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Game 2011 Playoffs.8: Rangers at Tigers

Here’s the thing about a walk-off Grand Slam.  It only counts as one win.  One win.  Same as a sacrifice fly, walk, HBP, bloop single, etc.  There’s no momentum in baseball.

In less than 9 hours, 42,000+ screaming, rabid, passionate Detroit Tigers fans are going to erupt when the Tigers charge out of the dugout and take the field.  They are going to cheer every Tiger, and boo every Ranger (well, maybe except for Ron Washington – I love watching that guy).   There’s no momentum in baseball.

I realize that everyone wants to jump on Lamont for not sending Santiago in the top of the 9th, but let’s not forget that this team won 95 games, largely on the shoulders of MVP candidate Miguel Cabrera, and VMart hit a cool .394 behind him with RISP.  I 100% agree with Lamont’s decision there.  Had Santiago been thrown out at home with Miguel Cabrera in the on-deck circle, Lamont would have never been able to walk out into public in Detroit again.

I’d like to mention that the 3-2-3 double play last night turned by Cabrera was gorgeous.  He had to make the swipe tag because it happened so fast that he could not get back to the bag.  That guy is going to earn a Gold Glove next season, and win one in 2013.

If you were to simplify the game into starting pitching, bullpen, and hitting, the Rangers have the Tigers beat in the last two, but the Tigers have the upper hand in starting pitching.  And there is no reason to doubt that Fister/Porcello/Verlander can’t bring home 3 Ws in 3 games.  It’s not a foregone conclusion, but the Tigers will be favored in each of the next 3.  And if the bats can hit at home, that Rangers bullpen may start to get overworked.

The first two games have been incredible matches between two teams who are about as close as they can be, with the Rangers’ bullpen granting the Rangers the upper-hand.  But in all honesty, the Tigers are really just a few swings away from a 2-0 lead.  They have stranded 22 runners on base through two games – and have gone 2-for-19 with runners in scoring position.  A few big hits over the next few nights and this thing looks totally different.  There’s no momentum in baseball.

(I’ll update with lineups later today)

Tonight’s Delmon-less Lineup

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

Posted by on October 11, 2011.

Categories: 2011 Season, Game Post, Playoffs

74 Responses

  1. Disagree completely on Lamont……ask a Rangers fan if they wanted him held up or sent? I would guess close to 100% would say held up.

    I was irate when they didn’t send him, and would have been 100% fine with getting thrown out at the plate. There are way too many things that have to happen absolutely perfectly to throw Santiago out at the plate there. The tag itself is going to be extremely difficult considering where the throw is coming from.

    I have seen Lamont get every slow Tigers runner thrown out at the plate in the last 2 years. For this to be the time for him to get passive, in a 2 out situation where the runner is going on contact is absolutely absurd.

    by steeser on Oct 11, 2011 at 10:02 am

  2. +1

    by Andrew in Toronto on Oct 11, 2011 at 10:03 am

  3. Well, then I’m glad Lamont didn’t add another one to his resume. Santiago would have been out, easily. The throw was already on its way before Santiago even reached third. Maybe he was slowing down to stop with Lamont holding him up, but at best he would have been a couple steps past third when the throw hit the relay man.

    by Andrew in Toronto on Oct 11, 2011 at 10:09 am

  4. (For the blog post, that is. Not for my own comment above!)

    by Andrew in Toronto on Oct 11, 2011 at 10:10 am

  5. Unfortunately the FOX coverage never showed where Ramon was during the hit so it is hard to say whether it was correct to send him or hold him. While the reality was that Santiago was held, our middle line up failed to score him. To me, that is more painful than Lamont making the hold call.

    by The Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 11, 2011 at 12:32 pm

  6. Hope this link works… Here’s video of that inning, which I think is exactly as it aired. Skip to the 1:10 mark.

    You can see Santiago arriving at 3rd as the throw comes into the infield.

    Anyway, I agree with you. Martinez needed the big hit there. A good portion of his season was built on a huge amount of RBIs he collected in bases-loaded situations. But he has failed in a lot of those recently.

    by Andrew in Toronto on Oct 11, 2011 at 1:55 pm

  7. Santiago should have been sent. They don’t show the entire sequence of Cruz fielding and throwing the ball in, and if they would have kept the camera on Cruz, you would have been able to see that he bobbles the ball. I know this because Cruz was interviewed after the game and admitted he bobbled the ball as he was trying to get it out of his glove. Santiago is rounding the bag as Cruz picks the ball up; he would have been well ahead of the third base bag by the time the ball hit the cut-off man.

    I was yelling at my TV to send him. Of course, he didn’t get sent. It seems like I’m always disagreeing with Lamont…

    by ouchudied on Oct 11, 2011 at 2:34 pm

  8. “With two outs, I’m expecting to score,” Santiago said. “But I got the stop sign early, so I know it hadn’t bounced around out there.”

    Texas Rangers right fielder Nelson Cruz, the game’s eventual hero with his 11th-inning grand slam, said he had bobbled it, but “Picked it up as quickly as I could.”

    http://espn.go.com/blog/dallas.....y-to-score

    by ouchudied on Oct 11, 2011 at 2:36 pm

  9. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I think the video I posted shows the play unedited. So, it sure likes Santiago was just arriving at 3rd when the ball was coming into the infield. Also seems like Joe Buck is saying the same thing as we see the throw coming in.

    I don’t know; maybe they re-edited it for the highlights. But it matches how I remember it.

    by Andrew in Toronto on Oct 11, 2011 at 3:45 pm

  10. If you go by where Santiago is when the ball gets into the infield, holding him seems like the right move. But the point some are making (and Santiago himself if you read his quote) is that he already had the stop sign and was slowing down heading into 3rd. It’s hard to tell where he would have been had he been given the go sign.

    by Coleman on Oct 11, 2011 at 3:50 pm

  11. Aretha Franklin will be singing the National Anthem (apparently Amber Grand was not available).

    And Joel Zumaya will be delivering the game ball; first pitch to be thrown by Darrell Evans (there should be a joke in there somewhere…)

    by Coleman on Oct 11, 2011 at 3:57 pm

  12. Ok, perhaps Santiago was late arriving at 3rd because Lamont had already showed him the stop sign. I can believe that.

    by Andrew in Toronto on Oct 11, 2011 at 4:03 pm

  13. I disagree a little bit about no momentum in baseball. I don’t think there is team momentum, but there is individual momentum; this is why we have slumps and streaks. Hopefully the change of venue will change the slumpmentum of Martinez, Avila, Jackson, et al.

    by Coleman on Oct 11, 2011 at 4:23 pm

  14. Coleman, I begged them not to let Darrell Evans not to throw out first pitch in 2006. http://www.slate.com/articles/.....right.html

    by stephen on Oct 11, 2011 at 5:57 pm

  15. Yeah, sorta disagree with the post. Tigers would be favored in all three with full compliment of batters. But you’re starting Dirks, Kelly, Santiago, Jackson, and a clearly hurt Avila. I’m not sure that lineup would be favored over the Mariners.

    by stephen on Oct 11, 2011 at 5:58 pm

  16. Sometimes, English baffles me.

    by stephen on Oct 11, 2011 at 6:04 pm

  17. Bodog’s line opened at -125 and now is at -135. 5dimes is at -125.

    by Kevin in Dallas on Oct 11, 2011 at 6:40 pm

  18. It’s The Fister Factor.

    Also, the Rangers aren’t quite the same away from Arlington.

    by Coleman on Oct 11, 2011 at 6:47 pm

  19. Thanks for all the good comments on my post. In the excitment of the hit, I didn’t recall the brief segment of Ramon running to third. However given all the cameras at the game, they never focused any of him running the bases, instead some cameras were focused on the dugout. FOX missed that play as far as I am concerned, and except for our good friends at Intentional Talk, nobody talks about that play.

    by Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 11, 2011 at 6:52 pm

  20. All Tigers have hit Lewis well, meanwhile Fister needs to watch Young, Beltrie, and Murphy. Again, as in the last three games the middle of the lineup needs to pull it weight for the Tigers to have a good night. Let’s hope the homefield advantage helps.

    by Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 11, 2011 at 6:55 pm

  21. PS….Coleman, I like your signature tag as my Dad and Brother were at Game 5 in ’68. I have my Dad’s ticket framed in my office; the ticket cost $8.00 which even a few years ago cost less than my daughter’s highschool fastpitch game. Meanwhile my brother still brings his Game 5 scorebook to reg season Tiger v. Ranger games in Arlington hoping to run into Al Kaline so he can get him to sign it. (He should of been in Arlington last night!) Go Tigers!

    by Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 11, 2011 at 7:02 pm

  22. I’m hoping it will be good luck for the comeback.

    by Coleman on Oct 11, 2011 at 7:38 pm

  23. AJ P. just did a good summary of the Santiago hold at 3rd. He said Lamont needed to send him.

    by Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 11, 2011 at 7:38 pm

  24. Lets jump on them early!

    by Joe on Oct 11, 2011 at 7:38 pm

  25. Does Ken Rosenthal look like Soupy Sales in profile?

    by Bernie in Toledo on Oct 11, 2011 at 7:42 pm

  26. And Joe Buck is Black Tooth!

    by Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 11, 2011 at 7:44 pm

  27. ok, good, limit the damage… gonna stay positive for this one! I annoyed myself with my negativity in game 2.

    by ensigntaiga on Oct 11, 2011 at 8:19 pm

  28. Or not.

    by Coleman on Oct 11, 2011 at 8:24 pm

  29. I think pretty much all teams are favored at home.

    by stephen on Oct 11, 2011 at 8:26 pm

  30. It would liven things up a bit if he would do The Mouse.

    by Coleman on Oct 11, 2011 at 8:33 pm

  31. It’s hard to tell if Avila is injured, exhausted, or has just completely forgotten how to hit

    by Coleman on Oct 11, 2011 at 8:46 pm

  32. Does there happen to be a very dark, menacing cloud over Comerica? I’m just wondering.

    by ouchudied on Oct 11, 2011 at 8:50 pm

  33. Plenty of game left!

    by Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 11, 2011 at 8:54 pm

  34. That was an odd-looking DP, but it worked

    by Coleman on Oct 11, 2011 at 8:54 pm

  35. Lets get some runs!

    by Joe on Oct 11, 2011 at 8:56 pm

  36. Tigers didn’t score until the 4th inning of game 2 ALDS which was their first win. Plenty of time.

    by Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:00 pm

  37. But that wasn’t against Cy Lewis

    by Coleman on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:10 pm

  38. Fister is being Fister, but the rest of the team is being Gerald Laird.

    Not my work, but I thought it was worthy enough to post here.

    by ouchudied on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:16 pm

  39. Victor!

    by Snyder on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:19 pm

  40. It’s the 4th inning!

    by Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:20 pm

  41. Yes! No!

    by Joe on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:21 pm

  42. Home run! Injury! Kill me now!

    by stephen on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:22 pm

  43. Hopefully VMart is ok

    by Joe on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:24 pm

  44. It never stopped Kirk Gibson!

    by Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:25 pm

  45. doesn’t look good.

    by kathy on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:29 pm

  46. So many cheap hits for Texas…

    by Snyder on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:32 pm

  47. I saw where he was on my TV if your talking about the replay on Fox. Dan and Jim are defending Gene, but no one else is on MLB Network or other players. Ramon easily would have scored.

    by kathy on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:33 pm

  48. The Tigers had 4 homers against Lewis last June in a 13-7 thumping. Meanwhile Porcello beat Harrison 8-1 in the next game at Arlington.

    by Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:35 pm

  49. It was on the pregame show between 7:30 and 8:00. Showed an overhead view of all players involved including Gene holding his arms up making Ramon stop. You could tell he didn’t want to. He would have scored.

    by kathy on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:38 pm

  50. I’m guessing that VMart is a decoy here.

    by Kevin in Dallas on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:42 pm

  51. Well, that was fascinating. Walking a guy who can’t swing the bat??? We’ll take it.

    C’mon Donkey.

    by Snyder on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:48 pm

  52. Ron Washington is not bright.

    by stephen on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:50 pm

  53. Question: If Santiago scores before that little “theatrics” maneuver by Beltre, does the run count?

    by T Smith on Oct 11, 2011 at 9:53 pm

  54. Was that Bob Seager that was hit by the bat?

    PERALTA!

    by Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 11, 2011 at 10:00 pm

  55. No. Run does not count because it is a force out.

    by Joe on Oct 11, 2011 at 10:09 pm

  56. AJAX!!

    by Joe on Oct 11, 2011 at 10:10 pm

  57. Do you think Beltrie will start wearing a shin guard?

    I am enjoying watching the guys to the right of home plate. They are having a great time so I hope they go home with a Tiger victory!

    Doug Fister, you are a gem and a blessing!

    by Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 11, 2011 at 10:23 pm

  58. You just knew the big man would not remain quiet for much longer. That was a moon shot. The look on the pitcher’s face (Yogi Whatever) was priceless

    MIGGY!!!

    by tbran in Troy on Oct 11, 2011 at 10:31 pm

  59. MIGGY!!

    by Joe on Oct 11, 2011 at 10:32 pm

  60. Migual Cabrera, you magnificant Venezualian!

    by Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 11, 2011 at 10:38 pm

  61. Miggy batting 3rd tonight. It only took JL 170 games to figure this out.

    by Vince in MN on Oct 11, 2011 at 10:40 pm

  62. Doug Fister is a stud.

    by Snyder on Oct 11, 2011 at 10:41 pm

  63. It is good to see Fister pitch well under the National limelight as he is making a name for himself (that we already knew).

    by Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 11, 2011 at 10:42 pm

  64. The Rangers can appreciate a good fisting.

    by ouchudied on Oct 11, 2011 at 10:44 pm

  65. Hmmm, I think AJax prooved the pundits wrong tonight!

    by Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 11, 2011 at 11:01 pm

  66. Ajax continues contributing to the team by not ruining the save situation.

    by Snyder on Oct 11, 2011 at 11:02 pm

  67. 52 coming up

    by BNDWGNFN56 on Oct 11, 2011 at 11:05 pm

  68. Rangers learn about the middle of the lineup not batting away from home!

    Well done Tigers!

    by Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 11, 2011 at 11:22 pm

  69. V-Mart sticking with the same theme: “The only way I don’t play tomorrow is if I wake up and I’m dead.” #Tigers

    http://twitter.com/#!/beckjason

    by ouchudied on Oct 12, 2011 at 9:12 am

  70. Congrats on the Miguel Cabrera comment re: his fielding. This guy works at his craft and the Tigers are benefitting big time. Cudos also to GM Dombrowski and Mr. Illich for signing him to a long term contract. Now on to game #4.

    Paul Muxworthy
    Fort Worth TX
    Home town Windsor, Ont.

    by J Paul Muxworthy on Oct 12, 2011 at 9:17 am

  71. Hear, Hear!

    by Dr. Detroit on Oct 12, 2011 at 9:57 am

  72. The team that wins Game 4 will win this series.

    Porcello will have to find another gear today, or the Tiger bats will have to show up in a big way.

    by StorminNorman$ on Oct 12, 2011 at 12:00 pm

  73. The only times Leyland has done it were days that Young couldn’t play.

    But today, for Game 4, we finally have a line-up where Cabrera is third, despite having Young available!

    Here it is:
    Jackson 8, Raburn 9, Cabrera 3, Martinez DH, Young 7, Avila 2, Peralta 6, Santiago 4, Inge 5. Porcello is pitching.

    by Andrew in Toronto on Oct 12, 2011 at 1:38 pm

  74. Today’s another step in Little Ricky Porcello becoming a man. He has already successfully met the last two playoff challenges with flying colors. BTW, I heard on XM MLB that Porcello was upset being moved from ALCS Game 2 to Game 4 and that such anger was successfully vented during ALCS Game 1. Perhaps he can continue to channel such into Game 4. If so, it will be a pivotal point in this series. Vent on Ricky!

    PS: Hey Paul…we stay at my brothers on Eagle Mt. Lake when we come over for the Tigers v. Ranger season series.

    by The Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi on Oct 12, 2011 at 2:40 pm

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