Detroit Tigers, 42-42, 4 1/2 games behind Chicago.
Today the Tigers have a chance to win 4 in a row, which they last did when their starting second baseman was named Brandon Inge (April 15-18), and would tie their longest winning streak of the season. Indicators are positive: the April 4-game winning streak was also against the Royals.
The Tigers will send Doug “Five-Inning” Fister out to the mound, who seems to have misplaced his fastball velocity when he returned from the DL. The Royals counter with their lefty-du-jour, sometimes troublesome Bruce Chen (3-1, 3.00 in his last 4 vs. Detroit).
The player of the game last night was Drew Smyly, who once again struggled after the 4th inning, but pulled it together, clowns be damned. And what a first 4 innings those were: Smyly struck out 9 batters, and only gave up 2 singles and no walks. The Royals seemed to have no idea what he was throwing. Was it a new pitch?
Or maybe he was just trying to impress Kate Upton. Yes, apparently Miss Upton has jumped on the Tiger bandwagon now that they are a .500 club. Her appearance at Comerica last night set off a Twitter firestorm.
Personally, I have more important things to worry about. Like these 4:00 starts. When they do day/night game splits, they count as day games. But don’t you think there are players who struggle in early day games, but do perfectly fine in 4:00 games? Should there be a 3rd category in the splits? Who has time for supermodel gossip when there are issues like this at hand?
Stat of the Day: The Tigers have attempted 41 stolen bases this season (33 successful), the lowest number of attempts in all of MLB.
Today’s Player of the Pre-game: Gerald Laird. The Royals like to run, and like to get caught–22 times in 75 attempts. Laird obliges, and also nails Prince Fielder with a pickoff throw as retribution for the black eye Fielder gave him.
Today’s Winning Record Lineup: