Pregame 4: Baltimore Orioles at Detroit Tigers

It was a dark and rainy afternoon, and the Tigers continued their winning ways, cruising to a 10-4 victory over Baltimore.

The highlight of the game of course was Miguel Cabrera’s 2-run home run in the 8th inning, which also just happened to be his 2,000th career hit.

Ty Cobb, Rogers Hornsby, Mel Ott, Joe Medwick, Jimmie Foxx, Robin Yount, and Alex Rodriguez. That’s the short list Cabrera joins of players with 2,000 hits before their 31st birthday.

While thy Tigers went to 3-0 and kept Brad Ausmus perfect in his managerial career, Ausmus did lose his perfect record in challenges when the umpires refused to overturn a call at 2nd. Ausmus is still confused as to why the umpires ruled the way they did, as was I, the Baltimore announcers, and countless other people. I would hate to think that the powers that be have decided that too many calls are being overturned, and that is effecting the decisions.

Today the Tigers go for #4 with Rick “The One They Kept” Porcello making his debut. Porcello has a history of starting slowly:


  • 6.58 Mar/Apr
  • 4.51 Overall

BA Against

  • .322 Mar/Apr
  • .286 Overall


  • 1.581 Mar/Apr
  • 1.389 Overall

At one point I painstakingly looked up how Porcello did based on game temperature for a season, and when the temperature was low he did seem to do worse, no matter which time of the season it was, so it is possible the March/April numbers are really just cold weather numbers. Does his sinker not sink in the cold? Does he have trouble with his grip in the cold? It’s something to watch for.

Game time temperature should be in the low 40s.

Today’s Chillin’ Donkey Starting Lineup:

  1. Kinsler, 2B
  2. Hunter, RF
  3. Cabrera, 1B
  4. Martinez, DH
  5. Jackson, CF
  6. Avila, C
  7. Gonzalez, SS
  8. Kelly, 3B
  9. Davis, LF

DET P: Rick Porcello (RHP)

BAL P: Bud Norris (RHP)



    April 5, 2014 at 1:05 pm

    Why no Nick C. in today’s starting line-up? The only valid reason would be a physical ailment.

    • Smoking Loon

      April 6, 2014 at 12:02 am

      Kelly will be subbing for him vs. RHP from time to time, no big deal. They can always get him in the game later if they need his bat.

  2. jud

    April 5, 2014 at 1:19 pm

    Special Assistant Jim Leyland prolly recommended giving Nick C the day off..After all he had played two days in arow

  3. jud

    April 5, 2014 at 1:45 pm

    Can’t throw…can’t can’t steal with him batting…..but frames pitches well!

    • Smoking Loon

      April 5, 2014 at 11:58 pm

      Yeah, I wasn’t very happy to see Avila fouling off pitches when Jackson was running (and then grounding into the DP!). They’ve got to get Avila out of that spot in the order, don’t want him batting right behind Jackson anymore.

  4. jud

    April 5, 2014 at 1:55 pm

    Donkey Don off to a blazing start…atta boy!


    April 5, 2014 at 2:01 pm

    What happen to “manufacturing runs”? Davis should have been bunting.

  6. jud

    April 5, 2014 at 2:28 pm

    In our Sadistic Stat column Avila gets a Sac by striking out an Jacksom stealing second

  7. Coleman

    April 5, 2014 at 2:45 pm

    Hunter spoiled some nice small ball by hitting it too far.

  8. Kevin in Dallas

    April 5, 2014 at 3:10 pm

    35-5 here we come.

  9. jud

    April 5, 2014 at 3:11 pm



    April 5, 2014 at 3:26 pm

    Two thumbs up to Ricky P. for a very nicely pitched game!

  11. jud

    April 5, 2014 at 3:30 pm

    This is going to one on many good outings we are going to see from Porcello…his breakout year!


    April 5, 2014 at 4:10 pm

    I really don’t understand why Coke is on this team?

  13. StorminNorman$

    April 5, 2014 at 4:14 pm

    i heard where Coca Cola was coming out with yet another new coke, this one called “phil ‘effin’ coke”

    • StorminNorman$

      April 5, 2014 at 4:22 pm

      “Coke adds life”…to a struggling team

      • Smoking Loon

        April 5, 2014 at 11:52 pm

        But we knew about Coke. Nathan’s struggles are more of surprise.

