Detroit Tigers, 79-70, 2nd place, 2 back.
You can’t win them all.
Even the very best teams lose 40% of the time; that’s baseball. The Tigers took 2 games out of 3 from a very successful Oakland A’s team, which all-in-all was a successful series. And yet…to look so bad losing, at this point in the season, is not encouraging.
Lynn Henning is perhaps stating the obvious when he said the main weakness the Tigers have is their gloves. It is hard to tell how last night would have turned out with good defense, but the impact defense had on the game was certainly far beyond the 1 unearned run in the box score.
Buster Olney has a bit of a different take on the topic. Yes, the Tiger defense is awful, but the players have been supportive of each other–notably the pitchers have never publicly complained. Perhaps Jim Leyland deserves some credit for the team unity.
Well it’s all Twins and Royals from here on out.
Tonight Rick Porcello will try to break a personal 6-start winless streak, and last beyond the 4th inning. Whether he can or not will probably have something to do with Denard Span (11-for-29 against Porcello). Samuel Deduno will try the Tigers again, after lasting a personal best 8 innings while beating Detroit during the last series between the teams.
No word yet on whether Max Scherzer will or will not make his Sunday start.
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 Alex Is Back Lineup: