Game 2012.73: Tigers at Rangers

35-37, 3rd place, 3 games behind CWS.

I realize that runs were a luxury over the weekend, but the Pirates are now 23-13 at home with a 2.28 ERA and 1.07 WHIP, all of which are best in the bigs.

Quentin Berry’s 2 run home run yesterday was just the 22nd Tigers home run with runners on base this season, which is 13th in the AL. Only the Royals have hit less HR with runners on base this season. Let’s take a closer look at the solo HR phenomenon.

The Tigers have now hit 44 solo home runs this year out of 66 total. Yes, the 67% solo HR ratio is worst in the AL, but the average solo HR % in the AL this year is 59%, and the Yankees, Blue Jays, Angels and Rays all have solo HR percentages at 60% or greater. So we’re not too far from the mean. FYI – the average AL team HR so far is 77, with a median of 71. So we’re 11 home runs off of the average pace, or about one every 6-7 games. Since 59% of those would be solos, it’s really not that many runs.

In conclusion, solo HRs are not the problem.

Our BA with runners on is .277, which is 3rd in the AL, but our slugging with runners on dips to .406, 7th in the AL. And slugging overall is .408, 7th in the Al. This looks be be a much bigger problem – we hit for average, but we don’t hit for any power. Why not? Let’s look at the lineup:

1. Jackson is slugging over 100 points higher than his career average. He’s not the problem.

2. Berry is slugging .423, which is almost 100 points higher than his MiLB average. I don’t think he can keep this up.

3. Cabrera is down slightly (.524 from .554). Not a big deal, though his walks are way down (understandably considering Fielder), but he’s not taking advantage of the increases ABs. That’s a tiny contribution to the problem.

4.  Fielder is down to .493 from .536. This is a problem. Some of this may be park effects, we’ll have to take a deeper look soon.

5. Delmon is down to .384 from .424. This is a problem.

6. Peralta is down to .394 from .426. This is a problem.

7. Boesch is down to .360 from .419. This is a problem.

8. Avila is down to .396 from .444. This is a problem.

9. Santiago is down to .318 from .341. This is funny.

Rayburn is down to .245 from .436. Did you know that RR has more walks (9) than RBIs (8) or runs (8). He also has more Ks (42) than TB (35).

Every hitter from 3-9 is down this year in terms of power, and most of them by a substantial amount. I expect the Tigers to be very active in the Quentin/Thome market.


The Tigers begin a 67 game swing through Texas (3) and Tampa Bay (4), against two clubs who are a combined 15 games over .500 at home. The Rangers are 8-2 in their last 10 and have the league’s best record at 45-28; 17 games over .500. The slated Rangers pitchers are Grimm (a rookie), Darvish and Oswalt, the recent signing who looked spectacular in his first game back this season. The Tigers are countering with Porcello/TBDSmyly/TBDFister. This could be a long series. I’m worried about Porcello, nervous about Smyly, and cautiously optimistic about Fister.


A few notes:

Tigers are looking at Matt Garza (see ya Porcello?) and Jed Lowrie (to play 2B)
– The MLive Detroit Tigers iPhone app is worth a download (it’s free)

Tonight’s Lineup will be Posted Later:

1. Jackson, CF
2. Berry, LF
3. Cabrera, 3B
4. Fielder, 1B
5. Young, DH
6. Boesch, LF
7. Peralta, SS
8. Laird, C
9. Santiago, 2B

32 thoughts on “Game 2012.73: Tigers at Rangers”

  1. Excuse me. Isn’t this a 7 game swing, not 6? 4 with TB. The difference being this could be 7 losses for the Tigers instead of 6. Or 6 instead of 5 counting JV.

  2. Tonight’s game is for all those people who always say the Tigers will start hitting once the weather gets hotter.

  3. Fielder’s solo home runs are a problem–but one that will probably fix itself. Over his career he hits something like 1 HR per 23 AB with men on; this year he’s 1-for-143 or something (which means we’ve been “cheated” out of about 6 Multi-run homers).

    1. Which would get us to the league average.

      The guys in front of him have been on base plenty; he’ll come around. Hopefully when he does it won’t be too late.

    2. For a moment I thought you were going to say “cheated out of $219 million.” That’s what I get for jumping ahead.

      1. It’s worth a few million per year to watch him run the bases. It’s hard to get too upset at him when you see him legging out every ground out and pop up. He might be driving a semi, but he keeps the pedal to the metal.

  4. I wonder if Porcello remembers what happened the last time he pitched against the Rangers. I still
    have nightmares about that first inning.

  5. Not to take anything away from DET’s offense tonight, but Justin Grimm was pitching in AA ball a few weeks ago.

    1. prior to today, the reliever Kirkman had pitched 4 innings this year, given up 3 runs and 2 HR’s

      1. He’s been on their prospect watch list for a while. Still waiting to see if he can figure it out.

        1. Actually not a bad outing for Mr. Kirkman as he tries to figure it out. After going 5 innings and 82 pitches tonight, we will fortunately not have to see him again this series.

  6. 7 runs for our guys in the first of a 3 game set? I am growing concerned. What will they do for the next 4 games — offense wise?

    1. Well there you go–after the game Porcello credited the hot weather for his sinker being so good.

  7. HUGE K of Napoli there… Porcello picked a great game to find his schtuff… impressive!

    1. two weeks in Toledo might help him get some confidence back, and maybe help him relocate the strike zone.

      1. Even longer if they make a deal (that doesn’t include him) for an outfielder that can hit.

  8. Got a very good 6 inning outing from Porcello, which is probably more than one should expect.

    1. Two runs off of pitchers not named BP Grimm. That 5-run 1st inning was an abberation and probably won’t happen again for a while. The 5-9 spots will continue to remain Death Valley until they make a deal and Cabrera/Fielder are not going to knock in four runs every game.

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