  14. jud

    April 5, 2014 at 4:16 pm

    I can’t wait to here from the Tiger brass how they were impressed by Phil…or they will make excuses for him again and again and again!….I saw him 4 times in spring training and each time he was exactly like this….he has to have some dirt on someone on the front office..he is using to stay on this team…

  15. StorminNorman$

    April 5, 2014 at 4:24 pm

    Nathan’s confidence level has taken a serious beating his last two outings

  16. jud

    April 5, 2014 at 4:34 pm

    Wow can I breathe now!!..the 2013 blowpen rears its ugly head after a great job by Porcello and Reed….did I mention Coke sucks!!!!!! Abd the brass knows it!


    April 5, 2014 at 4:57 pm

    We should nickname Ausmus, Smokey Jr., because his decision making is not much different. It sure isn’t what he was preaching before the season started. Why would you take out a pitcher (Reed) who was doing an excellent job, even though a lefty was coming up. Who gives a rats ass, you stick with the guy who is pitching well irregardless.

    • Smoking Loon

      April 5, 2014 at 11:51 pm

      It wasn’t just any lefty coming up. It was Chris Davis. Coke kept him in the park, at least. I’m not so sure Reed would have.


        April 6, 2014 at 12:08 pm

        One run only makes it 7 – 2, if Davis did go yard.

  18. scott

    April 5, 2014 at 6:23 pm

    Tigers would have a helluva team if they only had a bullpen……..any kind of ‘pen………pleeeeze?

  19. Vince in MN

    April 5, 2014 at 10:21 pm

    Uh oh:
    “That’s baseball,” Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said. “That’s why there’s the saying, ‘It’s never easy.’ You think 7-1 is safe, but it’s just never safe.”

    Yeah Brad, sometimes you just have to tip your cap.

    • Vince in MN

      April 6, 2014 at 10:05 am

      Leyland may be gone, but the old script writer is still there.

  20. Smoking Loon

    April 5, 2014 at 10:33 pm

    Now, now. Let’s be nice. They won. They’re 4-0.

  21. Smoking Loon

    April 5, 2014 at 11:28 pm

    That 9th inning was like a whole game in itself. Kinda feels like a split of a doubleheader. Win 7-1, lose 5-0.

    Maybe the the “Coke experience” will impart a lesson: No matter the score, 9th inning, Nathan available = Go to Nathan, go directly to Nathan, do not pass Coke. Don’t “give guys some work.” Leaving Coke in to face Hardy could use some ‘splainin.’ Of course, why Nathan didn’t fare any better than Coke to begin with could also use some explaining, particularly since the batters Nathan faced were (for crying out loud) Lombardozzi and Clevenger.

    The bloop hit off Al-Al, well, who can you blame? No one.

    Why was Hunter positioned as he was v. Lombardozzi? Isn’t “no doubles” the rule here, given score & base runners? Something of a miracle Hardy didn’t score, and for that I suppose Hunter’s theatrics and quickness at getting to and throwing in the ball deserve some credit. Orioles fans are undoubtedly criticizing Hardy for that one.

    Who is Clevenger to hit a double off of Nathan? The Tigers caught *another* break when the ball bounced into the stands. Lombardozzi scores otherwise. The irony of both breaks is that maybe it wouldn’t have mattered anyway. Nathan did (essentially) retire the last 3 batters he faced, and rather handily.

  22. Smoking Loon

    April 5, 2014 at 11:43 pm

    And then there’s the bright side, on top of the bright side of winning. Torii Hunter with all 5 RBI off Bud Norris, who actually pitched pretty well. Rajai Davis with a nice assist from LF. Stolen bases from both Davis and Austin Jackson. Don Kelly having a great day. Good work from Evan Reed. And last but not least, a fine start by Rick Porcello, and a good decision by Brad Ausmus to pull him exactly when he did (you could just see the air coming out of Porcello’s tires.)

    Our new closer picks up the save, and his name is Sixrun Lead. I like his chances.

  23. jud

    April 5, 2014 at 11:44 pm

    What a difference a day day your ERA is 0.00 and the next day its 81.00

    • Smoking Loon

      April 6, 2014 at 12:08 am

      Poor Alburquerque. Did nothing wrong, gets 1 ER for 0 IP.

  24. Smoking Loon

    April 6, 2014 at 12:09 am

    3 errors in 4 games for Tigers shortstops. It can only get better, right?

  25. jud

    April 6, 2014 at 12:58 am

    WHY Would you check the runner back to second with a runner on third and the ball pinning the runner to second just by its location..Gonzo is an American League Ss he has to know the speed of a former team mate….the other defensive liability is Hunter…got totally fooled on two more balls today, has dropped one, let a short flyball fall in yesterday when he let Kinsler race out to short right field…came in on the ball over his head in the ninth..almost one screw up each game so far….