Game 2013.110: Tigers at Indians

64-45, 1st place, 3 games up on Cleveland. That last is simply not possible. I’m sure the lead is really 7 or 8 games by now, but I’ve got to pay lip service to the dubious standings information over at mlb.com.

If my speech seems a little garbled, it’s because I have no jaw. It didn’t just drop. It fell off over the weekend as the Tigers took 3 from the White Sox to extend their winning streak to 8. I found it on the floor today, but then Rick Porcello walked off with it. He gave it to Bruce Rondon, who then handed it to Torii Hunter. It’s OK. I don’t need it. The Tigers have a bullpen. The Tigers have defense. The Tigers have clutch hitting. The Tigers are winning close games. The already great starting pitching has now gone completely off the charts – and it’s not being wasted. All this magic is taking place without… well, you know the story. And taking place with a suspension (for something – if anything – that I have to believe is well in the past) hanging over the head of All-Star SS Jhonny Peralta. (Kevin’s right – nerves of steel there.)

So… it’s time for the Showdown in O-Town*. The Motown/O-Town Showdown. Which would make this the Lowdown on the Motown/O-Town Showdown. If this series should give us cause to celebrate, be here Thursday for the Motown/O-Town Showdown Hoedown (and Friday for the ensuing Lowdown). No, nothing about the AL Central is going to be decided in early August, but it’s still pretty big.

* “O” for Ohio, of course. I’m pretty sure “O-Town” is the hip local insider slang term for “Cleveland.” Though I could be wrong.

The Tigers have won 9 of 12 against the Indians. 5-1 at Progressive Field, 4-2 at Comerica Park. Study up:

May 10, Tigers 10-4
May 11, Indians 7-6
May 12, Indians 4-3
May 21, Tigers 5-1
May 22, Tigers 11-7
June 7, Tigers 7-5
June 8, Tigers 6-4
June 9, Tigers 4-1
July 5, Tigers 7-0
July 6, Tigers 9-4
July 7, Indians 9-6
July 8, Tigers 4-2

Obviously, Detroit has found its way around a few bothersome things about the Indians: a) When hitters reach base, they tend to steal, and then score; b) They hit home runs, which is annoying; c) Their starting pitching is often better than it’s supposed to be, which is very annoying, and; d) Ryan Raburn. That last actually counts as something the Tigers haven’t found their way around, while remaining bothersome.

Some 2013 vs. Tigers stats to chew on (tomorrow it’ll be vs. Indians):

Kluber: 3 games, .320 BAA, .976 OPSA, 5 HR & 22 K in 17 IP
Masterson: 2 games, .283 BAA, .732 OPSA, 7 BB in 12 IP
McAllister: 1 game, 6 IP, 3 ER, 8 H, 3 BB, 5 K
Perez: 4-16 .583 OPSA
Shaw: 7-30 .636
Hill 5-22 .761
Smith: 5-15 .874
Hagadone: 2-10 .685
Albers: 6-24 .774
Allen: 2-17 .463

Bourn: 11-50 .475 OPS, 0 HR, 3 RBI
Brantley: 12-42 .810, 2 HR 11 RBI
Kipnis: 10-50 .533, 0 HR, 5 RBI
Reynolds: 7-37 .457, 0 HR, 3 RBI
Santana: 10-42 .772, 2 HR, 5 RBI
A. Cabrera: 8-32, .726, 0 HR, 2 RBI
Chisenhall: 6-24 .792, 1 HR, 3 RBI
Giambi: 1-18 .404, 1 HR, 3 RBI
Stubbs: 7-26 .709, 1 HR, 2 RBI
Raburn: 4-14 1.340, 3 HR, 6 RBI
Gomes: 6-18 .924, 1 HR, 1 RBI
Aviles: 4-25 ,360, 0 HR, 1 RBI
Swisher: 10-37 .846, 1 HR, 3 RBI

Don’t stare at these stats too long, lest the phrase “piece of cake” should come to mind. But I’m hoping that Anibal sets the tone right away. Sanchez has been excellent of late, though not the strikeout king he began the season (rather unexpectedly) as. One start against Cleveland this season, a reasonably good limited pitch count outing on July 6.

