Game 2014.35: Tigers 4, Orioles 1

Drew Smyly and the Tigers (22-12, 1st place) aim to clinch the series against Ubaldo Jimenez and the Orioles (20-16, 1st place). 

Some of us are old enough to actually remember a time before divisions. Leagues was leagues. I was around, but by the time I was a more fully aware young baseball fanatic, there was East and West. I would see the final standings of the recent past in the sports sections of these big “year in the news” almanac-like volumes (more about words and pictures than the old World Almanacs) and find coolness in the novelty of how it appeared to the eye. Of course, there were divisions back then in the sense that the expressions “first division” and “second division”  had arisen to describe the obvious. But consider how much more first place – the pennant! – meant then. (And the cellar was really, truly the cellar back then.) Finishing first was finishing on top of 9 other teams (and being rightfully rewarded for it). Right now, the Tigers are on top of 14 other teams. If this keeps up, I think I’m going to start posting “old style” AL standings. I really wouldn’t mind if baseball dispensed with divisions for purposes of standings. There are other ways to use divisions in the background for purposes of scheduling. I’m partial to the idea of “scheduling divisions” that actually change every year based on the results of the previous season. But that’s a story for another day, if ever. For now, we have East, West, and Central, along with closers and their precious saves, interleague play, the DH, and a few dozen other things you might look forward to dispensing with yourself. 

Today’s guess at the lineup is that it will be mostly the A team but not entirely. Worth at SS, Kelly in there somewhere, Holaday spelling Avila? Surprise us, Brad. Go Tigers. 

118 Comments

  1. StorminNorman$

    May 13, 2014 at 9:45 am

    i see Sanchez is scheduled to pitch Sunday against BOS…i wonder who’s going to get sent packing when he’s “activated”

    • Vince in MN

      May 13, 2014 at 3:30 pm

      Ray goes back to Toledo so he can start regularly.

      • Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

        May 13, 2014 at 3:45 pm

        A good stint in the show for Ray that will motivate him even more while he is in Toledo fine tuning his game to become genuine and tested starter. Small but important steps first.

        BTW, I am getting excited about this coming weekend series with the Red Sox. Looks like Little Ricky gets the start for the Sunday ESPN game. Another chance for him to make a statement to the national audience. I also look forward to seeing V-Mart bounce a couple off the left center field wall and Davis running on A.J.

        • Vince in MN

          May 13, 2014 at 4:14 pm

          Should be a good series. It will be interesting to see how Sanchez does on Sunday. Games in Boston always have the potential to be high scoring affairs, so I hope the bullpen is up to the mark this weekend.

          • Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

            May 13, 2014 at 5:04 pm

            Oops…I didn’t clearly read Stormin’s post. Ricky must pitch in the Saturday game….all three games are night games too.

          • Vince in MN

            May 13, 2014 at 6:01 pm

            Speaking of bullpens, with a day off (Thurs) I wonder if Smyly gets bumped back to relief this time through the rotation. Verlander is scheduled to pitch on Monday in CLE.

            • Vince in MN

              May 13, 2014 at 6:13 pm

              Best case (fantasy) scenario would be to jump out to a really huge lead tonight so Smyly could get pulled after five, allowing Coke, Miller and Reed to finish up (with Nathan to close if they make it close). That would mean Smyly would be available in relief Sat/Sun for the RSox series.

              • Smoking Loon

                May 13, 2014 at 7:57 pm

                Smyly is a starter, wants to be starter. Wishing him back to the bullpen is bullpen desperation. Desperate as things may be, I don’t wish to see Smyly wasted in the bullpen.

  2. StorminNorman$

    May 13, 2014 at 1:21 pm

    http://espn.go.com/blog/sweets.....-best-team

    some interesting stats cited on Porcello, Cabrera & VMart

  3. Vince in MN

    May 13, 2014 at 4:00 pm

    Duane Below pitched a nice game yesterday as Toledo swept 4 from Rochester (the starting pitching was good in all 4 games). It looks like his control has come back, and if all continues to go well maybe he makes the most sense as LH relief help when Coke is replaced. Unfortunately, he isn’t on the 40-man, so a promotion would likely ONLY come in the event of a DFA for Coke, although there are a couple of position players they could consider removing. In fact, none of our minor league relievers who are on the 40-man are doing particularly well, so it looks like whatever fixes are in the works (other than waiting for Hanrahan and Putkonen to heal) for the Tigers current bullpen woes, some kind of roster jiggling is will be needed.

