Game 2011.124: Indians at Tigers

Tonight the Tigers begin the first of three remaining 3-game series against the Cleveland Indians, and by Sunday evening the standings in the Central division could look very different. With the Indians only 1 1/2 games back and the White Sox only 4, by the end of the weekend Cleveland could be in first–or in third.

Even Baseball Tonight’s video feature today is a Tigers-Indians series preview. The short version: why isn’t Justin pitching?

Series matchups:

  • Game 1 Fri 7:05  Josh Tomlin (12-5, 3.97)  vs Max Scherzer (12-7, 4.37)
  • Game 2 Sat 7:05 David Huff (1-1, 0.51) vs Doug Fister (1-1, 6.14 with DET)
  • Game 3 Sun 1:05 Ubaldo Jimenez (1-0, 4.58 with CLE) vs Rick Porcello (11-8, 4.98)
  • Not pitching:  Justin Masterson (10-7, 2.71) vs Justin Verlander (18-5, 2.31)

While we clearly win the matchup of the not-pitching guys, the Indians look to have a bit of an edge overall in the series.

In tonight’s battle of the 2nd-bests, Max Scherzer will try to avoid having an inning like the 2nd inning of his last start, where he gave up 5 runs, but then settled down and pulled out a 6-5 victory, reaching Verlander-like fastball velocity in his last inning.

Tomlin has put together better numbers than Scherzer, and is coming off of a 3-1 victory over Minnesota in his last start.

The AccuScore Projections say Cleveland should take this one (although it’s a close 52-48% margin).  The ESPN fan poll currently has the Tigers with a 77.5% favoritism.  Are you with the computer simulation or with the fans?

Player of the Pre-game:  Alex Avila

Alex’s bat is still hot–over the last two weeks he leads the Tigers in BA, OBP, and OPS (.405/.542/1.082), keeps the 6th spot in the lineup, and the backstop warrior finally had a day off.

Today’s Central-Leading Lineup:

  1. Austin Jackson CF
  2. Brennan Boesch RF
  3. Delmon Young LF
  4. Miguel Cabrera 1B
  5. Victor Martinez DH
  6. Alex Avila C
  7. Jhonny Peralta SS
  8. Wilson Betemit 3B
  9. Ryan Raburn 2B


  1. TSE

    August 19, 2011 at 7:28 pm

    I wonder what Peralta thinks about batting 7th in the lineup. He has performed worthy to be batting higher, and batting lower can potentially cost him money in the long run. AJ has rec’d 12.5% more PAs this year as the result of being a less powerful hitter, that’s not really fair lol.

    • Coleman

      August 19, 2011 at 7:49 pm

      On the other hand, Peralta is having a career-best year, batting 6th-7th…so I can also understand being hesitant to mess with what’s working (Jackson batting 1st however: not working. Mess with it already!)

      • TSE

        August 19, 2011 at 7:55 pm

        Yeah but I doubt that Peralta would think in his mind that he will be successful batting 6th or 7th and not so if he’s batting 3rd. What’s “working” for the team and what “works” for Peralta’s personal best interests and what he is personally entitled to are 2 different things. Perhaps Peralta thinks that batting 3rd is best for both him and the team. So I’m just curious how Peralta would analyze that question.

        • kathy

          August 19, 2011 at 8:11 pm

          He’s a team guy. Jhonny doesn’t make waves except with his bat.

          • TSE

            August 19, 2011 at 8:14 pm

            Well he’s a team guy by appearances, but we don’t know how he truly feels in his mind or what he may say privately to others.

            • Coleman

              August 19, 2011 at 8:18 pm

              I looked into his eyes and can tell he tells the truth

            • kathy

              August 19, 2011 at 8:30 pm

              They probably all think he should bat higher in the order. That would only be logical and give the team a better chance to win.

              • Coleman

                August 19, 2011 at 8:42 pm

                For me the big questions aren’t where should Peralta, Avila, etc bat, it’s who should bat first. Because I just don’t think it’s Jackson. But who?? I’ll go a bit outside the box here: Delmon Young.

              • TSE

                August 19, 2011 at 8:45 pm

                AJ needs as much practice as he can get. He has a long future ahead of him and I’m more concerned about the next 10 years than I am with this year.

  2. Coleman

    August 19, 2011 at 8:20 pm

    This might as well be Justin vs Justin: the #2s are showing up tonight

  3. Coleman

    August 19, 2011 at 8:45 pm

    AJax Jacks one! Do I take back what I’ve been saying? No. He could easily do the same batting 8th

  4. Coleman

    August 19, 2011 at 8:47 pm

    Hey, where is everyone anyway? Huge series, and…oh wait, Friday night! y’all enjoy your evenings!

