Tonight the Tigers look to stop a two-game home losing streak, after a memorable pitching collapse left them buried in yesterday’s game. After a Bad Penny beginning, which featured a heated shouting match between Penny and catcher Victor Martinez, (Penny says it was no big deal, just about the timing of the signs) the Tigers came back to pull within one run of the Angels.
Enter David Purcey. For the 3rd appearance in a row, he was completely unable to throw strikes, and was finally pulled mid-batter with a 2-0 count and the bases loaded. Phil Coke was called on to save the Tigers from this dire situation, but…not so much.
Although Purcey couldn’t find the strike zone, he at least won today’s Captain Obvious award. After the game Purcey said “I didn’t come in and do my job. I just didn’t get it done.”
The only pitcher who was any good yesterday was Chance Ruffin. After the game the Tigers sent Chance Ruffin back to Toledo, and recalled Daniel Schlereth. Nice job Chance; now get out of here (I do get the tactical reasons for the move: Chance probably wouldn’t be available the rest of the series anyway; they want a left-hander since Purcey won’t be available; they can’t send Purcey to the minors because he is out of options).
As far as any big changes, since the trade deadline is two days away: the Tigers are said to be still interested in Kuroda, but Kuroda is said to be very restrictive about which teams he would waive his no-trade clause for, and would be unlikely to approve a trade to Detroit or Cleveland.
The Tigers are rumored to be inquiring about Ubaldo Jimenez, but supposedly the Rockies would want Jacob Turner and Rick Porcello. Good luck with that one.
The very latest rumor has the Tigers–and the Indians–pursuing a deal with the Nationals for Jason Marquis. The number of rumors involving both clubs adds an extra element of intrigue to things: either team can simultaneously pick up some help, and prevent its rival from doing so.
Porcello will take the mound tonight against the Angels. Or he will pace the dugout while the tarp lies over the mound–rain is in the forecast. Porcello has won 4 consecutive starts, with a combined ERA of 3.33. And the cooler temperatures might help his sinker. On the other hand, his career ERA vs the Angels is a hefty 7.40.
The Tigers will be facing dreaded Rookie Pitcher Guy, this one named Tyler Chatwood (6-6, 3.64). He has had some command issues, so maybe he’ll get all Purcey tonight.
Today’s Player of the Pre-Game: Daniel Schlereth
Schlereth will likely see action in tonight’s game, with lefties Purcey and Coke both used yesterday, and Alburquerque still day-to-day with elbow inflammation. He was sent down to Toledo in the first place because he was having trouble finding the strike zone. We can’t afford for him to pull a Purcey.
Today’s Switchy Lineup: