Game 2014.20: Tigers 10, Twins 6

Tonight the Tigers begin a 10 day, 8 game road trip through the Central time zone contingent of the Central Division. Below are the dates, times (in EST) and projected starters for the series. We see Jose Quintana again (already?) but otherwise we don’t face a lefty in the series until we close out the trip with the surprising successful  Jason Vargas (2-0, 1.54).

Because of the spacing of the off days, the Tigers will probably go through the road trip without a start by Drew “Back in the Bullpen” Smyly.

Tigers at Twins

Friday            Apr 25 8:10   Rick Porcello vs. Kevin Correia

Saturday        Apr 26 2:10   Anibal Sanchez vs. Phil Hughes

Sunday          Apr 27 2:10   Justin Verlander vs. Kyle Gibson

Monday         Apr 28   *off day*

Tigers at White Sox

Tuesday        Apr 29 8:10  Max Scherzer vs. Jose Quintana (L)

Wednesday    Apr 30 2:10  Rick Porcello vs. Erik Johnson

Thursday       Mar 1   *off day*

Tigers at Royals

Friday            Mar 2 8:10    Anibal Sanchez vs. Jeremy Guthrie

Saturday        Mar 3 7:10    Justin Verlander vs. James Shields

Sunday          Mar 4 2:10    Max Scherzer vs. Jason Vargas (L)

Friday’s game against Kansas City starts a string of 13 consecutive games with no time off.

The Twins have been a mild surprise so far this season: after beginning the season with preseason predictions of 100 losses and an 0-2 start, they have gone 11-8 including taking 2-of-3 from Tampa Bay in their previous series, the last two games of which saw them put up 15 runs on 24 hits.

Postgame – Tigers 10, Twins 6

In a season that has so far been full of games that could have gone either way, the Tigers came out on the winning end of a game that could have been a blowout and could have been blown.  Detroit got to starter Kevin Correia early, starting the 2nd with a 2-base error, a Castellanos home run, and a single. When Romine doubled to deep center (Romine?) the 2nd had the loos of a classic big inning. But Avila was sent home from first, was thrown out (and injured) and the Twins got out of the inning only down 2-0.

No matter, the Tigers came back in the 3rd and put up a big inning in earnest going through the whole lineup and scoring 7 (Cabrera actually was responsible for all 3 outs in the inning). Then all that was left was a little nail-biting as five bullpen pitchers tried to finish up the job for the endurance-challenged Rick Porcello.

Thumbs Up

  • Rajai Davis. Davis had his 3rd consecutive multi-hit game. He hits at the top of the lineup, he hits at the bottom of the lineup, he hits for what is now a .354 average.
  • Nick Castellanos. He continues to show power; his shot in the 2nd set the tone for the game.
  • Rick Porcello. Another solid start against, a hot Twins lineup.

Thumbs Down

  • Rick Porcello. Kid Rick seems to run out of gas about the 6th inning every game. Even with a very good 5 innings, that leaves a whole lot of bullpen time.
  • Dave Clark. Maybe Gene Lamont called that one from the bench. It sure did conjure up visions of Lamont and Tom Brookens when Clark sent slowster Alex Avila home from 1st on Romine’s double. There is an old rule of thumb about never making the first out of the inning at home. I generally like the aggressiveness on the bases of this year’s Tigers, but I think this was the wrong person and wrong situation for it.


  1. Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

    April 25, 2014 at 6:55 pm

    Many thanks Coleman for posting the rotation. We will be up in KC for the 3-game series. Gonna take two of our exchange students from Germany and Denmark for their first Tiger game as well as meet my brothers and a high school buddy there. Let’s hope for good weather and good Tiger play!


    April 25, 2014 at 9:02 pm

    We are going to knock their outfield wall down before the end of the night!

    • Smoking Loon

      April 25, 2014 at 11:52 pm

      Nice to see the Tigers really beat up on a starter for a change.

  3. jud

    April 25, 2014 at 9:07 pm

    Be nice to win a first game of a series for a change!..not many of those so far!

  4. jud

    April 25, 2014 at 9:15 pm

    Were talkin Avila running here Brookens, I mean Clark….Actually I thought it was a good send for the situation!…

    • Smoking Loon

      April 25, 2014 at 11:54 pm

      I liked the send, too.

  5. jud

    April 25, 2014 at 9:16 pm

    How about Romine …maybe all he needed was a chance to play..but the dude is solid O and D so far!

    • Smoking Loon

      April 25, 2014 at 11:56 pm

      The O isn’t convincing as yet. The D is. Romine gets some O together (I’m not terribly optimistic about this) and they might send Mr. Shins packing.

      • Smoking Loon

        April 26, 2014 at 12:38 am

        Speaking of excitement (see below), the good kind, Romine getting into 3B ahead of Plouffe’s dive to the bag was pretty exciting.

  6. jud

    April 25, 2014 at 10:11 pm

    Why can’t more games be this 9-1 boring!

    • StorminNorman$

      April 25, 2014 at 10:31 pm

      excitement has seemed to set in


    April 25, 2014 at 10:17 pm

    Is it too early and/or do we have enough runs to call it a W?

  8. Vince in MN

    April 25, 2014 at 10:22 pm

    Typical Porcello – gassed at 90 pitches. Glad Ausmus pulled him.

    • Smoking Loon

      April 25, 2014 at 11:45 pm

      Yes and yes. Still surprises me when that happens, especially without multiple stressful innings and with a big lead.

      Does any lead feel safe with this bullpen?

  9. jud

    April 25, 2014 at 10:28 pm

    The question really is…..Is this blowpen proof yet?????”

  10. StorminNorman$

    April 25, 2014 at 10:30 pm

    not watching, but freep is suggesting injury to Avila (shin contusion) and possibly to Porcello (apparently Ausmus and trainer visited the mound to check on him…prior to giving up the HR to Plouffe)

    can’t afford to lose any pitchers… other than Coke & Reed

    • Smoking Loon

      April 26, 2014 at 12:00 am

      Can’t afford to lose any pitchers… other than the entire bullpen.

  11. Brad in ct

    April 25, 2014 at 10:42 pm

    Obviously middle relief is still a problem. Not sure if there is an answer out there. Robbie Ray in a month or so? If something isn’t done a repeat of last year is what we are looking at.

    • Smoking Loon

      April 26, 2014 at 12:48 am

      I don’t think they want to rush Ray, especially into emergency relief. There’s a boatload of guys in Toledo to try out, and it won’t take eye-popping stats there at this rate.


    April 25, 2014 at 10:53 pm

    Doesn’t a 5 or more run lead qualify for a Coke appearance?

    • Smoking Loon

      April 26, 2014 at 12:44 am

      I was actually expecting to see Coke late, followed by Al-Al after the out and several runs, but that’s because I had somehow forgotten about Nathan.

  13. Mark

    April 25, 2014 at 11:00 pm

    Even with Kinsler’s error I like him way more than Fielder. He is hitting .296 to Fielder’s .200 with the same amount of home runs (2). Kinsler has 3 stolen bases compared to Fielder’s wait for it… 0.

    • StorminNorman$

      April 25, 2014 at 11:02 pm

      …and there’s also that huge contract disparity

      • Smoking Loon

        April 25, 2014 at 11:58 pm

        There’s also Kinsler’s play on the Angels’ 3-error play, and a bunch of things along those same lines. We were proud of Prince for running out ground balls.

        • Coleman

          April 26, 2014 at 12:20 am

          Yeah, but Fielder hasn’t missed a game in like WAY long!!

          • Smoking Loon

            April 26, 2014 at 12:34 am

            You got me. It’s Fielder, hands down. We got rooked.

  14. jud

    April 25, 2014 at 11:06 pm

    Lets start throwing Kelly out of the pen…can’t be any worse than these clowns!!!

    • Smoking Loon

      April 25, 2014 at 11:47 pm

      I was thinking the same. I thought they were going to run out tonight. Shouda left Krol out there until he blew up, really.

  15. jud

    April 25, 2014 at 11:09 pm

    Robbie Ray will be one of the nextl 1 or 2 pitchers to enter the rotation…he wil not be a bullpen pitcher…you read it here!!!l

  16. Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

    April 25, 2014 at 11:15 pm

    Isn’t it nice not playing in the Metro Dome anymore!

  17. jud

    April 25, 2014 at 11:18 pm

    In fact if the Tigers get desperate enough I say they put Smyly back in the pen and bring up a starter..maybe Ray…not everyone can pitch out of the pen and Smyly is very good at it.

  18. Smoking Loon

    April 25, 2014 at 11:49 pm

    I object to Smyly being left out of the rotation.

  19. Smoking Loon

    April 26, 2014 at 12:41 am

    Castellanos cost himself another hit by admiring the ball that Dozier got to instead of concentrating on first base. He looks like a veteran in the batter’s box and a rookie everywhere else. Not a serious complaint.

  20. Kevin in Dallas

    April 26, 2014 at 1:06 am

    Fernando Rodney is in the middle of an epic blowpen right now versus Texas. Entered with a 4 run lead –

    Ground Out


    Beltre lines a shot, speared by Smoak for a inning ending DP. Was literally inches away from clearing the bases.

    Everyone goes through it.

    • Kevin in Dallas

      April 26, 2014 at 1:08 am

      Oh, and this was after the Rangers’ pen gave up 4 in the bottom of the 8th.

      Everyone goes through it. Well, except for the Yankees for the past 17 years.

  21. Jim EggersUSMC

    April 26, 2014 at 2:58 am

    Loved watching the meltdown by our favorite red azs reliever, young mr f- bombing Balfour. ( Rays v. Pale Hose)

  22. jud

    April 26, 2014 at 3:38 am

    Porcello is 1st or 2nd in almost every pitching catagory on the Tiger staff…the fact that he can’t go 120-130 pitches like Scherzer and JV at only 26 years old is totally meaningless…

  23. Kevin in Dallas

    April 26, 2014 at 11:41 am

    Scherzer passing on the Tigers $144M offer was the cover story for this week’s SI. It’s a great (short) read. A few tidbits:

    1) Max on FIP – “Great for understanding the luck inherent in the game – not so useful as a scouting tool to beat the Cleveland Indians.”

    2) When Max was a freshman at Mizzou he learned that the fulcrum of an at-bat happens at 1-1. Last year’s league-wide OBP after 2-1 was .387; after 1-2 was .228. Scherzer led the league with a 74.3% strike percentage at 1-1.

    I picked up Sports Illustrated last year after a 15 or so year absence. Well worth it.