  5. Vince in MN

    August 19, 2011 at 8:51 pm

    Raburn and Jackson – what a one-two punch! Or, more correctly, a nine-one punch. Best though, in the future, if it would be an eight-nine punch.

    • Coleman

      August 19, 2011 at 8:53 pm

      So true. So, what do you think of the Delmon Young leadoff bit?

      • kathy

        August 19, 2011 at 9:02 pm

        Well, ESPN sure doesn’t think he should be batting third or in the top of the order. I don’t know enough about Delmon and/or his stats. Don’t know where he has usually hit in the order, just don’t know would be my answer.

        • kathy

          August 19, 2011 at 9:03 pm

          Let’s pay more attention to the game.

      • Vince in MN

        August 19, 2011 at 9:11 pm

        Noooooooooo! OBP too low – definitely a lower part of the order guy. But since the EM like low OBP guys in the top 3rd, he seems to fit in well at No. 3, yes? Also it ensures that Cabrera gets to lead off a lot of innings.

  6. Stormin Norman$

    August 19, 2011 at 9:05 pm

    the home plate ump f-d Scherzer out of 7 innings of shoutout ball

  7. Vince in MN

    August 19, 2011 at 9:07 pm

    I hope we haven’t reached the part of the game where Leyland leaves the starter in too long.

    • Stormin Norman$

      August 19, 2011 at 9:09 pm

      i’d have pulled him, but Scherzer deserved to finish that inning… and he did. Let’s hope Benoit and Valverde do their jobs

      • Vince in MN

        August 19, 2011 at 9:20 pm

        I dunno – 6Max with 129 pitches is kind of pushing it IMO.

  8. Stormin Norman$

    August 19, 2011 at 9:07 pm

    the guy has been calling a liberal strike zone all game, and he picks that inning, that pitch (and it wasn’t at the knees it was 6 inches above the knees) to tightn the strike zone.


    • TSE

      August 19, 2011 at 9:10 pm

      Yeah umpires suck, computers should have the jobs instead, and the umps can go to the unemployment line where they belong.

      • kathy

        August 19, 2011 at 9:14 pm

        No, they’d still need them.

        • TSE

          August 19, 2011 at 9:17 pm

          Not for the job task that is calling balls and strikes. Having them present is one thing, but having them take on the extra job responsibilities and the cash that goes with it is something I’m opposed to. They are overpaid in exchange for being unfair, incompetent, and inconsistent beyond acceptable levels in accordance with the rewards they receive = a flawed and inefficient system of baseball and competitive injustice.

          • kathy

            August 19, 2011 at 10:13 pm

            I agree that they have become more and more incompetent. Overpaid? C’mon, everyone in baseball GETS PAID. There’s lots of money to go around including the umpires.

            • TSE

              August 19, 2011 at 10:22 pm

              But there shouldn’t be that money to go around. It could go to other baseball investments that are worthwhile instead of the pockets of umpires that don’t do a good job. I’m firmly cemented into that belief. This is a disgusting distribution of money altogether.

              • kathy

                August 19, 2011 at 11:26 pm

                Sounds political to me. Don’t support them by attending the games, watching the sport or purchasing team memorabilia if you feel that way.

              • TSE

                August 19, 2011 at 11:39 pm

                Oh yeah indeed I try to limit my support as much as I can. Everything is a trade off and the game of baseball is too important to me to stay in tune with and to keep advancing my love and understanding of the game that it outweighs cutting ties with supporting the game altogether.

                I absolutely do not purchase Tigers memorabilia under any circumstances. I do attend games though. My father is 100% committed to a shared group ticket plan with his work buddies and he feels obligated to his work crew to participate. I have asked him every single year to consider bowing out to do the right thing, but keeping his work comrades happy is more important to him despite the fact that he agrees boycotting the Tigers makes sense. He’s the boss of many people and he doesn’t want to rock the boat at the place where he earns his living.

              • TSE

                August 19, 2011 at 11:47 pm

                Also, I have been downsizing my Tiger-related possessions. I have given away about 8 Tigers shirts in the last 1-2 years to a cousin of mine as hand me downs cause I won’t wear them, I recently sold a piece of Tiger Stadium memorabilia that I owned for several years, and I’m also looking to sell a ’68 ball signed by the team that I have had in my possession for over 20 years that I no longer want to have in my house. Trying to find a buyer for it.

              • Coleman

                August 20, 2011 at 5:28 pm

                It’s really not very logical to devalue the worth of memorabilia from the 1968 team based upon the management of the 2011 team.

              • TSE

                August 20, 2011 at 5:43 pm

                I’m not devaluing the worth, somebody offered me $500 for it and I’d rather have the money than the ball cause the ball is not worth anything to me personally, it’s just a stupid baseball with ink on it. But to me that hasn’t hit the full market price of the ball and I’m not selling the ball short of the market price out of bias against the team.

                And to some effect holding onto it indirectly supports the 2011 team. When people come over and see it on my mantle they get an impression of support of the Tigers and so a small percentage of what the ball is worth is today still spilling over to a indirect relationship with the franchise itself, and I don’t want to have any overlap. Even if I was happy with the team I would still be looking to sell the ball, I am trying to get rid of all material objects I have that I don’t have any use for, even stuff worth 5 bucks. I don’t want to be one of those people that is 90 years old like my grandmother that has a house full of 1000s of objects that serve no point, I like to live as lean as possible in material possessions, and so I’m presently down to only a very tiny number of objects that are worth hundreds of dollars or more that I have absolutely no functional use for, and the baseball is #1 of those objects at the present.

  9. Stormin Norman$

    August 19, 2011 at 9:11 pm

    REALLY needed that one AA

    • Stormin Norman$

      August 19, 2011 at 9:12 pm

      …and that one JP

      …speaking of leaving your starter in too long

  10. Vince in MN

    August 19, 2011 at 9:13 pm

    Well, that settles where in the lineup Peralta should bat.

  11. Vince in MN

    August 19, 2011 at 9:27 pm

    Benoit has been lights out since his blow up in Texas Aug 2.

    Speaking of Texas, they just put up 4 runs in the 4th vs the Dirty Hose, lead 4-3.

  12. judpma

    August 19, 2011 at 9:32 pm

    Huge game again for Max he has stepped up tonight!

  13. judpma

    August 19, 2011 at 9:49 pm

    Tigers 4
    Indians 0
    Joe West 1

  14. Kevin in Dallas (in DC for a wedding)

    August 20, 2011 at 3:36 pm

    Great game last night. Post of the game goes to kathy.

    TSE – if your ball is authenticated, why don’t we do a DTW auction and the proceeds can go to charity.

    • TSE

      August 20, 2011 at 5:38 pm

      It’s not authenticated, but also I wouldn’t give the proceeds to charity. The principle involved is that I feel like the Tigers owe me. Other people are satisfied and happy with the team and don’t see things the way I do, and I cannot speak for others but only for myself, and so I don’t know of any charity that would appropriately transfer the reparations into precise justice in this matter.

      Besides, I don’t like giving to charities in general because they are typically run very inefficiently and don’t make a good use of the money. There is a huge % that goes to waste, or for things I don’t agree with, such as administration and staff salaries (which aren’t justified since they don’t use the money correctly and they often take more than they should), promotional events etc. and too much of the money therefore does not go towards actually helping people or accomplishing important objectives for the betterment of others.

      That does not mean that I’m not charitable however, I consider myself to be amongst the most charitable people I know in spirit. I have plans for how to give back to the world before I depart it, and I look at my total assets as the best place for potential charity. I’m a very frugal person with the way that I live my life, I essentially have 90% of everything I could ever need for myself in a material sense, so for all intents and purposes at the age of 32, any additional money I come into just shores up my net worth and my power to give back through my long-term calculated plan to help society. Why am I typing all this in response to such a short question? Well for one you know I like long posts and it’s just my nature to give as complete of an answer as possible, and to simply say no and mislead others into generating improper and malformed opinions of me is not something that I like, so I have to explain everything.

      I know lots of people on the Internet interpret me as some kind of whacko in one sense or another, but I view myself through a unique light. I consider myself in a sense the modern version of a “Joan of Arc”-type character. If there is one person on the planet that has the know-how, the courage, the gumption, the fortitude, the logic and the character to be able to lead 6 billion people towards a better life tomorrow, I’m that guy, and that’s what I live for. My end game in life is to become uber-rich and use all of my money and power to grab the world by the horns and lead it into something better and something prosperous, beautiful and peaceful, so I look at my net worth as the best place for any extraneous funds, to me they are serving the best possible cause by being in my possession as opposed to another person or any charitable organization. If I were to find a charity that believes in my mission in a reasonably precise fashion then that would be a different story, but I have identified no such organization as of yet, and so I’m the best charity out there as all my funds in the short-term will just continue to build interest en route to the day that they go to work for the best possible cause of all Earthly matters. I don’t have any kids and there is a chance I may never, but if I did I would not leave my heirs the bulk of my fortune because that wouldn’t be right to me unless I was convinced they were qualified to carry the torch of utilizing the funds for that cause, so in the long-run I will be entering into activities and setting up my foundation to make the money work the way I envision that it needs to, and at present time I could still use an extra trillion dollars at least before I would run out of ways to implement that money towards my mission, so until then it’s onward and upward with building my wealth to help contribute towards the end game of my planned contribution to humanity.

      Does that answer your question? You guys that thought I was crazy before, how nuts do you think I am now? Lol 🙂