

    Rodney just blows Gabe Gross away! According to Gameday, which is always about 50 mph slow anyway, Rodney is hitting 98.

  60. Chris in Dallas

    September 25, 2008 at 3:52 pm

    BTW, the ‘Foreign Country Strong’ comment slayed me.

  61. Chris in Dallas

    September 25, 2008 at 3:53 pm

    My personal radar gun had Rodney hitting 173 mph on that last K.

    EDIT: The pitch was also his changeup.

  62. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:53 pm

    You may remember E. Hinske as one of the Infamous 11. You know, the homers off the bullpen since the break…

  63. Tbone

    September 25, 2008 at 3:55 pm

    Now we are really putting the heat on the Royals!

  64. Vince in MN

    September 25, 2008 at 3:56 pm

    Inge watch is countdown to .199. 8 more hitless ABs gets him there.

  65. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 3:57 pm

    Um… I think Rodney just struck out Hinske, too. Very impressive. Old Fernando impressive. His last changeup was 175 mph. They couldn’t tracck the fastball any more.

  66. Chris in Dallas

    September 25, 2008 at 3:58 pm

    The Tigers win the pennant! The Tigers win the pennant!

  67. Vince in MN

    September 25, 2008 at 4:00 pm

    Now if the Sox or Twins can just wrap the division up in the next couple of days, the Tigers won’t have to worry about losing 90 games.

  68. Vince in MN

    September 25, 2008 at 4:02 pm

    Rodney is now a lock for next year’s closer. If he could learn to throw the gyroball he would be completely unhittable.

  69. Tbone

    September 25, 2008 at 4:09 pm

    I think JL should run Battlestar out there again on Monday against the ChiSox on 4 days rest.

  70. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 4:12 pm

    Andre – I’m glad you love it, but what’s string posting, and what’s the stigma? I think I can agree that I’m unfazed by it in advance. :)

    Chris – I hadn’t seen your 173 mph change comment before I wrote mine, honest. That’s pretty funny. And to think that Foreign Country Strong only came out of a total PBP goof by me, not my first of the game, either.

    Thanks, Vince. .199. I think it’s gonna happen, to be honest. I don’t think Inge has a hit in the past week. Then again, law of averages and all that…

  71. Joey the K in Portland OR

    September 25, 2008 at 4:12 pm

    No clinching the AL East on our field!!! (well at least today…)

  72. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 4:14 pm

    “I think JL should run Battlestar out there again on Monday against the ChiSox on 4 days rest.”

    That would be fine with me, honest to cats.

  73. Dr Dre in Chicago

    September 25, 2008 at 4:16 pm

    Loon,

    I think I made the term up, it was describing your consecutive posts…

  74. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 4:17 pm

    I don’t think there’s any doubt that this was one of the classic ballgames of the past half century, at the very least. I also think it would be fun if Billfer would set up a special “Hyperbole” thread for us.

  75. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 4:21 pm

    Dre

    Aha. Well, you know, I haven’t been contributing to game threads much for a while, and I kind of feel guilty about it. A day game and a reasonably calm work day allow it, so I kind of go nuts with it, especially when the thread starts out like today, with no comments at all till the 5th. I honestly thought I might be the only one following the game, and every game deserves some comment, so I stepped forward.

  76. Smoking Loon

    September 25, 2008 at 4:25 pm

    Now I see your earlier post on Inge and .199, Vince. Sorry.

    You gotta hand it to JL. Granderson paid off. I’ll never question him again for the rest of the day.

  77. Coleman

    September 25, 2008 at 7:59 pm

    Vince in MN: “Inge watch is countdown to .199. 8 more hitless ABs gets him there.”

    I would have said yesterday it’s undoable. But knowing how he struggles to repress his inner Babe Ruth, which manifests itself as an outer Rob Deer, on his off days, and knowing he watched Santiago hit two out today, not to mention all the other balls sailing the fences…well there’s only so much repressing one can do what with the fatigue that wears on one by this point in the season.

    So, yeah, it’s a doable…

  78. Coleman

    September 25, 2008 at 8:31 pm

    At the same time Inge is still best on the Tigers at getting a run home from 3rd base with < 2 outs, with 16 RBI in 14 AB (1.143).

    It’s admittedly a small sample size, so I checked career numbers, and Inge has a very good .910 RBI/AB. Miguel Cabrera’s career average? .867.

    So with a runner on 3rd and < 2 out, who would you want at the plate, Inge or Cabrera? The numbers say the best answer is Inge.

    And yet he struggles to hit .200

    It’s these kind of oddities that make Inge interesting.

  79. David

    September 25, 2008 at 9:40 pm

    And yet Inge is the best defensive infielder the Tigers have ever had

    You dont throw away something like that

  80. Dave BW

    September 25, 2008 at 9:48 pm

    If the Tigers keep playing Inge at third, I don’t care what average he hits for — he’s a blast to watch.

  81. Vince in MN

    September 25, 2008 at 10:24 pm

    Coleman,

    how many AB with a runner on 3rd (or alternatively/addtionally RISP) and < than 2 outs has Inge had in his career compared to all other situations?

  82. Ryan

    September 26, 2008 at 9:09 am

    David – I wouldn’t be so quick to lift Inge’s D over Aurelio Rodriguez’s or sweet Lou’s.