Game 2013.21: Braves at Tigers

10-10, 2nd place, 1.5 games behind KC.

On the heels of an incredibly disappointing 1-5 stretch, the Tigers welcome the best team in baseball thus far, the Atlanta Braves, to the D. The Braves are 15-6 and an incredible 9-4 on the road. Their early season success is entirely attributable to their sparkling pitching. You ready for this?

Team ERA: 2.52 (Tigers: 3.91)

Team WHIP: 1.13 (1.33)

Team BAA: .230 (.252)

BB/9: 2.42 (3.37)

On the other side of the field, their team batting average is only .250 (.269), but the Braves are near the top of the league in slugging at .446, which adds up to a strong .772 team OPS. I found this to be fascinating..unfortunately this led me to an inspection of Tigers’ slugging numbers.

The Tigers have the third best team BA (.269), but the team’s .372 slugging percentage is 23rd in the Majors. The Tigers vaunted offense is in the bottom 5 of the league in HR and 2B. Avila, VMart and Dirks have a combined 5 XBH between them in 185 ABs. Which is six less than Prince Fielder has in 74 ABs. This is very simple. Two of Avila, VMart and Dirks have to get to average production (let’s say a .400 slugging), else we’re going to have a few more stretches like last week. Note, I’m not asking for them to be above-average players. But a .270/.340/.400/.740 slash line is expected. Martinez and Dirks have ISO numbers of .027 and .021, respectively. Avila’s is a respectable .097, but that’s only because his avg. and OBP are so terrible.

Yes, it’s early, and these rankings are largely a result of a historically awful offensive week. But the numbers are painful to look at nonetheless.

Things won’t get any easier this weekend. The Tigers face a nasty lefthander tonight in Paul Maholm. Maholm has been nearly unhittable in 2013, posting a microscopic 1.03 ERA and .87 WHIP while compiling a 3-1 record in 4 starts this year. The Tigers simply can’t hit lefties (.206/.299/.312/.611 – all at the very bottom of the bigs) so make sure you have a few extra cold ones on hand tonight.

I’ve got to head down to Austin this afternoon for a meeting, so someone please post the lineups when they are avail.



  1. Coleman

    April 26, 2013 at 2:55 pm

    1. Jackson, CF
    2. Hunter, RF
    3, Cabrera, 3B
    4. Fielder, 1B
    5. Martinez, DH
    6. Peralta, SS
    7. Tuiasosopo, LF
    8. Pena, C
    9. Infante, 2B

    • Vince in MN

      April 26, 2013 at 4:43 pm

      Beck has Tui 6th, Peralta 7th.

      • Coleman

        April 26, 2013 at 5:06 pm

        I got lineup from Tiger twitter

  2. Vince in MN

    April 26, 2013 at 4:01 pm

    Still no Santiago.

  3. Angus

    April 26, 2013 at 4:22 pm

    He will probably wait to sub in Ramon later in the game because he will be due for a hit. I do not understand why we keep old veterans like Ramon on the roster and release decent pitchers instead. Someone needs to tell Ramon to retire or take some greenies like Nefi so the league can retire him for us.

  4. Vince in MN

    April 26, 2013 at 4:50 pm

    Maybe they’ll take it up a level vs. ATL, a seriously good club compared to their competition so far, and get out of their funk.

  5. judpma

    April 26, 2013 at 6:47 pm

    this has the makings of one ugly weekend the way the Tigers aren’t scoring…..lets hope not..after all the Braves are a National league team…


      April 26, 2013 at 7:41 pm

      The second inning is a good example!

  6. Vince in MN

    April 26, 2013 at 7:40 pm

    Same old same old.

  7. Vince in MN

    April 26, 2013 at 8:09 pm

    Ah, some runs with the bases loaded – with a hit. And with two outs yet.

  8. Vince in MN

    April 26, 2013 at 8:37 pm

    Tui ran into one. Good guy to have on the bench.

  9. Coleman

    April 26, 2013 at 8:42 pm

    It’s Tui Time tonight!

    • Vince in MN

      April 26, 2013 at 8:51 pm

      And with 5 rbi, I’d say he has a pretty good chance at another start the next time we face a lefthander.

  10. Kevin in Dallas

    April 26, 2013 at 8:44 pm

    1) You’re welcome for the reverse jinx.

    2) Tuiasosopo may be the answer to our Iso problem.

  11. Vince in MN

    April 26, 2013 at 9:03 pm

    I am really amazed at the increase in strikeouts this year. Just a quick glance at team totals and it must be well over 15 per 9 innings (both teams). The Tigers and Red Sox have more Ks than IP so far.

  12. jud

    April 26, 2013 at 9:05 pm

    5 rbi almost assures him of returning to the bench…we are talking Leyland here…….


      April 26, 2013 at 9:13 pm

      An awesome performance at the plate gets rewarded by a benching ….. Smokey should be strung up by the kahoonahs!!!

  13. PHToy in HK

    April 26, 2013 at 9:35 pm

    Did Sanchez just set the team record for K’s in a game?

    • Coleman

      April 26, 2013 at 9:49 pm

      He sure did!

  14. Kevin in Austin for the night

    April 26, 2013 at 9:43 pm

    Any chance JL lets him come back out?

    • Coleman

      April 26, 2013 at 9:49 pm


      • Coleman

        April 26, 2013 at 11:10 pm

        Well, I have to admit it was a good spot to get Rondon going.

  15. Vince in MN

    April 26, 2013 at 9:53 pm

    An easy inning for Rondon in a pressureless situation. Let’s stick with those for a bit while he gets his feet wet.

    • PHToy in HK

      April 26, 2013 at 9:56 pm

      Let’s hope more of such situations come along during the next few weeks.

      • Damned Facetious

        April 26, 2013 at 10:02 pm

        Great job Jimmy! What do you Leyland haters think about that?

  16. Vince in MN

    April 26, 2013 at 10:06 pm

    Good to get the first one under our belt. Fister, who goes on Sunday has been very dependable, but with Porcello tomorrow, that might be the weak link. Let’s hope the offense is back.

  17. bada bing

    April 26, 2013 at 10:12 pm

    17 ks!!!! This game has to rank favorably in all-time Tiger pitching performances.

    • Only Tiger Fan in Mississppi

      April 26, 2013 at 10:16 pm

      Sanchez passes the great Mickey Lolich in game Ks. A fun night and great way to start the weekend…game on MLB channel too!

  18. StorminNorman

    April 26, 2013 at 10:36 pm

    in a word, “impressive!”

  19. Coleman

    April 26, 2013 at 11:09 pm

    Well, that was a waste of runs, we only needed one! Figures we’d have our best offensive game in weeks against the pitcher it seems we’d be least likely to hit. As the Skipper would say, “that’s baseball!” As nice as it was to see Tui do well, it was even nicer–and more important–to see Victor have a big day.

  20. Jim Eggers USMC Rifle Expert1971

    April 27, 2013 at 1:01 am

    I actually got to watch the game, with the home team announcers on MLB and it was fun. Great to see Tui clutch it up and jack one too. I have been hoping to see VM turn it around… he had been hitting balls hard for awhile; great “graphic” by Rod to show how he has centered his bat and body to the ball. It has been something I taught for years and when a kid would get it, invariably Mom or Dad would ask what did you do? I would try to explain it and you could see their eyes glaze over. Special unis tomorrow, hope to see another good one, although I hate to see runs “wasted” too.

  21. Smoking Loon

    April 28, 2013 at 2:03 am

    Mickey Lolich on having his record bested by Anibal: