The Tigers have the brooms and the tarps handy, as they look to sweep the 3-game series with the Rays, weather permitting. Last night the Tigers pulled off the rare feat of overcoming both a subpar performance by Justin Verlander and a Tiger Clown Show.
This afternoon manning the broom is Bad Brad Penny, who is looking to overcome a subpar performance of his own, as his 5 walks led to 5 Pittsburgh runs. He will be faced by Andy Sonnanstine, who has transitioned from the bullpen, but is yet to make it past the 5th inning of any game. That and the fact that the Rays’ bullpen has been well-used this series bodes well for Brutus’ chances to wield the broom.
On a side note, reading a Rays blog it is clear that Rays fans really, really don’t like Kelly Shoppach. Laird was a fan favorite last season by comparison. Shoppach’s failure to block Boesch from scoring was seen as the main cause of the first loss in the series, and when he was later hit by a pitch one fan said, “good, he needs to get hit with a pitch every at bat for the rest of the season.” Ouch.
Today’s Player of the Pre-Game: Alex Avila
Alex was the hero in last night’s game, and gets another RHP to jump on today. And he is not Gerald Laird or Kelly Shoppach.
Today’s Back-to-Back Kelly Lineup: