Game 2013.155: White Sox at Tigers

Detroit Tigers: 90-64, 1st Place (6.0 ahead of Cleveland).  Magic Number: 3

Well, it looks like the 5th time was the charm. Max Scherzer is now a proud 20-game winner, and had a sip of the bubbly to celebrate…apparently he is saving the magnum of Stroh’s for the postseason. Max also became only the 11th Tiger ever to record 20 wins and 200 strikeouts in a season, joining Jusin Verlander (2011), Jack Morris (1983, 1986), Joe Coleman (1971, 1973), Mickey Lolich (1971, 1972), Denny McLain (1968), and Hal Newhouser (1945, 1946). Quite a list to be on.

The Tigers reduced their magic number to 3; as expected, the Astros could not handle the Indians, although I suppose you have to give them credit for losing efficiently in 7 innings. It looks like the home celebration may indeed be an iffy proposition.

Cleveland has now unseated Texas for the 2nd wild card spot, and with an easy remaining schedule could very well hang on to it. The Tigers have to love the idea of having Cleveland in the playoffs, since Cleveland seems capable of beating anyone…except Detroit. I am a bit melancholy about the prospect of a playoff without Yankees though, since they were so good about playing the Washington Generals to the Tigers’ Globetrotters. Besides, I suspect there is some phenomenon–let’s call it Coleman’s Law, until we figure out the real name–whereby the more one team dominates another in the regular season, the less likely they are to beat them in the postseason.

You’ve got to love this time of year. Tampa guts out 18 innings against the Orioles, then knocks them off again several hours later this afternoon (Baltimore is done). Kansas City, continuing to be a Royal pain, kicks Texas while they are down, and clings to wild card contention. Oakland continues bombing teams, blanking the Twins 11-0 (they have scored 7 runs or more in 8 of their 19 September games. Where did that come from?). The National League Central refuses to decide itself, going into the home stretch with a three-team race. Fun times.

*****

Jose Iglesias is out again with his day-to-day hand bruise. He is also still the reigning Web Gem, and the subject of an ESPN Sport Science segment, which breaks down the play. It’s worth a watch.

*****

Today’s Player of the Pre-game: Matt Tuiasosopo. This may be the last, best time for Tui Time. With new Left Fielder Jhonny Peralta prepping to join the team, Tui needs to stake his claim on the LF platoon. He is one of the few Tigers who hit Sale well (4-for-11),

Tonight’s Tea for Tui Lineup:

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

50 Comments

  1. Coleman

    September 21, 2013 at 7:37 pm

    Um, yeah. I suspect Tui Time is over.

    • Vince in MN

      September 21, 2013 at 8:18 pm

      It looks like even if Peralta has an iron glove in LF, he is our RH bat out there by default.

      • Smoking Loon

        September 21, 2013 at 11:59 pm

        If I’m not mistaken, here are your 2012 postseason position players for the Tigers:

        Avila
        Laird
        Fielder
        Infante
        Worth
        Peralta
        Santiago
        Cabrera
        Young
        Jackson
        Dirks
        Kelly
        Berry
        Garcia

        That’s 14 guys. The Tigers used 11 pitchers. Now, the 2013 Tigers have never used 12 pitchers in a 19-game stretch – I think that goes without even looking up. So why would they carry more than 11 pitchers into the postseason, or less than 14 non-pitchers? The Tigers barely have the arms to fill 11 spots. Thus, as far as I can tell, the 2013 version of the above will be:

        Avila
        Pena
        Fielder
        Infante
        Iglesias
        Santiago
        Peralta
        Cabrera
        Dirks
        Tuiasosopo
        Kelly
        Jackson
        Hunter
        Martinez

        That is what’s working now and what has worked, plus Peralta. No one has to be dropped to add Peralta. If you *wanted* to drop someone, Tui for instance, who is it you want in there instead? Perez to pinch run? Castellanos (no chance)?

        • Smoking Loon

          September 22, 2013 at 12:07 am

          Iron glove in LF loses tonight’s game:

          http://wapc.mlb.com/play/searc.....Tuiasosopo

          2 other notable plays as well.

          • Smoking Loon

            September 22, 2013 at 12:50 am

            “Now, the 2013 Tigers have never used 12 pitchers in a 19-game stretch – I think that goes without even looking up.”

