Game 2011.85: Giants at Tigers

I chose to watch the alternate baseball reality version of yesterday’s game, where the Tigers were rained out in the 3rd inning.  No word so far on the makeup date.  I hear there was another version of the game played;  I hope I didn’t miss anything.

The Giants wield the interleague brooms today as they go for the sweep of the 3-game series, which concludes the both the homestand and the 2011 interleague schedule.

The matchup looks favorable for San Francisco. The surprising Ryan Vogelsong (6-1, 2.09) takes the mound for the Giants against the equally surprising–and not in a good way–Rick Porcello.  Kid Rick (6-6, 5.06) has allowed 18 runs in his last 11 innings, and concedes that he has hit a “bump in the road.”  Porcello attempts to smooth the bumps today, and keep the Tiger rotation from devolving into Verlander then Head For Cover.

Adam Wilk was recalled from Toledo to bolster the beleaguered bullpen. (The phrase beleaguered bullpen has been used so much for the Tigers this season that they might want to look into a trademark). To the surprise of no one, Villarreal was sent down.

In other news, the Tigers signed Adelin Santa, a 16-yr old Dominican 3rd baseman, known for his raw power and arm strength. In the meantime, Adam Everett is always available–he was just released by the Indians.

Oh, and by game time today the final results of the All-Star voting should be public.  Go Alex!

Update:  Alex Avila has been voted as the American League starting catcher for the All-Star game (fireworks). Miguel Cabrera, Jose Valverde, and Justin Verlander have also been named to the team.

Today’s Player of the Pre-Game:  Don Kelly

Yes, the Donkey is not in the lineup.  But after catching last night, Kelly has now played all 9 positions in the major leagues.  Today he takes over as manager.

Today’s Broom-busting Lineup:

  1. Andy Dirks CF
  2. Brennan Boesch LF
  3. Magglio Ordonez RF
  4. Miguel Cabrera 1B
  5. Victor Martinez DH
  6. Alex Avila C
  7. Ryan Raburn 2B
  8. Ramon Santiago SS
  9. Brandon Inge 3B


27 thoughts on “Game 2011.85: Giants at Tigers”

  1. “Miguel Cabrera looks like he would just as soon be a DH…he just doesn’t look all that interested over there at first.” –Giants announcer

    1. Staff ERA with
      Knapp – 4.41
      Jones – 3.00

      Truly a no brainer – they’re all aces now.

    2. Wow. Didn’t expect that. I figured Leyland would stand by his man and just say that Knapp was due. Heck, he torched Knapp faster than Raburn.

      1. I don’t know that it will have much impact at this point. It probably has more to do with the players than the coaches, but you can’t fire the players so the coach (or sometimes manager) is the one to take the fal in these sorts of situations. Also, remember that both DD’s and JL’s contracts are up this year, so there is most likely some CYA going on here, deflecting responsibility for any possible collapse (does any of this sound familiar?) as the season winds down. In other words, PANIC.

        By the way, with the Tigers offense producing fairly well, there has been no talk of canning Lloyd McClendon, even though Inge and Raburn have been stinking up the batters box all season. JL and LM go way back though, so even if Runs Per Game were down, it is likely that there would be no quick exit for the hitting coach like there was for Knapp who is recent addition to the coaching staff.

        1. I don’t know if you can call Knapp a recent addition. He’s had at least two full season at the helm and he’s been completely in charge of the development of guys like Porcello and Scherzer. The blame’s probably not all his, but given the way things have turned out so far, do you really feel comfortable placing Oliver and Turner in his hands too? Take away Verlander and the pitching staff has been pretty bad this year. Scherzer’s our #2 guy and he’s easily the worst pitcher to win 9 games by the All-Star break in some time.

          1. I don’t know that the ML pitching coach can be completely in charge of developing anybody. Once they get to the big show, yes, but while in the minors that would mainly seem to be the responsibility of the coaches at each level as they come up the chain. Knapp would only see guys like Oliver or Turner for brief stints during the season, and in ST.

            I don’t know what goes on in the system as a whole, but the Tigers minors hasn’t been rated very highly for many years, either hitting or pitching. Pitching has been better, but then they tend to trade many of those players for established veteran hitters fairly early on. That stategy isn’t necessarily a bad one (the players they trade for can be debated, but that is a different question) , but it does tend to keep our own stock of higher minor league pitching low.

            It’s hard to say how much impact Knapp had on Porcello’s development since Knapp was still with MN when RP was in the minors, and Scherzer was developed in the Arizona system.

            1. I was referring to the portion of a young player’s development that happens after he makes it to the majors. Knapp had a significant amount of time to work with two very talented young pitchers and the results have been mixed, at best.

              I’m sure there’s plenty of blame to go around, but it’s fair to say that Knapp hasn’t lived up to expectations. You won’t find any record of me calling for his head, but his direct superiors weren’t happy with his performance and I don’t see anything in the stat book that disagrees with them.

    Brad Penny said he heard the news from Knapp himself.

    “Bottom line is he got fired because of our performance,” said Penny, who earned his last win on June 5. “He wasn’t out there throwing pitches, and the inconsistencies we’ve had, other than Justin, are why he’s not going to be here anymore. For me, that’s tough. I wish it would have been different. He did everything he could for us and he always wanted the best for us. It’s tough.

    “We pitch bad and coaches get fired. We play bad and MANAGERS get fired. … Somebody’s gotta take the fall. In reality, we’re responsible for it.”

    “managers get fired”…Freudian slip or wishful thinking?

    BTW: every time Penny is quoted he says something insightful or intelligent

  3. MLive –

    “It’s a joint decision between Dave and myself,” Tigers manager Jim Leyland said. “It’s a bittersweet (thing). I think it’s the first time I’ve ever lost a coach during the season like that. It’s difficult, but that’s what it is.”

    OK, so Knapp has not been fired? …apparently according to JL he’s just “lost”. QUESTION for JL, what possibly could be “bittersweet” about firing one of your coaches?!

    Maybe its just me, but as Vince indicated above, this move seems straight out of the CYA handbook.

    1. OK, so Knapp has not been fired? …apparently according to JL he’s just “lost”. QUESTION for JL, what possibly could be “bittersweet” about firing one of your coaches?!

      It was probably DD’s decision and Leyland was probably ambivalent.

      1. “bittersweet” is something that is both pleasant and painful or regretful… i get the ‘painful/regretful’ part, i’m having trouble with the “pleasant” portion

        1. Haven’t you ever dumped a girlfriend? The “pleasant” part is the feeling of hope that your next relationship will be better.

          1. I’ve been dumped by girlfriends many times, and they always told me how “bittersweet” it was as they walked on out the door 😉

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