Well, the Tigers go for their first hit since I took over responsibility for the game threads.
Tonight’s contest features JV versus James Shields. James Shields has not been good as of late. In his last 10 starts he’s allowed at least 3 runs in every start, and has only reached the seventh three times with a cool 5.61 ERA and 1.52 WHIP. Let’s hope that we earn a few more of the “Hs” from that equation. The Rays game day notes mention that Shields’ 9 losses are T-5th in the AL, “two off the league lead.” There’s some optimism for you.
On the other hand, a few of the Tigers hitters he’ll face are still figuring out how to get to the ballpark, so it should make for an interesting game. It was all doom and gloom in Motown this morning, but what do you expect when you get no-no’d by Matt Garza. JV is 7-1 in his last 9 starts. Checking the opposing starters over the next five days (Niemann, Price, Lester, Matsuzaka, Buchholz), there is little margin for error in JVs performance tonight.