            Wrong. Obviously. Sorry.

            The salient point is that if the Tigers only had 7 guys in the bullpen at any given time during the season, half of them at any given time of dubious help to begin with, why would they need to carry one more for a max of 19 games, and especially with an option of adding a superior pitcher (starter), who can pitch long, to that mix?

            • Vince in MN

              September 22, 2013 at 12:02 pm

              11-man staff is fine for 19-games in a 4-week span.
              Tui is an automatic out, so maybe you do add Perez as a pinch runner/extra IF, especially considering Miggy’s condition, which looks like it is going to persist.

              • Smoking Loon

                September 22, 2013 at 11:21 pm

                I wouldn’t be totally surprised to see Perez instead of Tui. That’s a real glob of infielders, though. Peralta can still play SS and 3B, you know.

  2. Vince in MN

    September 21, 2013 at 7:37 pm

    Not as much as a loud foul from Tui in weeks.

    • Smoking Loon

      September 21, 2013 at 11:30 pm

      Yeah. Bizarre. Helluva night in LF, though.

  3. Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

    September 21, 2013 at 7:52 pm

    Little Ricky is on a roll.

    • Vince in MN

      September 21, 2013 at 8:16 pm

      His Ks are up quite a bit this year and his WHIP is the lowest in his career. He’s better than his ERA indicates as he has only given up 2 unearned runs. If you take away a 3 or 4 bad outings, he has been very very good in the others. 17 QS so far, which is pretty good from a guy who seems to frequently run out of gas after 90 or so pitches.

      • Vince in MN

        September 21, 2013 at 8:50 pm

        What I said about pitch counts.

        • Smoking Loon

          September 22, 2013 at 12:27 am

          How do you keep this guy out of the postseason rotation, though? Can’t they go with 5 starters? Is that against the law? For a 7-game series, you line it up so that Sanchez and Scherzer get 6 and 7.

          • Vince in MN

            September 22, 2013 at 12:11 pm

            The thing is, with all the days off, you don’t need a 5-man rotation. In fact it probably isn’t even efficient use of personnel, especially if you want to go with an 11-man staff (yes). The best thing would be if JV manned-up and volunteered to go to the pen for the duration. In the old days, when egos weren’t on the line, guys would come in and pitch when needed and didn’t insist on the sanctity of their role.

            • Smoking Loon

              September 22, 2013 at 11:19 pm

              True, no need for a 5-man rotation. But when you have 5 good starting pitchers… If Verlander is the weak link, that’s a pretty strong weak link. Using starters to start is an acceptable use of personnel. I don’t expect anything radical from JL, however.

  4. Vince in MN

    September 21, 2013 at 8:00 pm

    In a few years it will be interesting to evaluate the trade that brought Iglesias to the Tigers and sent Garcia to the WSox.

    • Smoking Loon

      September 21, 2013 at 11:31 pm

      You said it. I’m all over Iglesias, exciting player, but he’s still in AAA as a hitter, and the injuries might be a recurring theme. Little Miggy might well grow up to be Big Miggy.

  5. judpma

    September 21, 2013 at 9:08 pm

    what I don’t understand is how can Sale be 11-13, Santana 9-9, when the Tigers face these two they can’t touch them and the have 22 losses????

    • Vince in MN

      September 21, 2013 at 9:15 pm

      Chi has no offense.

      • Vince in MN

        September 21, 2013 at 9:57 pm

        And their bullpen kinda sucks.

  6. Kevin in Austin

    September 21, 2013 at 9:22 pm

    At the Texas game, they may actually win one here.

    Let’s go BOOBSs.

  7. Kevin in Austin

    September 21, 2013 at 9:24 pm

    Let’s got TOOBs.

  8. Vince in MN

    September 21, 2013 at 9:38 pm

    I guess its a pretty sure thing now that Bonderman won’t be on the payroll next year.

  9. Kevin in Austin

    September 21, 2013 at 9:52 pm

    Porcello will be pitching in the late innings in the playoffs. Not Bondo.

  10. Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

    September 21, 2013 at 10:04 pm

    Never die!

