PREGAME: Nothing like an afternoon game after a 16 inning bout, but the Tigers play at 4p on the 4th on Fox Saturday Baseball. Happy 4th of July to everyone as Edwin Jackson matches up with Francisco Liriano. Both managers will look to these gentleman to provide some innings with both bullpen’s taxed. The Tigers at least have everyone except Joel Zumaya and Freddy Dolsi available, not sure about the Twins situation.
Liriano still hasn’t put things together since his Tommy John surgery. He’s fanning 8 per 9 innings, but he has 42 walks and 12 homers in 89.2 innings. He faced the Tigers earlier in the year though and went 7.1 innings in his best start (Game Score 68) of the season.
Jackson had fought his control a little bit in June before turning in a 7 inning, no walk performance against Houston. Jackson has only gone past 100 pitches once in his last 4 starts so Jim might lean on him a bit today.
POSTGAME: The first 2 games of this series have lived up to the hype. But the Tigers only came out on top once. Sadly I don’t know what was the bigger surprise yesterday, the offensive outburst of Magglio Ordonez or the offensive outburst of Nick Punto.
The Ordonez homer was particularly impressive, because unlike his homer against the Cubs on a hanger, he drilled a fastball over 400 feet to the pull field. Dumb luck or a reason to be encouraged? Don’t get me wrong, I’m thrilled for Maggs and hope it is a sign of things to come, but a little bit of skepticisim is warranted as well.
Edwin Jackson was bit by walks again, and too often he’d get ahead 0-2 and then nibble his way to a 6 pitch at-bat. Either he wasn’t as aggressive as he usually is, or he just flat out didn’t have the command.
Brandon Inge and Curtis Granderson both fanned 3 times today. Blech.