Game 2011.61: Tigers at Rangers

More hits than Lady Gaga.  More hits than, um, some fighter in some fight [look this up later].  More hits than…oh, nevermind.

The Tigers had 20 hits yesterday.  That is more hits than Magglio Ordonez has this season. They have 38 hits already in the first 2 games of the series.  That is more hits than Brandon Inge has this season.

And this isn’t against just anybody:  Texas had only given up 40 hits in their last two series combined (7 games);  Harrison, who gave up the bulk of the 20 hits, hadn’t given up a run in 16 innings.  This is not to say the Tigers are hitting good of course; they are hitting well.

So the Tigers head into tonight with a chance to convincingly sweep a first-place team on the road (on the other hand:  see today’s pitching matchup).

Even Raburn is hitting.  And, dare I say, Raburn is a big part of the recent Tiger surge.  Here is the thing:  as much as Raburn’s slump has been driving us crazy, how do you think it feels to the rest of the team, not to mention Raburn himself?  How do you think it must feel feeling like you have a lineup of 8 hitters and 1 black K? So when Raburn hit his grand slam against the White Sox, the smiles all around were mostly about the 4 runs, but also, I think, a huge weight was lifted from Raburn and the rest of the team.

In fact, Raburn has a 7-game hitting streak going.  The Tigers are 6-1 in that time.  Even a minimally contributing Raburn is going to make a huge difference to the team; at any rate, at least for the moment, he has rekindled the idea that when he is at bat maybe, just maybe, he will do something.

Phil Coke returns to the lineup and the mound tonight.  He faces the 6-0 Alexi Ogando (2.20), so he has his work cut out for him.  Or, in the charming words of Ol’ Smokey, “he is pitching in the heat against a guy who is 6-0…so, good luck, Coke.”

With Freakyfoot Phil back, Omir Santos goes back to the mud (thanks for the visit, hope you didn’t unpack).  I had assumed the move would be to send Wilk back now, and Santos back when Ordonez returns (latest intelligence says Monday at the earliest).  But Scherzer’s troubles meant Furbish was used up Monday, and Purcey was used Tuesday, so there is a lefty deficit in the bullpen.  I’m guessing this is plan B, and Wilk is the lefty-du-jour for tonight’s game, and will be swapped for Ordonez.

There is still the question of who goes when Inge returns, but it seems unlikely he will really be back anytime soon.

Today’s Player of the Pre-Game:  Brennan Boesch

Keep the Boesch baesching going!

Today’s Lucky Lefty Lineup:

  1. Austin Jackson CF
  2. Don Kelly 3B
  3. Brennan Boesch RF
  4. Miguel Cabrera 1B
  5. Victor Martinez C
  6. Andy Dirks LF
  7. Jhonny Peralta SS
  8. Alex Avila DH
  9. Ramon Santiago 2B


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