Game 2012.155: Royals at Tigers

82-72, 1st PLACE!

Anibal Sanchez picked a prime spot for his best performance as a Tiger when he picked through the Royals lineup with ease, allowing only 3 hits in a complete game shut-out. Sanchez K’d 10 against only 1 walk. Sanchez had to be nearly perfect, because Chen was surgical, according to Leyland. Chen was great, but Sanchez was spectacular.

Ricky P returns from vacation just in time to start for a first place club. Things haven’t been going so well during his recent outings. The Tigers have not won in his last 7 starts, and Porcello has taken the loss in 6 of those. Though he’s hardly to blame. During that 7 game stretch Porcello has allowed more than 3 runs just once, and the Tigers are 0-5 in one-run games (remember, we’re on an 0-11 one run game streak). Porcello’s ERA has actually dropped (4.68 to 4.57) during this 7 game span. Porcello is 1-1 with a 3.46 ERA against the Royals this season, and 5-3 with a 4.50 ERA versus KC over his career.

Jeremy Guthrie has been fantastic for the Royals as of late, only allowing 6 ER in his last 36 1/3 (1.49 ERA) and posting 5 straight quality starts, including 7 1/3 of 1 run ball against the Tigers on August 30th – though the Tigers did have 10 hits. In two starts against the Tigers this season, Guthrie is 1-1 with a 3.48 ERA. Cabrera is 7-19 (.368) with 2 HR off of Guthrie.

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A few notes:

– Looks like ESPN has Bob Holtzman trailing the Tigers to cover the Triple Crown. He said that he asked Cabrera in the locker room if Cabbie was keeping an eye on Hamilton (on the TV), and Cabrera said “no, why would I? I’ve got a game to get ready for tomorrow.” Cabrera’s head is in the right place.

– Though I’m not sure if Leyland’s is…he was quoted yesterday as saying: “I’m surprised we haven’t won more games than we have. I figured this team would win somewhere between 90 and 95 games.” It’s a little disconcerting that the manager of the team is surprised by anything. It’s as if he’s not paying attention.

– The last two selections for the DTW post image have thrown 10 innings of 3 hit, shutout ball, FYI.

– Papa Grande has hired Scott Boras. Boras and Dombrowski have worked together over the years (Pudge, Maggs, Rogers, Fielder). Curious time to get a new agent.

– 4 Ks from Porcello would set a new season high (currently 104 in 2011).

Tonight’s 1st Place Lineup:

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