We will probably see the re-debut of Jeremy Bonderman as a Tiger this series, out of the bullpen at some point. Cool, and good luck to him, of course. This pales next to the pending news on Peralta, which everyone seems to be taking as a foregone conclusion. We’ll see. Losing Jhonny will not be good, but the team has prepared itself as well as it can. Will Miguel Cabrera please return to the lineup ASAP and make us all feel a little bit better, preferably with a 3-HR game?

49 thoughts on “Game 2013.110: Tigers at Indians”

  1. A sweep is too much to expect, 3 of 4 would be great and a split would be acceptable.
    The Indians are 37-19 at home (tied with Tigers for best home record in AL). Tigers are 27-26 away.

  2. Though DET and CLE have 53 and 51 regular season games remaining (respectively) and there’s a lot of baseball to be played, this series is pretty close to a ‘make or break series’ for CLE, we shall see how both teams respond.

    1. though its not likely to happen, since the ‘agreed upon penalty is 50 games’, Peralta would/could be eligible to play in DET’s last 3 regular season games and could also be added to the playoff roster… just sayin

        1. With a 7-week layoff, what kind of shape is he going to be in? And as far as the playoffs go, I think they deal with that when (if) we get there. As Kevin says “there are a lot of games left”, although whether on not we’ll be fine remains to be seen. We’ll just have to wait and see. As Leyland says, “we ain’t done nothin’ yet”.All I can say is “play ball”

    2. I assume Perez returns to take his place on the roster. We’ll miss his bat with Fielder putting up sub-Delmon Young numbers all summer (.250/.317/.400/.717 since June 1 and getting worse).

          1. Yes, and referring to a Jason Beck tweet, where he quoted Cabrera about Fielder to the effect of “you guys have no idea all the injuries he’s been playing through.” I’m not impressed: if he is hurt, he should sit.

  3. Ok Boys, the A-Team is playing tonight. It appears Iglesias skill in the field and our starters’ magic will help us digest the Tiger’s loss of Peralta?

  4. Sanchez has only given up one HR to Cleveland off A. Cabrera while Kluber has been clubbed with 3 HR by M. Cabrera, 1 by Fielder, and 1 by Dirks.

  5. The Indians know how to m-a-n-u-f-a-c-t-u-r-e runs. For those of you who are not loooong time Tiger fans, this may be an alien concept.

  6. Do we think we could get Jhonny to be a guest DTW anaylst during his suspension?

    1. Well, the checks stop coming while he is under suspension, so maybe he would consider it for some percentage of that missed salary.

  7. Hopefully they get out of zombie mode tomorrow. Can’t afford that with the unpredictable Verlander going.

  8. Baserunning still stinks and brookens looks lost as third bade coach. Should have had runners on 1st and 3rd with one out and one run in.

    1. i’m not watching but following online – and was having trouble figuring out how with runners on 1st & 2nd and Hunter hits a single to RF and AJ gets thrown out at 2nd… I see now where either AJ was careless or Brookens erroneously held Santiago at 3rd, and AJ had made the turn heading for 3rd.

      it appears DET gave away at least a couple runs on the base paths tonight

    1. I think he’s back to the Mendoza Line.

      Not sure what has happened to him in the past 2-3 weeks, but I’ll take it.

  9. Can you believe I missed the 9th? We had a thunderstorm blow thru and shut down my Direct TV for two innings. Service was restored for Beniot’s final two outs while I watched with open mouth!

  10. I did not post last night to jinx them but we stole one here. Hopefully we can at least pickup one more from them. AA is a surprise. I thought it was a pop fly and it went out.

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