Detroit Tigers: 30-25, 1st Place (1 ahead of Cleveland).
It’s a big week in the D: Detroit take on the tough Tampa Bay Rays (who, while in 4th place, have a better record than the Tigers), then have a 3-game set with the Cleveland Indians.
The Tigers just got back from a 1-4 road trip, in which they scored 20 runs (decent, right, that’s 4 per game), but in which they also had 8 runs in one inning, and 12 in the other 46 (oh…not so good). This may explain why they have a skewed Pythagorean win number (as Stormin’ Norman pointed out, and as we pointed out here after Game 48).
At any rate, the Tigers have trouble “manufacturing” runs, which is not news to the DTW readers–Alex Avila’s bunt DP probably generated as much comment as anything so far this season. The team is beginning to show its 2012 Feast-Or-Famine form, where they alternate blow-outs with no-show-outs, punctuated by inning 7-9 narcolepsy.
The Tigers are batting a combined .216 through innings 7-9 this year, with a paltry .616 OPS, which is better than all of one team in the AL. The good news is that that one team is the Indians, but this does not exactly bode well for a playoff run. ( A classic example was Sunday’s game against the Orioles: O’Day got through the 8th inning with 4 pitches–and gave up a hit! the whole thing took less than 5 minutes).
In other news Quintin Berry was claimed by the Royals. I predict he will steal 20 bases against Detroit in his brief time with Kansas City.
Then there is the “Sponsored Headlines” section of the ESPN previews. I mean, what’s up with that? “Kristen Stewart Leaves Little to the Imagination?” Or “21 Facts About Dogs That Will Make You Blow Your Mind?” I mean, seriously.
Today’s Player of the Pre-game: Anibal Sanchez. With Moore on the mound for TB and the Tiger bats in full Feast-Or-Famine mode, Anibal has small margin for error.
Today’s Home Cookin’ Lineup: