Game 2012.125: Angels at Tigers

The Tigers are fresh off of a sweep of the Blue Jays, which, despite some underwhelming offense, ended in exciting fashion.

And a game ball goes to…Jim Leyland. Not only did he replace Crazy-Legs Young with pinch-runner Quintin Berry, but he actually sent him! and that extra base won the game.  And how much fun is it to watch Berry on the base paths! His enthusiasm really brightened a rather dreary offensive performance.  He may not be the fastest Tiger I’ve ever watched (think I’d have to go with Gary Pettis there), but he is at the top of the list of most fun to watch run.

The Tigers try to keep the streak going against the redundantly named Los Angles Angels, who send old Tiger nemesis Zach Greinke to the mound. Greinke has had a rough go of it in Los Angeles, and joins trade comrades Anibal Sanchez and Ryan Dempster as the subject of  this study of the trio’s difficulty in adjusting to the AL (which is an odd way to frame it for Greinke, who has spent 80% of his career in the AL).

At any rate, Greinke has been 1-2, 6.19 with a 1.59 WHIP since joining the Angels. He has a history of being tough on Detroit though (career 11-6, 2.84). Omar Infante has had especially a hard time of it–a .190 OBP in 22 PAs. Even Miguel Cabrera has only put up a measly .619 OPS against Greinke over 30 PAs, with an unusually high strikeout rate (9). It will be interesting to see which Greinke trend prevails today.

Rick Porcello has struggled his last 2 starts (9 runs in 12 innings), but gets to face an Angel lineup missing Albert Pujols.

The Tiger lineup does have Miguel Cabrera, although he has been shifted to DH to lighten the load on his sore ankle.  Ramon takes over the hot corner, and Boesch is back in the lineup because Leyland liked how Boesch matched up with Greinke.  Just kidding. It’s because “I’m going to play Boesch. I’m playing Boesch for sure. He sat long enough. He’s been a good teammate. He’s pulling for everybody.” Apparently he sat so long that he is now due to bat 5th.

Meanwhile in Toledo, Ryan Raburn homers again…

Stat of the Day: Catch this:  Gerald Laird is hitting .300 career vs Greinke (20 PAs). Alex Avila says I can top that! at .429.

Today’s Player of the Pre-game: Brennan Boesch.  He is pulling for everybody! Hopefully he pulls one in the gap.

Todays Day-to-Day DH Lineup:

  1. Austin Jackson CF
  2. Omar Infante 2B
  3. Miguel Cabrera DH
  4. Prince Fielder 1B
  5. Brennan Boesch RF
  6. Delmon Young LF
  7. Jhonny Peralta SS
  8. Alex Avila C
  9. Ramon Santiago 3B

36 thoughts on “Game 2012.125: Angels at Tigers”

  1. I hope the circus doesn’t come to town with DY in left field ….. I would be a little more relieved both offensively and defensively if Q were in left.

    1. Good Clown Show potential out there tonight for sure. Hopefully Porcello has his groundball pitches working and not too many of them get to the OF.

    1. and Boesch: .252/.284/.412/.695

      Young looks like the odd man by a hair out to me. But I guess Leyland has a gut feeling tonight.

        1. And Young is in because he’s…………….. exactly why is Young in? To be fair, JL probably couldn’t decide which one to sit, so he penciled them both in.

          1. Young is in because he’s the Every Day DH. Cabrera is DH today because of his ankle, robbing DY of his Every Day DH job, so it would be unfair not to give him the LF job.

  2. ok boys, it’s crunch time. after this series with the Angels, the Tigers have 3 games out in LA v the Angels……and 3 games in Detroit v Oakland [not necessarily in chronological order]. all the rest are v Central teams [9 v KC, 7 v WSox, 6 v Cleve, 6 v Minn]. the time for farting around is through; gotta make a move and do it now……and win v our own division…..

    1. If you include that 50+ game run early in the season, they have been in hibernation a good part of the year.

  3. Poor execution of routine plays is one reason why we won’t make it to post-season play. You can’t give teams extra outs.

