Game 2012.147: Athletics at Tigers

77-69, 2nd place, 3 games behind CWS.

The Tigers literally threw the game away yesterday afternoon when an errant toss from Omar Infante skipped by Prince Fielder and the tying and winning runs crossed home for Cleveland. That singular play, no more than 10 seconds long, offers a candid perspective into the team’s late season struggles.

1) The Tigers could not convert on a seemingly routine double play. This has happened time and time again this year. While failure to convert double plays are not classified as errors, they extend innings and demoralize pitchers. As Lee Panas of Tiger Tales pointed out in great detail last night, the Tigers have a significant double play problem, and that has largely contributed to costing the team an estimated 36 runs this season. I highly recommend reading the post. On the flip side, the Tigers have grounded into a major league leading 143 double plays.

2) The Tigers 2B made an error. Tigers 2B have committed 14 errors this season (3 worst than league average), and Omar Infante’s 16 (between Miami and Detroit) are tied for 2nd worst in the majors. We specifically went out and got Infante to improve all-around play at 2B, and he’s simply stayed the course. Perhaps the bag is cursed?

3) Fielder could not scoop the throw, much less get in front of it, which would have saved a run. The Tigers overall poor team defense continues to plague the team in subtle ways.

4) The White Sox scored in a bases loaded 1 out situation. Boesch struck out with the bases juiced and two outs to end the 3rd. It wasn’t a 1 out situation, but the Tigers’ inability to score with the bases loaded has been a problem all season.

5) Al Al walked the first batter he faced, which setup the Infante error. Tigers relievers average 3.31 BB/9, the AL average is 3.27/9. Considering that the Tigers are 9 games under in 1 run games, reliever walks are no small matter. Even one additional walk every week relative to playoff teams can lead to a few losses over the course of the season. Of all other playoff contending teams, only the Yankees have a losing record in 1 run games (TB does too, but I think they are toast).

Righty A.J. Griffin opposes Scherzer tonight. Griffin typifies the Athletics organization and their success this year, as the June call-up is 6-0 with a 1.94 ERA and a microscopic .91 WHIP. All the 2010 draft pick has done is throw 10 QS out of 11, and he left early in the only non-QS due to injury. Griffin has been even better in away games, posting a 4-0 record and 1.15 ERA in 5 away starts.

Looks like Avila’s sprained jaw has him out of the lineup tonight.

Tonight’s Berry Good Lineup:

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

 

19 Comments

  1. StorminNorman$

    September 18, 2012 at 7:35 pm

    Scherzer already up to 44 pitches thru 2 innings.

    • bada bing

      September 18, 2012 at 7:49 pm

      …and Scherzer already out of the game after 44 pitches thru 2 innings. Ugh.

  2. Vince in MN

    September 18, 2012 at 7:54 pm

    I thought Smyly was the long man.

  3. TIGERS RULE

    September 18, 2012 at 7:56 pm

    Mad Max – right shoulder fatigue.
    .

    • TIGERS RULE

      September 18, 2012 at 7:59 pm

      Mumbles blames it on all those damn K’s.

  4. Vince in MN

    September 18, 2012 at 7:59 pm

    They are falling apart – literally.

    • Florian

      September 18, 2012 at 8:04 pm

      Or maybe his shoulder has to be preserved for the off-season. The bullpen needs to have more confidence. In the end, that’s baseball.

      Seriously, I hope Max will be fine, and before aggravating a slight injury better rest. Now let’s just remember games #2 and #3 of the season against the Red Sox where the bullpen basically won the games. It seems so long ago.

  5. Vince in MN

    September 18, 2012 at 8:04 pm

    Miggy runs into one.

  6. Vince in MN

    September 18, 2012 at 8:15 pm

    Hochevar going for KC v CHI tonight, so no help there.

  7. Vince in MN

    September 18, 2012 at 8:16 pm

    What was that?

  8. Mark

    September 18, 2012 at 8:19 pm

    Ah yes. I remember that Red Sox series at the beginning of the season. I actually thought it would be like that all summer.

  9. Vince in MN

    September 18, 2012 at 8:47 pm

    Prince runs into one.

  10. scott

    September 18, 2012 at 8:54 pm

    that was funny: he tried to throw that piece of cheese past Miggy one too many times…..it only went 400 feet…….. :-)

  11. StorminNorman

    September 18, 2012 at 8:58 pm

    Fielder cracks the 100 RBI mark

  12. Vince in MN

    September 18, 2012 at 9:57 pm

    Miggy luckily runs into another one.

  13. Florian

    September 18, 2012 at 10:01 pm

    Leaving game after Miggy’s 3-1, reading Dickey’s “Wherever I Wind Up” on the ride home, coming back to witness the Tigers load the bases and Miggy drilling the Grand Slam. Great baseball evening and somehow the way everyone expected every second Tigers game to go after the first three games against the Red Sox. Good Times…

  14. TIGERS RULE

    September 18, 2012 at 10:01 pm

    Miggy = MVP!!!!!

  15. Florian

    September 18, 2012 at 10:14 pm

    The A’s are not playing the top of the ninth anymore – is that the “mercy rule”?

  16. Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

    September 18, 2012 at 10:15 pm

    I’ll take a dozen of these games!