  4. StorminNorman$

    May 13, 2014 at 5:38 pm

    Tonight’s lineup:
    vs RHP Ubaldo Jimenez for the O’s.
    1. Ian Kinsler, 2B
    2. Torii Hunter, RF
    3. Miguel Cabrera, DH
    4. Victor Martinez, 1B
    5. J.D Martinez, LF
    6. Austin Jackson, CF
    7 Nick Castellanos, 3B
    8. Alex Avila, C
    9. Andrew Romine, SS
    Starting pitcher: Drew Smyly

    • Smoking Loon

      May 13, 2014 at 11:10 pm

      A belated thank you, man.

  5. TIGERS RULE

    May 13, 2014 at 7:16 pm

    Looks like another unproductive game at the plate for Miggy ….. you ask why? Look at his numbers when he DH’s.

    • Coleman

      May 13, 2014 at 7:20 pm

      Don Kelly’s career stats at DH are better. I have no idea why they continue to do this once a week, unless Cabrera is hurting–which would explain some other things too.

      • Smoking Loon

        May 13, 2014 at 7:48 pm

        They do it to play Victor at 1B and rest Cabrera, obviously.

        • Coleman

          May 13, 2014 at 8:22 pm

          No other first baseman in baseball needs rested once a week.

          • Smoking Loon

            May 13, 2014 at 8:42 pm

            Other first baseman are, shall we say, a bit more athletic.

        • TIGERS RULE

          May 13, 2014 at 10:23 pm

          We have an off day coming on Thursday!

          • Smoking Loon

            May 13, 2014 at 10:31 pm

            Too long to wait. Miggy tires easily. It’s all the smiling. Wears a body down.

  6. StorminNorman$

    May 13, 2014 at 7:18 pm

    is it just me or has there been an high incidence of MLB injuries already this year? I believe MIA pitcher Fernandez will be the 18th pitcher w/Tommy John surgery this year.

    …need to develop a vaccine for DET to avoid the injury bug

    • Coleman

      May 13, 2014 at 7:21 pm

      Except one guy gets the placebo.

      • StorminNorman$

        May 13, 2014 at 7:35 pm

        many times that’s (the placebo) more effective than the real thing…so we’re good there too

        bailed out Jimenez there (Vmart running w/a K-guy at the plate) – he was up to 32 pitches already

  7. Vince in MN

    May 13, 2014 at 7:32 pm

    Hit and run with Martinez on first and two strikes on Jackson? Incredibly stupid play.

    • TIGERS RULE

      May 13, 2014 at 7:36 pm

      There is being aggressive on the base paths ….. it must have been another brain cramp for Smokey Jr.

    • StorminNorman$

      May 13, 2014 at 7:36 pm

      agreed! …for several reasons.

    • Smoking Loon

      May 13, 2014 at 7:47 pm

      Incredibly bad execution.

  8. Smoking Loon

    May 13, 2014 at 7:33 pm

    Um… Action Jackson can’t pull the trigger on what must have been a hit and run???

    Notice how many pitches Jackson fouls off to the right. He’s late a lot on hittable pitches.

  9. Smoking Loon

    May 13, 2014 at 8:12 pm

    Whoa Jackson!! Mighta saved the game with that catch. Some great D by Castellanos tonight, too.

  10. TIGERS RULE

    May 13, 2014 at 8:21 pm

    Looks like it is a lingering brain cramp!

    • Vince in MN

      May 13, 2014 at 8:23 pm

      We have to figure out a way to get Ausmus tossed out of the game NOW.

      • Smoking Loon

        May 13, 2014 at 10:33 pm

        Hey, Ausmus can’t make Jackson swing when he should or V. Martinez not swing when he shouldn’t. Execute or die.

        • Vince in MN

          May 14, 2014 at 5:26 am

          You don’t call that play with a leadfoot on first base. Dumb. Double dumb.

  11. Coleman

    May 13, 2014 at 8:24 pm

    Martinez caught stealing and Cabrera caught stealing. Who’s next, Magglio?

    • Vince in MN

      May 13, 2014 at 8:32 pm

      Avila if he gets another walk.

  12. Smoking Loon

    May 13, 2014 at 8:41 pm

    J.D. redeems himself, wow. Finally a short inning for Smyly.

  13. Vince in MN

    May 13, 2014 at 8:47 pm

    I’d like to see more Danny Worth at SS.

    • Smoking Loon

      May 13, 2014 at 8:56 pm

      I’d like to see less of Romine at the plate. Can’t Joyner help him? Can’t someone?

  14. Vince in MN

    May 13, 2014 at 8:49 pm

    Do they all get a free sack of White Castles if they finish the game in under three hours?

    • Smoking Loon

      May 13, 2014 at 10:18 pm

      Not much of an incentive these days, unless you mean literal white castles.

  15. Coleman

    May 13, 2014 at 8:50 pm

    I guess they didn’t get the memo that Ubaldo is no longer, you know, good.

  16. Coleman

    May 13, 2014 at 8:55 pm

    Too bad the bats went limp tonight; Smyly is dealing.

    • Vince in MN

      May 13, 2014 at 8:57 pm

      They were limp last time he pitched also, as I recall.

  17. Vince in MN

    May 13, 2014 at 9:00 pm

    Two on, none out. Time to try the old double steal.

    • Coleman

      May 13, 2014 at 9:01 pm

      Close. Gee thanks, Torii, you killed that rally.

      • Vince in MN

        May 13, 2014 at 9:03 pm

        From now on, when Hunter gets to 2nd base, he should be forced to wear ankle weights.

        • Smoking Loon

          May 13, 2014 at 9:13 pm

          He had no lead, reacted late, and misjudged the slightly wild pitch completely. Much, much worse than sending Martinez and Cabrera earlier. Much. No one to blame but Torii on that one. Although… where was the communication from the batter? Was there miscommunication?

          • Coleman

            May 13, 2014 at 9:21 pm

            Other than that, it was a good idea.

            • Smoking Loon

              May 13, 2014 at 9:33 pm

              Well-intended, surely.

  18. Vince in MN

    May 13, 2014 at 9:01 pm

    I can’t stand this anymore.

  19. Coleman

    May 13, 2014 at 9:01 pm

    You’ve got to throw your cap.

  20. Smoking Loon

    May 13, 2014 at 9:01 pm

    Oof. Little too impulsive there, Torii.

  21. TIGERS RULE

    May 13, 2014 at 9:06 pm

    Another excellent performance by one of our starters.

  22. Smoking Loon

    May 13, 2014 at 9:11 pm

    All right, Romine. All right, Miller. Hope lives.

  23. jud

    May 13, 2014 at 9:16 pm

    Jimenez owns the Tigers no matter who he pitches for…how ..simple he throws very few actual strikes…The Tigers have zero patience for those kind of pitchers

    • Coleman

      May 13, 2014 at 9:20 pm

      4.5 walks per 9, which makes him the 4th worst pitcher for walks. But you can’t walk a Tiger (they have only 88 walks, 2nd lowest in the AL. Oakland has 170).

      • Smoking Loon

        May 13, 2014 at 9:23 pm

        Great tonight. Give him credit. I do.

        • Smoking Loon

          May 13, 2014 at 9:34 pm

          Pitchers who throw too many “actual strikes” end up like Coke, jud.

  24. Smoking Loon

    May 13, 2014 at 9:22 pm

    Great pitching from the Orioles, Jimenez, O’Day. No mistakes. What can you say? Pitching always wins.

  25. Smoking Loon

    May 13, 2014 at 9:32 pm

    Pretty darn good, Justin Miller. I don’t think he’s going anywhere.

  26. Smoking Loon

    May 13, 2014 at 9:34 pm

    Avila ties the game!

    • Smoking Loon

      May 13, 2014 at 9:36 pm

      Oh! He was robbed of an inside-the-park HR there.

      • Smoking Loon

        May 13, 2014 at 9:36 pm

        Kelly golfs it into the RF seats!! 2-1 Tigers!

        • Coleman

          May 13, 2014 at 9:44 pm

          Time to cork the bottle of Smoking Loon, I think you’ve had enough.

        • Smoking Loon

          May 13, 2014 at 9:45 pm

          Torii silences the crowd! All tied up!

          • Smoking Loon

            May 13, 2014 at 9:49 pm

            Cabrera! Outta here! Tigers win Tigers win Tigers win!

            • Smoking Loon

              May 13, 2014 at 9:50 pm

              YEAAAAAAAAH!!

              • Smoking Loon

                May 13, 2014 at 9:52 pm

                Whoa! Victor didn’t even give me a chance!

              • Smoking Loon

                May 13, 2014 at 9:54 pm

                Just trying to trick Vince, Coleman. Worked well on the Tigers behalf. I might have to try this again some time.

  27. Coleman

    May 13, 2014 at 9:48 pm

    I knew Hunter would win that battle.

  28. Coleman

    May 13, 2014 at 9:50 pm

    That’s the Old Miggy!

  29. jud

    May 13, 2014 at 9:52 pm

    Miggy…hell ya!!!

  30. Coleman

    May 13, 2014 at 9:52 pm

    Geez Victor, you just made Cabrera’s shot look weak.

    • Smoking Loon

      May 13, 2014 at 9:53 pm

      Absolutely. Moon shot.

      • Smoking Loon

        May 13, 2014 at 9:58 pm

        Victor remains The Insurance Agent.

  31. TIGERS RULE

    May 13, 2014 at 9:53 pm

    KABOOM ….. KABOOM!!

  32. tbran

    May 13, 2014 at 9:53 pm

    When did the Os sign Papa Grande?

    • Smoking Loon

      May 13, 2014 at 9:57 pm

      Or Chris Perez.

  33. Coleman

    May 13, 2014 at 9:55 pm

    It’s nice to see another team play Blowpen.

  34. tbran

    May 13, 2014 at 9:57 pm

    those were two very legit bombs. looked like Miggy hit his well more than 400′

  35. Vince in MN

    May 13, 2014 at 10:00 pm

    A clown show turned into to high opera.

    • Smoking Loon

      May 13, 2014 at 10:06 pm

      Galileo. Galileo. Galileo figaro.

      • Smoking Loon

        May 13, 2014 at 10:36 pm

        Miggy’s HR went about 250′. It’s Camden Yards, tbran. Victor’s HR went out to Utah Street.

        • Coleman

          May 13, 2014 at 10:46 pm

          If you put it that way, Jones’ HR that barely snuck over the wall is maybe an out in Comerica (well. depending on who is playing left). Which would have given us a shutout.

          • Smoking Loon

            May 13, 2014 at 11:36 pm

            Ha, good point in parentheses.

  36. Smoking Loon

    May 13, 2014 at 10:01 pm

    Uh-oh. I detect actual strikes from Nathan.

  37. Smoking Loon

    May 13, 2014 at 10:05 pm

    Ah yes, sweet and snappy DP. What a win. WHAT a win. I love the bullpen. I love everyone.

  38. Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

    May 13, 2014 at 10:05 pm

    Sweet home Alabama! Replay helps the comeback!

    • Smoking Loon

      May 13, 2014 at 10:17 pm

      Rajai was safe. Moan on, Showalter and O’s fans.

    • William

      May 14, 2014 at 7:45 am

      Tommy Hunter played at the U of Alabama. Along with Alex Avila.

      Normally, I don’t like to see UA players bomb, but I will make an exception in this instance!

  39. TIGERS RULE

    May 13, 2014 at 10:06 pm

    How sweet it is ….. and we have JV going in a day game tomorrow.

  40. Vince in MN

    May 13, 2014 at 10:07 pm

    Finishing the game with a DP is poetic justice (cue Loon for some baseball haiku).

    • Coleman

      May 13, 2014 at 10:10 pm

      Avila walked
      base unstolen
      call overturned
      don’t walk Torii
      Oriole regret it

      OK, that’s more baseball punku.

      • Smoking Loon

        May 13, 2014 at 10:22 pm

        The silent bats
        Still hope in our despair
        Redemption

        • Coleman

          May 13, 2014 at 10:27 pm

          challenge accepted
          Silent bats awaken
          caps untipped remain

          • Smoking Loon

            May 13, 2014 at 10:37 pm

            I concede. No fair, though. That was actual haiku. I thought we were going with 4-6-3 baseball haiku.

            • Smoking Loon

              May 14, 2014 at 1:02 am

              I take that back. Not actual haiku, I don’t think. But still very good. Haiku spirit.

  41. Jerry the Tiger Fan

    May 13, 2014 at 10:07 pm

    versus Detroit??

    • Smoking Loon

      May 13, 2014 at 10:39 pm

      Are you answering in the form of question a la Jeopardy? You are correct, sir, “Everyone loses…” answered correctly, that’s Foregone Conclusions for $500.

  42. Coleman

    May 13, 2014 at 10:08 pm

    The key at bat of the game was Torii Hunter working that 9th inning walk (how often does he walk?).

    • Smoking Loon

      May 13, 2014 at 10:28 pm

      Let’s not forget the crucial catch by Jackson, a few other good plays (and great, like Castellanos), guts from Smyly, fine bullpen work, and the eye of Avila to start the rally.

      Did the 2013 Tigers steal second in the 9th even once last season? Keep pushin’ it on the bases, Tigers. I’m loving it and not bitter when it fails.

  43. Jerry the Tiger Fan

    May 13, 2014 at 10:09 pm

    Should have read does anybody have Ubaldo Jimenez’s career numbers versus Detroit? ??

    • Coleman

      May 13, 2014 at 10:14 pm

      They aren’t good at all actually.

    • Smoking Loon

      May 13, 2014 at 10:15 pm

      I recall a few good ones v. Tigers. Not sure why he’s always dissed here.

    • Coleman

      May 13, 2014 at 10:22 pm

      The Research Department says that in 16 starts against Detroit (not counting tonight) Ubaldo is 5-9 5.32 ERA, 1.561 WHIP.

      • Smoking Loon

        May 13, 2014 at 10:40 pm

        Maybe that’s why he’s always dissed here. I remember the good starts.

      • Vince in MN

        May 13, 2014 at 10:54 pm

        In years past, I seem to recall the Tigers working the count against him and getting a lot of walks. So far this year that hasn’t been an option against Jimenez or anybody else.

        The aggressive hitting approach has its pluses (.279 BA – 1st in AL), but the lack of walks lessens the OBA (.331 – 6th in AL). We’re third in SLG (.425) with only 31 HR (tied for 8th) though, so maybe the hacking is a better way to go.

  44. Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

    May 13, 2014 at 10:13 pm

    My first annotation in my scorebook on a game they shouldn’t have won.

  45. Coleman

    May 13, 2014 at 10:29 pm

    For all the fretting about the bullpen, our starting rotation has been stellar. Even our 5th starter. And 6th.

    • Smoking Loon

      May 13, 2014 at 10:41 pm

      The A’s series should be interesting. That’s you, C-Man.

      • Coleman

        May 13, 2014 at 10:49 pm

        The A’s starting pitching has been ridiculous. And while the Tigers have a better record, the A’s have a ridiculous +62 run differential (Detroit is 2nd best at +43). Baltimore, by the way, leads the East with a -8 run differential, and the Yankees are 2nd with a -13 run differential. The East looks weak this season.

    • Vince in MN

      May 13, 2014 at 10:44 pm

      24th QS tonight. Only OAK (27) and BOS (25) have more in AL.

  46. Pingback: Game 2014.36: Tigers at Orioles

  47. Kevin in Dallas

    May 14, 2014 at 12:09 am

    Listening now to the late innings (I watched them previously live). A few comments:

    1) There were nearly as many Tigers fans at Camden as Orioles’ fans.

    2) Dan’s “SAFE” call after the replay was incredible. I was on pins and needles during the replay, but it looks like they got it right. I wonder how the umps feel after that. Embarrassed? Or thankful?

    3) Don’t look now, but Miggy is 2nd in the AL in RBI. Considering his slow start, that’s a real testament to Kinsler, Davis, and Hunter.

    4) The strike to get to 1-2 on Hunter was nasty. What an AB to work a walk after that. You think he wants a ring before he retires?

    5) Let’s try not to get so down, we can’t lead by 3 every inning. But it sure does make for good theater if you’re checking in late.

    • Smoking Loon

      May 14, 2014 at 12:59 am

      Love replay.

      I was so tense during the final Hunter AB that I didn’t notice any particular pitch. I was steeling myself for the tough loss and thinking what a really great game it had been, or turned out to be, regardless.

      I want to lead by 3 every inning. I think I want great baseball, but what I really want is comfortable, easy baseball. I want the Tigers to play in the International League and dominate perennially.

  48. jud

    May 14, 2014 at 12:43 am

    Could Miller have saved his job tonight with 2 inn 0 runs?…its got to be down to Him or Coke for the extra spot doesn’t it???….

    • Smoking Loon

      May 14, 2014 at 12:55 am

      a) Yes, and b) Always hard telling, isn’t it?

      The Orioles have one scary lineup. 2 runs in 2 games, wow, Tigers.

      • Kevin in Dallas

        May 14, 2014 at 1:16 am

        Wow indeed.

  49. Jim EggersUSMC

    May 14, 2014 at 2:43 am

    Recall a time when I was new to this Tigers team, and everyone was saying wait till we get VMart back… ummm he ‘s way back!!

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