  4. 11 pitches by Villarreal – all strikes!

    If AlAl comes back as his old self and Benoit returns, our BP will be looking pretty good. Jettisoning Valverde, we could probably even dispense with signing another closer.

  5. Greinke continues to own the Tigers…not that surprizing after all the crappy pitchers that shut the Tigers down

  6. Looking ahead to next year:

    The Expendables (absolutely must go):
    Valverde, Coke, Young, Boesch, Kelly, Raburn, Leyland, McClendon, Lamont.

    Santiago, Baker, Porcello (if they can get something in a trade), Sanchez, Laird (someone who could spell Avila more often would be nice), the rest of the coaching staff.

    They need a couple of RH OF bats (could be platoon types), and otherwise a completely new bench, maybe another starter or two (depth in Toledo).

    1. The Expendables: Boesch, Raburn, Kelly, Young, Valverde, Sanchez, and Schlereth. Leyland tops this list for about three years running for me. He is absolutely maddening to watch manage. His staff can go out the door with him. I can’t think of one Tiger coach that doesn’t deserve the broom besides Brookens.

      I added a guy like Schlereth who I fear may still be in the Tiger’s plans along with Sanchez who doesn’t deserve a return to the club based on his performance thus far. Better to swallow the bitter pill of letting Sanchez walk versus compounding the problem by giving him a three or four year deal. I think we’d be better off with a guy like Smyly in the ’13 rotation over Sanchez if truth be told. Sanchez was a terrible move by DD, I still am pining for Shields although I am not clear on what TB was asking for him but I wince every time I think that we could have had him for the same price that we payed for Infante and Sanchez.

      I think Papa Grande is just about at the end of his rope as a bonafide closer and would not be surprised to see him as a seventh or 8th inning guy going forward on some sub.500 team in 2013. He has lost a little off of his fastball and being that he only has two pitches he can’t afford to lose any velocity of his fastball and still hope to be an effective closer.

      Meh: Coke (been brutal as of late but I don’t think that he is a lost cause), Baker, Laird, and Porcello. Porcello gives up way too may hits, but as fourth starters go he is OK. The problem is that we don’t have anybody better in the minors to take his spot. I’m OK with bringing Porcello back as a 4th starter and developing Smyly as the 5th starter next year.

      Opening Day roster for 2013:
      Starters: Verlander, Scherzer, Fister, Porcello, Smyly.
      Relievers: Benoit, Villareal, Albuquerque, Coke, Below, Rondon.
      Infielders: Cabrera, Fielder, Infante, Peralta, Santiago, Baker.
      DH: Martinez
      Catchers: Avila, Laird (I’d take a backup like Mathis over Laird if he is not signed past this year with TOR).
      Outfielders: Jackson, Dirks, Berry, free agent to be signed later, Boesch.

      Torri Hunter of LAA is available and a guy that I’d love to have in RF next year for us. Of course Hamilton is available but I can’t see the Tigers breaking the bank to bring him in, but his signing would make us immediate AL favorites. The other interesting name is B.J Upton who has never lived up to his offensive potential, but would be a huge defensive upgrade to an outfield that could use it. I wouldn’t be sad to have Upton in RF, Jackson in CF, and Dirks in LF in the every day lineup next summer. Carrying Boesch and Berry as reserves that could play in spot duty would be just fine by me.

      Outside of those three the pickings are pretty slim in terms of free agent outfielders, so don’t be surprised to see Delmon Young re-signed by the Tigers. I also wouldn’t be surprised to see Boesch return as he is under club control and the aforementioned dry market for free agent outfielders.

      1. I’d completely forgotten about Schlereth. Because of the injury I can see giving him another shot, but certainly no guarantee to start the season on Tigers; they have more LH relievers than they know what to do with anyway. I’d actually like to see them give Wilks a serious look, who has been incredibly effective at Toledo. With Smily recovering from an injury, I am surprised (well, not really – I’m guessing he is in the Leyland doghouse) he was passed over to replace Fister.

