We all knew what it meant last night with Justin Verlander taking the mound following a Tiger loss, and he did not disappoint, becoming the first Tiger pitcher to record 21 wins since Jack Morris in 1986. It was also a milestone for Ol’ Smokey, as Jim Leyland notched his 500th win as a Tiger manager.
Today features the odd 4:10 start time, which means we don’t quite know what to expect. Is it a day game? A night game? Does it begin as a day game and end as a night game? This is relevant because Brad Penny takes the mound for Detroit.
Penny’s day game stats have gotten worse since we last visited them, so to update: Day ERA: 5.58, Night ERA 4.19, which makes Penny easily the worst day starter on the team (unless we count Turner’s one outing yesterday). Which is why Leyland throws him out there in the daytime more than any other pitcher (Day starts: Penny 17, Porcello 11, Scherzer 9, Verlander 8)–clearly, he’s due.
The Tiger hitters don’t seem to like the daytime much either–team BA/OPS for day games is .258 / .723, at night .278 / .769. Maybe they should work on scheduling fewer day games next season.
Player of the Pre-Game: Wilson Betemit
Wilson is the one Tiger starter with positive day game splits, hitting .323 (.848 OPS).
Today’s Return of Carlos Lineup: