Game 2012.150: Twins at Tigers

Detroit Tigers, 79-70, 2nd place, 1.5 back.

OK, let’s try 150 again.  The weather doesn’t exactly look promising today either, and with a day-night doubleheader on Sunday, the Tigers are already in a jam with their pitching rotation; Detroit will need 6 pitchers over the next 5 days.

The good new is that Max Scherzer has been cleared to pitch, so it looks like Max will pitch the first game Sunday, with Drew Smyly taking the rescheduled rain-out game Sunday night.

In other news, Ron Gardenhire thinks that Cabrera, not Trout should be the MVP: “you can saber all you want.”

Lee Panas has a good breakdown of why “sabering” gets you Trout as the MVP.

Stat of the Day: Detroit leads the AL in first-pitch hitting at bats with 666. (Their results are a bit above average:  the average OPS for first-pitch at bats is .884, the Tigers come in at .899).

Today’s Player of the Pre-game:  Alex Avila. Alex will try to avoid another bout with Prince Fielder, and try to pick up from the hot-hitting Gerald Laird (.364 over last 2 weeks).

Today’s Rain, Rain Go Away Lineup:

  1. Austin Jackson CF
  2. Quintin Berry LF
  3. Miguel Cabrera 3B
  4. Prince Fielder 1B
  5. Delmon Young DH
  6. Andy Dirks RF
  7. Jhonny Peralta SS
  8. Alex Avila C
  9. Omar Infante 2B

26 thoughts on “Game 2012.150: Twins at Tigers”

  1. I predict that Fielder’s elbow to Avila’s jaw was the wake call he needed, and he’ll play well down the stretch

    1. It’s kind of funny this year in that the NL races are all decided except for the 2 WC teams, whereas in the AL everything is still up for grabs.

  2. Whaddya say, guys… can I get a “Hell yeah!”?

    As rocky as this season has been, we still have a pretty good shot at this division…

    1. Hell yeah! Let’s hope Stephen is right about the White Sox. Nice to see contributions from so many different guys.

    2. It ain’t over ’til it’s over. The schedule SHOULD favor the Tigers over the last two weeks, but those last six games on the road are a concern. It’s probably going to go right to the last series in October.

  3. Sorry can’t get psyched about the fact that a Top 5 payroll team is going to make the playoffs because they are in the MLB’s crappiest division. In any other division their season is already over. But yes hooray for them being slightly above average. [sorry, slight edit required].

    1. Only 4 of the top 10 payroll teams are in line to make the playoffs this year, so there isn’t much sense in crying over the money.

      The bottom line is that we’re in a tight pennant race going into the last week and we have enough talent on the roster that we could win it all if we happen to get hot at the right time. That’s exciting stuff. I’ll gladly take it.

      Enjoy your half-empty glass, though, Stephen.

  4. Though he had some illness/injury issues earlier this year, and a position change, Mauer has quietly put together another very good (Mauer-like) season.

    Besides Willingham and Mauer, there has not been too much joy in Twinkie-land this year.

    1. For the first part of the season they were the worst team in baseball, both offensively and pitching. Since then the hitting has picked up. They are 8th in the league in RS now, only 15 behind the Tigers (6th), but the pitching has continued to be dreadful.

        1. With KC playing well combined with the Tigers away from home blues, there is great potential for a 2-4 roadtrip to finish. The Tigers need to do really well on this last home stand. Less than 7-3 could make for a very tough finish.

          1. I think we’ll be tied for the division come Monday morning, so a 7-3 finish would almost certainly get the job done. 6-4 would probably work too and 5-5 might even be enough.

  5. Oakland Bullpen and defense collapse as the Yankees rally to win, 10-9. Orioles still 1 game back. An exciting division finish in store in the AL East too.

  6. See? White Sox just tanking. Meanwhile, Tigers finish the last two weeks against nothing but the Twins and Royals. That’s something out of professional wrestling aka the beauty of the AL Central! Seriously, the whole division should be relegated to the International League. Or the teams should be re-shuffled. Both Rays and Angels are better than the Tigers or the White Sox and they’ll be sitting at home.

    1. See? White Sox just tanking.

      Their season record is barely above .500 and their Sept record is barely below .500. It’s an unfortunate time for them to drop off their pace, but that’s not “tanking” by any meaningful definition. They’re a talented team that’s missing a few pieces, just like the Tigers. It’s anybody’s guess how this thing is going to end.

      By the way, congratulations on figuring out that the Central is the weakest division. If you want parity, support a hard salary cap. Until that happens, the East and West coasts are going to dominate more often than not.

      1. So you’re saying the White Sox are mediocre and now they’re playing less than mediocre. That’s tanking. Or we can change the word: That’s sucking. BTW, a hard salary cap would kill the Tigers. The way they win the division is dominating financially strapped teams like the Twins and Royals. They are probably the greatest benefactors of no salary cap.

        1. I’m tempted to buy you a dictionary, stephen. “Slightly less than .500” isn’t “less than mediocre” or “sucking” by any meaningful definition of the words.

          Of course the salary cap would hurt the Tigers the most. So what? If your primary concern is competitive balance, you should support it anyways. If, OTOH, your primary concern is Tigers success, you should quit whining about the payroll and simply enjoy the fact that they’ve been competitive for the last six years.

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