Game 2012.162: Tigers at Royals

87-74, Central Division Champs

I’ve got to admit, I’m pretty excited about the potential Triple Crown. Here are a few Triple Crown facts for you:

– The Triple Crown has been accomplished 16 times, but none since Carl Yastzremski in 1967. Yastrzemski tied Harmon Killebrew for the HR lead that year with 44. Miggy is the first player since Yastrzemski to enter the final week of the season with a serious chance to win.

– Ty Cobb won the triple crown in 1909 with 9 HR, 107 RB and a .377 average.

– Rogers Hornsby (1922 and 1925) and Ted Williams (1942 and 1947) are the only players to win it twice.

– Every player to have won a Triple Crown is now in the hall of fame.

– 13 of the 16 Triple Crown winners came before 1950, and it happened 8 times between 1922 and 1947.

– No third baseman has ever won the Triple Crown. The breakdown by position is: 1B  2, 2B 3 (Hornsby), LF 5 (including 2 by Williams), CF 3, and RF 3.

– The highest totals per category are 52 HR (Mantle, 1956), 165 RBI (Gehrig 1934) and a .440 average (Duffy, 1894).

– The lowest totals per category are 4 HR (Paul Hines, 1878), 50 RBI (Hines, 1878) and a .316 average (Frank Robinson, 1966).

Latest news is that Cabrera may sit if the Triple Crown is sewn up. Since he has a comfortable lead in BA, I think this is a good idea. Note that if Trout goes 6-6, he’ll mathematically pass Cabrera (.3309 to .3306), so stay tuned. Hamilton starts at 3:35 pm today, Trout starts at 6:40 pm.

I’ll post lineups when they are available.


  1. William

    October 3, 2012 at 6:27 pm

    Hamilton just had what will likely be his final at bat–K for last out of Texas’s half of the 8th. 1-5, no HR.

    Rangers down 3 headed to the bottom of the 8th.

  2. Vince in MN

    October 3, 2012 at 6:45 pm

    Looks like a shoe-in for the A’s over TX. We have heard much talk of a WSox collapse, but how about the Rangers? Or are the A’s just heroic?

    • Coleman

      October 4, 2012 at 11:46 am

      Texas had a 15-16 Sept/Oct, which isn’t exactly good, but is hardly a collapse. The A’s just went on a miracle run: 20-11 in Sept/Oct, 51-25 after the break. They went from a .500 first half team to a 102-win-pace 2nd half team.

      And the last day of the season was the first time they were alone in first.

      Detroit got a tough draw in the playoffs…would much rather be playing the Yankees than the “hot” team.

      • Vince in MN

        October 4, 2012 at 7:56 pm

        The Tigers were the “hot” team going into the ’06 Series and look how that turned out. The hotness has to end sometime and I think Tiger pitching can do the job. Beginning the series at home is a big plus. The Tigers can’t afford any clown show antics from here on out, but based on the previous 162 games I don’t know if they can go another (potentially) 19 games without slipping into old habits. Take ’em one game at a time I guess – it should be a good series.

        • Kevin in Dallas

          October 4, 2012 at 11:06 pm

          Will anyone else consider giving up baseball altogether if Brandon Inge gets a WS ring?

  3. Vince in MN

    October 3, 2012 at 6:54 pm

    Personally, I don’t think it would be sporting for Cabrera to sit if there is any chance for Trout to catch him. Can you imagine the PR kerfluffle – it would be a “tainted” win, e.g. if say Cabrera has the chance to go 0 for 4 while Trout has a 3 for 3 or 4 for 4 night. I say he has to play just to remove any doubt at all. For all Leyland’s f;aws as a strategic and tactical manager, I thought he was supposed to be relatively savvy on the PR end. He is more than the complete idiot I think he is if he doesn’t play Miggy. And I am sure Miggy wants to play. During the game, if it becomes ABSOLUTELY CLEAR that Trout isn’t going to catch him, then pull him.

    • FWI Tiger

      October 3, 2012 at 7:00 pm

      Forget that! You want a PR kerfluffle, just imagine if Cabrera injures himself and misses playoff time because of some macho BS in a meaningless game. Now that’s one we’d never hear the end of.

      • Vince in MN

        October 3, 2012 at 7:11 pm

        The game is meaningless, but the batting title part of the Triple Crown isn’t.

        A definition of sporting: fair and generous in one’s behavior or treatment of others, esp. in a game or contest.

        If for you that is an equivalent definition of BS, fine. It isn’t for me.

        • FWI Tiger

          October 4, 2012 at 11:10 am

          You want fair & sporting? Then how about you suggest that Trout keep his average up over another 22 games and 63 at bats (the numbers fewer than Cabrera that he posted).

          Cabrera played in 160 of the first 161 games this season, that is plenty fair and sporting. Demanding that he play in one more to “be a good sport” is BS. He built a safe lead, helped the Tigers accomplish the team goal and should rightfully be beyond reproach should he have chosen to rest yesterday.

  4. Andrew in Toronto

    October 3, 2012 at 7:06 pm

    Leyland said some hours ago that Cabrera is playing, so no PR problem, deserved or not.

    Hamilton is done. Trout already has had an unproductive plate appearance (HBP), so his chances are even lower now.

    Only real risk – slim – is a bunch of Granderson homers. (Game 163 would count.)

  5. Andrew in Toronto

    October 3, 2012 at 7:21 pm

    I don’t agree that it would be unsporting for Cabrera to sit tonight. The difference between this case is that the Tigers have qualified for the playoffs, Cabrera has played 160 games, and has a sore ankle.

    If a guy would normally play, but sits down to protect his title, that is lame.

    But if a guy would normally not play — because of the situation the Tigers are now in — then I see nothing wrong with it.

    Anyway, he’s playing and it will be great. The whole baseball world will watch. Hopefully he hits a homer and then Leyland replaces him.

    • Vince in MN

      October 3, 2012 at 7:31 pm

      “The whole baseball world will watch”.

      Plus, he is playing hurt. My point exactly. This is how baseball legends are made.

      • Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

        October 3, 2012 at 7:52 pm

        What a memorable Tigers season!!!

  6. Andrew in Toronto

    October 3, 2012 at 7:25 pm

    Trout is 0 for 1 now in the 3rd inning, so it’s pretty much a done deal now!

    Triple Crown!

  7. Vince in MN

    October 3, 2012 at 7:46 pm

    Granderson homered in his first AB – now at 42.

  8. Vince in MN

    October 3, 2012 at 9:23 pm

    With the Yankees handily beating the Dead Sox, it looks like A’s v. Tigers on Saturday.

  9. Kevin in Dallas

    October 3, 2012 at 9:43 pm

    AJax finishes at .300. Good for him.

  10. Vince in MN

    October 3, 2012 at 9:48 pm

    Cabrera finishes at .330, Trout .326. Granderson just hit his 2nd homer of the game in the 7th inning, giving him 43, and he shouldn’t get another AB, but with the Dead Sox throwing batting practice tonight….

  11. PHToy in HK

    October 3, 2012 at 10:08 pm

    Interesting that Granderson was pinch-hit for.

  12. Bill

    October 3, 2012 at 10:09 pm

    Its official! Yankees drubbing the Red Sox + they just pinch hit for Granndy. Congrats Miggy!

  13. Kevin in Dallas

    October 3, 2012 at 10:42 pm

    Interviewing Grandy on MLB network now. Very gracious to Cabby. Says he had no idea, but came out to let some of the other guys get ABs.

    We’ll have to get into a Granderson v. Jackson debate in the off-season. I think Jackson is a no-brainer. Fangraphs WAR – AJax – 5.3 (salty); Granderson (2.2), just behind Jhonny Peralta at 2.7…

    • Andrew in Toronto

      October 4, 2012 at 10:07 am

      Baseball Reference has Jackson with a 3-year WAR of 14.9 vs. 12.1 for Granderson. When you consider their ages and their contracts, it makes it quite clear that we’ve done better.

      Plus, I think that given the configuration of the 2 ballparks, each guy is in the better place. Granderson would not have had a 12.1 WAR if he was a Tiger the last 3 years.

  14. Kevin in Dallas

    October 3, 2012 at 11:48 pm

    KC gave Miggy quite a send-off at the stadium. Really cool.

  15. Pete

    October 4, 2012 at 12:38 am

    I was flipping back and forth between the Yankees and the Tigs and when I saw Granderson hit his second homerun and still in the game I couldn’t believe it. Earlier in the day I was talking to a colleague at work about what the chances were of Granderson catching Miggy and almost destroyed my tv in retaliation of the transpiring events. If Granderson would have caught Miggy I would only expect the Yankees to go bush league and leave him in. But congratulations Miggy you are by far the Most Valuable Player in the league because you provide the mot value to your team!

  16. NWO

    October 4, 2012 at 5:43 am

    Peralta at 2.7 WAR (even considering he is playing SS) is sufficient reason to wonder how good the metric is. By pure eye sight, he has been very much in negative teritory the last 2 months. And I like the guy.

    • Kevin in Dallas

      October 4, 2012 at 6:30 am

      I agree. But perhaps we are all grossly underestimating the value of solid (if limited) SS play.

    • Vince in MN

      October 4, 2012 at 6:31 am

      Maybe what WAR really measures is the value of replacement players, e.g. Raburn, Kelly, Santiago, Worth, etc. That is, if replacement players are really so subpar, then doesn’t that lower the bar for what is average?

      • Kevin in Dallas

        October 4, 2012 at 9:13 am

        I heard this morning that the Angels have the highest total WAR in the AL West – where did that get them?

        • stephen

          October 6, 2012 at 2:40 am

          The Angels high WAR got them a record 3 games better than the Tigers. Not their fault they don’t play in a joke division,

          • Kevin in Dallas

            October 6, 2012 at 4:26 pm

            Not the Tigers’ fault either.

          • travisfrymanfan

            October 6, 2012 at 4:46 pm

            Tigers vs the East: 21-18. LAA: 22-20

    • Andrew in Toronto

      October 4, 2012 at 10:00 am

      I read that playing next a poor-fielding player can increase your defensive WAR as you get to some balls that you normally wouldn’t. I have been happy with Miggy at 3B, but perhaps Peralta is getting some extra plays as a result, boosting his otherwise weak numbers.

  17. Kevin in Dallas

    October 4, 2012 at 9:14 am

    I’m sure that many of you read this already – but Drew Sharp wrote a great article about Cabrera’s Triple Crown this morning.|topnews|text|Detroit%20Tigers

    Apparently most of his teammates were even more excited than Cabrera was. JV gave him a congratulatory watch.