Game 2013.148: Royals at Tigers

85-62, Magic Number is 10.

Good win last night in a game where Justin Verlander had 0 walks. In fact, he didn’t get to a 3 ball count until the 4th, and had only 2 such counts all night. 9 Royals’ hits in 6 2/3 drove up the pitch count, but if JV issues his 2-3 walks along with those 9 hits, we’re talking about a different ball game. Interestingly, all 3 runs that the Royals scored last night came with 2 outs, and JV has allowed 42 runs with 2 outs this year. That’s nearly 1/2 of his runs allowed all year.

More two out JV fun – all stats are 0 outs/1 outs/2 outs.

  • BAA: .260/.230/.284.
  • BB: 19/19/30.
  • OPS+: 92/68/132.
  • BABIP: .304/.299/.353.
  • K/BB: 3.05/3.58/2.10

How do you explain/fix that?

Fister gets the rock tonight. Despite a respectable 5-3 and 3.32 ERA over his last 10, he needs to get into post-season shape as well. His WHIP during that time is 1.38 and he’s been drilled in 2 out of his last 3 starts. Fister was lights out in the playoffs last year, let’s get back to that.

Since my post yesterday, Boston has won twice and Chris Davis hit #50. Home field advantage and the triple crown are going to be very difficult and nearly impossible to achieve, respectively.

So let’s focus on four issues which I’d like to see worked out over the remaining 14 games – 1) can Cabrera get healthy, 2) can the bullpen pitchers settle into defined roles, 3) who will play LF and 4) can JV be dominant in the postseason.

A few notes:

– Remember, Iglesias is only a rookie. AL ROY?

– A little run support in the Game Poster League would be nice.

Peralta in LF is a real thing. I’m not against it.

– 2B prospect Devon Travis is the Tigers’ minor league player of the year.

Tonight’s Regulars Lineup:

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

73 thoughts on “Game 2013.148: Royals at Tigers”

  1. Good stuff on JV with 2 outs, Kevin. I’ve noticed, as many of us probably have, and there’s obviously something to it, more than a statistical quirk. Don’t know what it is, but I’ll take a guess: Two outs, he relaxes, starts working on things, complicating things, making pitch choices he wouldn’t have made to the same batter an out ago. He gets all “finesse” with 2 outs, getting away from “just pitching.” Just a guess.

  2. I don’t see Peralta *starting* in LF as a good or necessary thing, but being able to keep him in the game (in LF) after he pinch-hits is a great idea. Not that he couldn’t also stay/come into the game at SS (offensive) or 3B (defensive) as well.

    I can’t remember if Castellanos is eligible for the postseason roster, but he doesn’t really belong there, in my view.

  3. The Rangers have now lost 5 in a row–at home–and have to win tomorrow or be virtually eliminated from contention in the West. How quickly that changed!

  4. Yan Gomes would get my vote as AL Rookie of the Year, if I had one. Iglesias and Archer would be close seconds.

    1. Jose Iglesias would get my vote as AL Rookie of the Year, if I had one. Gomes and Archer would be close seconds.

      1. Archer would get my vote as AL Rookie of the Year, if I had one. Gomes and Iglesias would be close seconds.

  5. the other thing JV did well was limit the 2 strike foul balls. Seems like there have been 25-30 a game recently upping the pitch count and last night I thought it was more like the past couple years where he put batters away sooner.

    1. I’m not sure how to extrapolate number of out-of-play foul balls from the following:

      Pit Str StL StS GB FB LD PU

      Anyone? I don’t see any direct reference to fouled-off pitches at baseball-reference.com.

  6. Devon Travis (assuming the best) is probably two years away, eh? Interesting situation at 2B brewing, with Infante a free agent after this season.

      1. What’s the mood at the ballpark? I think this one might be long and futile. Or it will be short and seem long. Santana is a beast against the Tigers.

    1. Fister is something to cheer about. Odd that the Tigers score the least runs for their two groundball pitchers.

  7. Cy Santana at it as usual..funny that he isn’t 20-0..Tigers take pitch after pitch in the zone then fall over swinging at the two strike pitch in the dirt…cept Avila who just took 3 down the middle

    1. And since they aren’t working the count, he is on his way to pitching an easy complete game – only 68 pitches through 6.

  8. Fister has been really good. Postseason form good. What a shame to waste pitching like this. With a lineup like this. The Tigers could be 40 over .500 and I’d still decry stuff like this.

