Game 2013.78: Tigers at Rays

42-35, 1st place, 2.5 games up on Cle.

Being in first place is tough. Everyone is gunning for you. Even the LAA Angels, who now own an 8 game winning streak over our boys. I know, it sounds crazy. Just one of those quirky baseball streaks. Like Phil Coke losing 5 games in a row. Hilarious.

There’s a lot not to like about the Angels series and yesterday’s game in particular, but we’ve all read it and lamented to our uninterested wives (well, at least my wife isn’t too interested in why Coke was left in to face 2 righties, who as a group have a .900 OPS against him), so let’s move on.

We’re still in first place, no one else in the division is getting any better, and we’ve got a lot of time to figure out (trade for) a bullpen. Let’s enjoy a good baseball weekend.

Help is on the way. Or more precisely, Bruce Rondon should be in the bullpen tonight (Reed down). He will not be the closer . ! I don’t have high expectations for him in the short-term, as I don’t think the he’s seasoned enough for the bigs. On the flip side, this could be the shot in the arm that the bullpen needs to feel less annoyed, man. I think it’s a great, low-risk, move.

If you want to drink beers with Jose Valverde, I think this is your chance. You’ll just have to do it in Toledo (wait until next Wednesday).

Tonight’s Lineup:

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


  1. Coleman

    June 28, 2013 at 6:52 pm

    I’m looking for Max “New Staff Ace” Scherzer to shut down the Rays, enough so that I avoided Rays players in the Beat the Streak in One Day thing. Interesting that Kelly gets the Lefty slot instead of Dirks–it looks like Leyland has also discovered Dirks isn’t doing much of anything. And if we could only get Fielder “going”.. .

  2. Vince in MN

    June 28, 2013 at 7:07 pm

    Cy Colome (1-0, 0.00) on the mound for TB tonight. We’re doomed.


    June 28, 2013 at 7:42 pm

    We are tattooing the ball pretty good so far today, unfortunately at an outfielder, except for Miggy who hit it where it couldn’t be caught. Hope we can continue and it starts falling where they aren’t standing and it results in a bucket full of runs.


    June 28, 2013 at 7:46 pm

    Mad Max is really dealing tonight, but nonetheless, lets get him some more runs.

  5. Vince in MN

    June 28, 2013 at 8:00 pm

    Miggy seems to have Mr. Colome figured out.

    • Coleman

      June 28, 2013 at 8:13 pm

      Apparently he thought his name was pronounced “GoLong.”

  6. Coleman

    June 28, 2013 at 8:12 pm

    Max may be on pace for 25-0. Which raises the question: would Leyland have the guts to start Max over JV in Game 1 of the playoffs? Seems a Jo-brainer right now, but you know how Leyland is. Fascinating..,

    • Vince in MN

      June 28, 2013 at 8:29 pm

      Lots of games between now and the playoffs. Leyland could be gone by then.

    • Jerry the Tiger Fan

      June 29, 2013 at 2:32 am

      This is an interesting question Coleman. If the playoffs were starting tomorrow I wonder if Ol’ Smoky would have the sack to start Max in Game 1. I think its the most logical move, but I’m willing to bet that Ol’ Smoky would run JV out there for Game 1 of a playoff series that started tomorrow. He might not be wrong to do it, but I would not agree with it. It would be interesting to see how JV would react. I would hope that JV would react with a mindset of “I’ll show him” and come out with electric stuff in Game 2 of a playoff series, but I keep waiting for that this season and its been a rare occurrence.

      If I were managing the club and we had a playoff series starting next week I’d go Scherzer in Game 1, Verlander in Game 2, and Fister in Game 3. Of course Sanchez would have to be omitted if the series were starting tomorrow, but if Anibal pitches the way he did before hurting his shoulder I’d be tempted to make him my Game 2 starter in an October playoff series. Sanchez has been the superior pitcher to JV this season.

  7. Vince in MN

    June 28, 2013 at 8:22 pm

    Avila 3 for 20 (.150) at Toledo. He might rehab the rest of the year and not do any better than that.


    June 28, 2013 at 8:47 pm

    How long do we stick with VMart at DH before we try someone else, say Tui or Avi. I say by the 100th game, if there is no improvement it’s time to change!

    • Judpma

      June 28, 2013 at 10:40 pm

      this just in: Announcement: from Jim Leyland:::: I will move VMart out of the 5 spot when h*ll freezes over……who in the (expletive) do you expect me to ( expletive) bat there

    • Vince in MN

      June 29, 2013 at 2:59 pm

      Only an injury takes V-Mart out of the DH spot (or 5th spot, same thing).

      An injury to V-Mart I mean. Although an injury to Leyland…

  9. StorminNorman$

    June 28, 2013 at 9:30 pm

    I really like DET’s roster even though they’ve underachieved so far this year, but having said that, can you imagine where they’d be without Cabrera?

    • Jerry the Tiger Fan

      June 29, 2013 at 2:33 am

      We would be fighting the White Sox to stay out of the AL Central cellar without Cabby. He means that much to this lineup.

      • William

        June 29, 2013 at 5:11 pm

        Speaking of the sox….Detroit’s first game against Hawk & co isn’t until just before the break. Tigers still have 19 games left against what is shaping up to be a really bad team. They will likely be dumping salary in July.

        Could make a big difference in the race.

  10. Kevin in Dallas

    June 28, 2013 at 9:34 pm

    H o l y C o w.

  11. Judpma

    June 28, 2013 at 10:37 pm

    Mumbles could have sent an important message to AlAl who was sent to Toledo because he walks batters especially the lead off no no… after Al Al walked that first batter he should have been pulled…..but Capt mumbles didn’t want him to feel bad so his no leadership style continued……………

    • Jerry the Tiger Fan

      June 29, 2013 at 2:38 am

      My question is why didn’t Smyly pitch the entire 8th inning? IIRC Smyly hadn’t pitched since last Sunday versus the BoSox. Why entrust an important 8th inning lead to a guy that struggles to throw strikes consistently? Smyly is the only reliever that has shown himself to be trustworthy in protecting a lead. Why mess around with AA when the team was in desperate need of a win? It worked out, but sometimes Ol’ Smoky likes make things a lot more interesting than they need to be.

  12. Judpma

    June 28, 2013 at 10:41 pm

    Thanks for winning us another game…Miggy! Max!

  13. Vince in MN

    June 29, 2013 at 9:26 am

    Rondon had to be brought up. When Valverde accepted his assignment to Toledo, Rondon lost his Closer job there.

    • Kevin in Dallas

      June 29, 2013 at 4:01 pm


  14. JimEggersUSMC

    June 29, 2013 at 2:29 pm

    Miggy and Max are for sure carrying the load for this club, I enjoyed this week’s SI with Dan Patrick’s My Turn column devoted to old 2 eyes of s different color. Max seems to understand the slippery nature of the life of an MLB pitcher very well, and has a wicked sense of humor too. I see him as a guy I would love to sit down with, break bread and just talk about anything and come away happy.

  15. Jerry the Tiger Fan

    June 29, 2013 at 3:20 pm

    Hey guys, just for discussion-only purposes I want to discuss a dream that I had last night. A blockbuster trade that involved the Nats and the Tigers. We traded JV straight up for Bryan Harper. At first I was shocked and not sure how I felt about it, but I woke up and alas it was but a dream. However, I am curious as to how people would react to such news if it had actually happened.

    I was still thinking about it over breakfast and it didn’t seem that outlandish to me the more that I thought about it. Harper would be the cornerstone of our outfield for the next 10 years along with Ajax. Harper would plug the 5 hole problem for the forseeable future and we could send VMart packing after this season and move him to 7th in the lineup in the meantime. We would shed ourselves of Verlander’s huge contract (although I suspect in a few years Harper would get just as big of a contract) in the short term and could go with a starting rotation of Scherzer, Sanchez, Fister, Smyly, and Porcello. We could send Smyly down to Toledo for three weeks to stretch him out and get a few 3-4 starts under his belt and keep Alvarez as the 5th starter until Smyly is ready. Once Smyly is ready we can send Alvarez back to Toledo OR we could package up Porcello and prospects for a legit closer and keep Alvarez as the 5th starter behind Scherzer, Sanchez, Fister, and Smyly.

    Its interesting to think about and decidedly out of the box, but I was wondering how some of my other Detroit Tiger diehards would react to such a trade if it were to happen.

    • William

      June 29, 2013 at 5:52 pm

      I would be against it, but it is intriguing. Out of the box is right.

    • Vince in MN

      June 29, 2013 at 5:56 pm

      Are you insane! To suggest to do such a thing with the Blessed Verlander is blasphemy!