9-3, 1st place, 2.5 games up on CWS
Unstoppable force, meet immovable object.
The first highly anticipated rematch of the 2011 ALCS begins today and continues through Sunday for a four game set. Sunday’s game will be the national game on TBS. (Tigers will also be featured next Sunday in NY.)
The Rangers, have been an unstoppable force so far, pummeling their opponents by averaging 5.75 runs per game while only allowing 2.5 per game. The Rangers lead the AL in every major offensive category, blasting 22 home runs during their torrid start. As if their modern day murderer’s row isn’t enough (Mike Napoli bats 7th most days), their pitching staff sports a 2.33 team ERA to go along with their 10-2 record.
The world’s only 6-5 Japanese/Iranian pitcher, Yu Darvish gets his 3rd start of the season tonight. It will be a while before anyone can reconcile his $100M price tag, but the early returns look good. He got shelled in his first inning of the season, but has only given up 2 runs in 10 innings since then. That said, he’s giving up a lot of hits and walking a lot, so the Tigers should have opportunities to score, and to hit into DPs.
The immovable force is our own Detroit Tigers, whom will not budge no matter how many quality starts from left handed pitchers the opposing teams throw at them. The Tigers won the last two in Kansas City despite being tied or behind in the 7th in both games and scoring only 10 runs in the series. The Tigers may not be putting up the numbers that the Rangers are, but they’re not winning by good fortune. The Tigers offense ranks in the middle of the AL and their pitching staff is posting a fantastic 3.08 ERA and 1.18 WHIP.
Looks like Fister may need more time, so perhaps that will help to relax Wilk tonight. Taking this series would really make a statement to the rest of the AL.
I gotta admin, I’m still a little frightened of Nelson Cruz.
Tomorrow is the 100th birthday of Tiger Stadium (woulda been). The Freep is asking for memories from readers to publish tomorrow. When I was a kid I loved being able to sit behind home plate, shouting, and hearing myself in the radio broadcast. I think the proximity to the field brought a special tint to Harwell’s broadcasts.
Pudge Rodriguez is hanging them up and will retire as a Ranger.
Jim Price is back tonight. Petry was good, Price is better. Glad you’re back Jim.
Pre-Game player of the game is Cabrera. He’s due.
Delmon Young DHs, Don Kelly gets the nod in left in tonights Inge/Rayburn less lineup. If the playoffs started tomorrow this is what I would expect the lineup to look like.
1. Jackson, CF
2. Boesch, RF
3. Cabrera, 3B
4. Fielder, 1B
5. Young, DH
6. Avila, C
7. Kelly, LF
8. Peralta, SS
9. Santiago, 2B