  11. Smoking Loon

    September 21, 2013 at 10:19 pm

    Wow. Nearly beyond wow. If the Tigers win this one now in extras…

    • Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

      September 21, 2013 at 10:23 pm

      I wonder how the Hawk is handling this one?

      • StorminNorman$

        September 21, 2013 at 10:27 pm

        that thought (of Hawk’s reaction) immediately brought a smile to my face…

        • William

          September 21, 2013 at 11:19 pm

          Amen. Delicious thought right there.

        • Smoking Loon

          September 21, 2013 at 11:20 pm

          Yes, yes. He makes every win over the Sox sweeter. Oddly, we kind of owe him for this.

          PUT IT ON THE BOARD!

  12. StorminNorman$

    September 21, 2013 at 10:25 pm

    pretty amazing comeback – regardless of how this ends!

    I guess those ‘give away’ runs Bondo got tagged for weigh a little heavier if DET doesn’t pull a ‘W’ out of this game

    • Smoking Loon

      September 21, 2013 at 11:28 pm

      I’ve gotten in the habit of mentally preparing a game post in my head every game, even when it’s not “my” series. For this one, it was already “written” as another feast or famine famine, shame to waste such good pitching rap. Altered a bit by crap defense in the 8th and Bonderman in the 9th.

      Even when the Tigers had scored a couple in the 9th, I was still thinking of how Leyland was going to feel about having brought out Bonderman for the 9th if the Tigers ended up losing 6-3.

      • Vince in MN

        September 22, 2013 at 11:50 am

        Or lost 7-6 in extras.

  13. judpma

    September 21, 2013 at 10:25 pm

    frickin AMAZING!!!

  14. Angus

    September 21, 2013 at 11:00 pm

    Two scoreless innings from Al-Al. Come on Miggy.

    • Smoking Loon

      September 21, 2013 at 11:00 pm

      He’s out.

  15. Angus

    September 21, 2013 at 11:01 pm

    Oops. Go Donkey Don.

  16. Smoking Loon

    September 21, 2013 at 11:11 pm

    TIGERS WIN~!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Infante!!!!

    • Smoking Loon

      September 21, 2013 at 11:13 pm

      There have been some good wins this season, but nothing like this. I’m going to watch this one 10 times this offseason, probably. I could only listen tonight, but I’ll watch it as soon as it becomes available to watch. Wow.

      • Vince in MN

        September 22, 2013 at 12:14 pm

        So, you are really going to watch the first eight inning of this game over and over again?

  17. Vince in MN

    September 21, 2013 at 11:11 pm

    Omar god!

    • Smoking Loon

      September 21, 2013 at 11:17 pm

      Dirks! Hunter! Alburquerque! Porcello! Benoit! Martinez! Tui! Cabrera! Avila! Infante! Jackson! Santiago! Holaday! Fielder! Kelly!

      DIRKS! HUNTER! PORCELLO!

      • Smoking Loon

        September 22, 2013 at 1:51 am

        See what can happen when Fielder is HELD at 3B on a Martinez double?

  18. Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

    September 21, 2013 at 11:14 pm

    That should pump them up!

  19. Coleman

    September 21, 2013 at 11:14 pm

    That’s the White Sox being the White Sox. Fun win!

    • Smoking Loon

      September 21, 2013 at 11:22 pm

      We can skip the World Series. Tigers are the undisputed champions of baseball. No one here would disagree, and that settles it.

      • JimEggersUSMC

        September 22, 2013 at 12:55 am

        Works for me, but I do love me some Postseason baseball….

        • Smoking Loon

          September 22, 2013 at 1:50 am

          Yes, but then we run the risk of the Tigers losing a series. How about if the rest of teams play on for the honor of runner-up?

  20. Smoking Loon

    September 22, 2013 at 2:07 am

    The Nacho Fan has stepped forward, Are we to believe him? (I do, myself.)

    http://www.motownsports.com/fo.....o-fan.html

  21. StorminNorman$

    September 22, 2013 at 10:17 am

    http://hardballtalk.nbcsports......er=ya5nbcs

    appears to be classic ‘good news, bad news’ scenario taken from last night’s ‘good news comeback’

    moving forward, i wrestle with ‘what concerns me more’… a) Cabrera injuries or b) the bullpen