        Hunter would be nice for a year, but more than that and he gets in the way of Castellanos. He’ll probably resign with LAA though. You are probably correct about Boesch, but I wouldn’t mind them trading him for a similar type RH batting outfielder simply because since Dirks and Berry are weak vs LH pitching, having another LH bat as a reserve OF is too many. And I would definitely keep Dirks and Berry over Boesch.

        Peralta has been a disappointment this year, but what other SS is put there to replace him? If we have anybody in the minors they are probably two years away, so we may have to hang on to JP, but he certainly doesn’t belong any higher than 7th the order.

        I thought Mathis signed an extension, but I may be thinking of someone else. I would actually like to see a backup catcher (RH of course) who could play another position as well (either OF/3B would be nice) giving more lineup flexibility.

        I see you have proposed an 11-man staff with 14 position players. With a starting rotation that generally goes deep into games, I am fine with that, but a 6-man bullpen is almost unheard of now days. Management likes to play the Toledo Shuffle, so maybe it doesn’t make any difference anyway. However, The Toldeo Shuffle strategy is only going to be effective if they can beef up the minors, and that in itself could be a challenge this offseason since they have traded so much of it away in the last year or so. They haven’t been very successful at signing veterans to minor league contracts and then either promoting or trading them, so I don’t expect much there. It seems there are glaring holes in the Tigers’ scouting and development above the prospect level which is pretty good.

        Since free agency is apparently slim pickings to fill their needs, and the minors are thin as well, trades from the 25-man roster may be the only way to go. That’s why I suggested Porcello and Boesch as potential candidates.

  7. 5-9 after winning yesterdays game will need a few days rest. They took today off going 2-17..0 runs..0.rbi..

  8. OK, time to air my latest beef with Ol’ Smoky. Correct me if I am wrong, but wasn’t he quoted as saying that he sat down last week with Jeff Jones and figured out the rotation for the rest of the year? If this is so, can anyone please explain why Verlander is pitching Wednesday night instead of on Tuesday night in KC? He would be on his normal four days of rest by going Tuesday, but more importantly he would then be lined up to pitch the series finale the following Sunday versus the ChiSox.

    Verlander would be on his usual four days of rest by pitching TUESDAY in KC, and then would get his next start on Sunday, September 2 at home versus the White Sox. Instead, if Leyland keeps his pitchers as they are listed on Verlander will pitch Wednesday in KC and MISS the entire series versus the team we are chasing for the AL Central division next weekend in Detroit. To do this he would only need to juggle Sanchez (who would get an extra day of rest by starting Wednesday instead of Tuesday in KC), and we get the added benefit of not having the gas can known as Sanchez facing the White Sox (you know those guys that we desperately need to beat when we go head to head with them). Does this make sense to anyone? Someone please tell me that has the wrong info and that JV is actually going on Tuesday and not Wednesday in KC, and more importantly getting his next start versus Chicago a week from Sunday. If Leyland doesn’t fix this it will be reason # 372 as to why he should be fired. This is so simple that surely Ol’ Smoky has adjusted the rotation……………..right???

    1. Chicago Tribune had a piece Thursday in which they speculated that Leyland would start JV on Tuesday. They see a Sale-JV matchup Sunday.

      If he doesn’t, well…I have no words. It seems the only option, given that we have 6 games left with CHW and you can’t afford to have our ace miss a possible chance to pick up a game.

  9. Verlander is slated for Tue. Detroit official webpage. Tue-sunday. Twice against ChiSox , once against Halos

    1. Getting back to my Verlander point from a few nights ago, thanks to jkl for pointing out that is wrong (shocker!) and that Ol’ Smoky is using JV Tuesday in KC on his normal four days of rest. I was having an absolute fit when espn was listing JV as the Wednesday starter and Sanchez as the Tuesday starter (which would have been correct based on who’s turn it was to pitch those respective games) . I couldn’t believe what I was reading, but then again nothing surprises me any longer when it comes to Ol’ Smoky and lineups/pitching rotations.

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