  9. I know he is young and with few ABs, but so far this Castellanos kid has not impressed. Am I alone in that thought?

    1. No, with the caveat that I didn’t expect him to impress. He’s been OK. Didn’t expect thunder and lightning. One season in AAA.

    2. Bad move bringing him in to pinch hit. When they brought in Will Smith Detroit should have countered with Tommy Lee Jones.

  10. with an upper cut swing like that how in the world did you get this far. plus you stop your swing 3/4 of the way around….ah Tiger fundementals !!!

  11. What if the Tigers could do what Hosmer just did. That would be nice.

    Torii – OMG.

    So Fister walks the next guy. Ugh.

    1. They just bunt well as a team. Fister and Avila are good on bunts, nothing has been particularly at Cabrera.

  12. hey Fister, Great job…to bad the Pussycat offense was here agaig today for you….they should have let you hit in that Castellono spot, he has a Little League swing

  13. Cabrerra is still at 50%..sure glad we thow him out there everyday…I mean Mumbles wouldn’t want to hurt his feelings !

    1. I give them credit for making it interesting the whole way through. Too bad it ended the way it did. It shouldn’t overshadow one of the best defensive plays of the season, Hunter’s throw from RF to 3B. A career highlight play.

        1. Yeah, very exciting, good mention and reminder. I can’t complain that this one wasted my time, not at all.

  14. as much as I hate losing…the lack of effort by guys getting millions of dollars grinds me!!! Especially just going thru the motions batting……..

  15. that was insane! why send fielder home against A. Gordon? The guy is known to have a cannon for an arm. There was just no reason for that.

  16. Shouldn’t have sent Prince, no way. Wonder what Brookens and Leyland will have to say about this. Unbelievable. They never learn, apparently.

    1. Leyland will say he agrees with the decision, it takes two perfect throws to get him (notice how many “perfect throws” Detroit seems to inspire?), gotta tip your cap, blah blah blah.

      1. Plus a perfect tag. In reality, they would have nailed Prince with a bit of imperfection thrown in there. Prince has enough steam in the locomotive for two bases, but not three.

        1. Prince gave it his all though, that’s all you can ask for from him. I wonder how long before guys start “Lamonting” Brookens and ignoring his signs.

    1. I thought about that, and concluded that I wouldn’t want Prince out of the game at that point myself. But if you make that decision, you can’t then pretend that you *did* PR for Fielder, as the Tigers seem to have done.

      1. If you are losing by 1 run in the bottom of the ninth, you shouldn’t be thinking about later. Get a runner on who can take the extra base on a hit and then worry about later later. But maybe Fielder has a consecutive inning streak that is at stake as well?.

        1. No, Fielder can’t have a consecutive inning streak going, I don’t think. Pretty sure Tuiasosopo has replaced him at 1B with several innings to play, to mention at least one instance.

          1. I see you guises (!) point, but the difference between being down by a run and being tied is the difference between yes/no on PR for Fielder here. Tie game, sure, get Perez out there.

              1. Behind: Tie now, win later = keep Fielder. Don’t sacrifice him just to tie.

                Tied: Win now or take your chances later = PR for Fielder. Sacrifice him to win now.

  17. it’s nonsense/BS like this that makes you wonder if these guys can really contend. Fingers crossed that my current state of mind is wrong. Oh well, tomorrow is another game.

  18. Leyland will mumble…”Best third base coach ever”…now that Lamont retired from third…what is this the 25 or 28th guy thrown out at home plate this year!!!!

      1. It’s 19 now, we’re 2nd to Boston (23). What I can’t find is any kind of indication how many attempts at home vs successful attempts at home.

          1. Aha. Thanks.

            I can’t find any indication of attempts/success here, either. Memory tells me there have been very few close plays at the plate where the Tigers were successful offensively. (I remember one great slide by Hunter on a close scoring play.) A fair number where the throw home didn’t allow for any real play at the plate. Some of those were just good breaks for the Tigers who might have been thrown out otherwise.

            1. Brookens must have gotten sand in his eye and mistook him for Fielder.

              The XBT% column is interesting in that chart. That’s the percentage of times a runner successfully takes an extra base on a hit. Note that we are dead last in that category.

            2. And we weren’t good last year either, but are worse this season. Lamont only got 15 guys tossed out at home last year.

  19. At 5 games out with 14 left to play, the Indians are still very much alive, unfortunately. Harder news for KC, really. A win tomorrow would simplify things, at least, and allow the Tigers to claim an almost-draw for the season series with Royals. Aside from the Angels – and what’s up with that, if good pitching always beats good hitting? – KC has been the big pest.

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