Game 2015.82: Tigers at Mariners

Is it just me, or is Justin Verlander way the heck out of touch with reality? Here’s a quote from him yesterday: “There’s two ways that you can approach this. You can look at the fifth inning and think negatively. Or you can look at the rest of it and think positively.” … “Felt really good about it. It’s a shame that I kind of feel out of sync there in the fifth, but it’s my fourth start. Gotta keep that in mind.”

The 5th inning was not a “negative.” It was catastrophic. He once went entire seasons without an inning like that. Last season Justin Verlander was one of the worst full season starters in the majors, He’s quickly working his way back into that form.


So the Tigers finish the first half of the season 1 game above .500. And, other than Joba Chamberlain, no one has lost their job. Miguel Cabrera is on the shelf until late August, the only reliable starter (David Price) is also our biggest piece of trade bait, the bullpen remains a mess (as it has been for two years), and there are glaring holes at C and 3B, one of which should be a premium position in the AL.

I’ll say what everyone else is thinking but no one else has yet said. It’s time to become sellers. Let’s trade Price and Cespedes at the deadline for younger talent (hopefully a 3B), and shelf Cabrera for the rest of the year if we have to. We can build an offense next year around Cabrera, Martinez, and Martinez, and Iglesias can anchor an infield for years to come, but unless we get younger and cheaper, we’re going to be the Phillies soon.

TIGERS (career numbers off Iwakuma)

  1. Ian Kinsler, 2B (9-for-23, double, 3 HR, 2 walks, 5 K’s)
  2. Yoenis Cespedes, LF (10-for-24, 5 doubles, 3 HR, 6 K’s)
  3. Victor Martinez, DH (3-for-6, HR, 2 walks)
  4. J.D. Martinez, RF (0-for-3, 3 K’s)
  5. Alex Avila, C (0-for-9, walk, 2 K’s)
  6. Nick Castellanos, 3B (1-for-3, double, 2 K’s)
  7. Anthony Gose, CF (0-for-2, walk, K)
  8. Andrew Romine, 1B (3-for-7, K)
  9. Jose Iglesias, SS (1-for-5, 2 K’s)


  1. Coleman

    July 6, 2015 at 10:02 pm

    Memo to Mr. Brad Ausmus

    Re: Alex Avila batting 5th.

    Stop. Please stop. Now.

    –Sincerely, Coleman.

  2. Kaline fan

    July 6, 2015 at 10:20 pm

    Yes to Coleman, about Avila batting 5th seems ridiculous. But don’t agree with Kevin about completely sinking this season already. I don’t know about Cespedes, but dumping Price now? Maybe get a solid return, but —–no Cabrera, no Price —–who’s going to want to watch the rest of this season then?

  3. Coleman

    July 6, 2015 at 11:07 pm

    Simon is looking good tonight. And Castellanos hit a home run. How many times are you going to see both of those things in one night? I might have to stay up a little while longer…

  4. Coleman

    July 6, 2015 at 11:11 pm

    Wait, is THAT Martinez allowed to hit a home run?

    • Coleman

      July 6, 2015 at 11:11 pm

      Nevermind, all Martinezes are good to go!!

  5. Kaline fan

    July 6, 2015 at 11:15 pm

    JD continues to launch rockets, and Nick starting to hit!

  6. Coleman

    July 6, 2015 at 11:55 pm

    Even if we aren’t “sellers,” we might want to try to unload Simon. He was horrible in the 2nd half last season; he seems to already be on the downside of that hill this year. Would Buck Farmer or Whoever be any worse?

    • Kaline fan

      July 7, 2015 at 12:09 am

      You might be right on that; he’s probably on same level as Farmer now…

  7. Kaline fan

    July 7, 2015 at 12:07 am

    And guess who’s 3 for 3!

    • Coleman

      July 7, 2015 at 12:08 am

      He scorched that one.

  8. Coleman

    July 7, 2015 at 12:07 am

    I knew this inning would end badly for Seattle: runners on 1st and 2nd and nobody, out, and they catch a break because the #5 hitter is…Alex Avila. And they walk him. Thank you very much, kind Mariners.

  9. Kaline fan

    July 7, 2015 at 12:17 am

    Unfortunately, Kinsler can’t hit a fly ball = 2 DPs.

    • Coleman

      July 7, 2015 at 12:18 am

      Where’s that patented pop up power when we need it?

  10. Kaline fan

    July 7, 2015 at 12:29 am

    12 hits today, and we’re not done yet. Funny that with all the Tigers’ “fallbacks” this year, Detroit still leads MLB in team batting avg.—-actually several hitting categories.

  11. Coleman

    July 7, 2015 at 12:35 am

    And JD just missed a 2nd one by maybe 5 feet. Hopefully the All-Star break doesn’t slow him down!

    • Kaline fan

      July 7, 2015 at 12:42 am

      Maybe I’m wrong, but I was thinking right fielder had chance to catch it, but since it was JD, he expected it to go out, and just watched it. Anyone else think that?

      • Coleman

        July 7, 2015 at 12:50 am

        I thought that at first, but I think he was probably just hanging back and playing the ricochet.

  12. Kaline fan

    July 7, 2015 at 12:40 am

    Make that 4 for 4!

  13. KW

    July 7, 2015 at 12:42 am

    They should pull Castellanos right now and trade him before tomorrow’s game. I don’t think his value’s ever going to get any higher than it is right now!

    • Kaline fan

      July 7, 2015 at 12:43 am

      Good point, KW. Or maybe he’s actually showing us the future Casty??

  14. Kaline fan

    July 7, 2015 at 12:51 am

    18 hits, and not finished. MLB-best team avg must be like .280 now. And how did Miggy transfer his potency to all 9 in the order?? (except Kinsler…)

  15. Coleman

    July 7, 2015 at 12:58 am

    I still haven’t figured out how JD Martinez isn’t getting walked every time he comes to the plate. (Hint: that guy on deck is ALEX AVILA).

    • Kaline fan

      July 7, 2015 at 1:41 am

      Teams are gonna catch on soon. You’re exactly right: Ausmus has GOT TO STOP batting Avila 5th! ESPECIALLY with JD clean-up!

      • Coleman

        July 7, 2015 at 1:57 am

        If Castellanos is actually turning into that .280 hitter everyone was expecting, he would fit in very nicely behind JD. And then McCann.

        • KW

          July 7, 2015 at 2:13 am

          Let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

          • Kaline fan

            July 7, 2015 at 2:33 am

            Minnesota series this weekend should be telling for Nick, when he faces better pitching.

  16. Coleman

    July 7, 2015 at 1:00 am

    That’s 2 hits RH, 2 hits LH for V-Mart.

    • Kaline fan

      July 7, 2015 at 1:34 am

      I think (and hopefully) Vic’s coming into his normal, mid-season “killer-instinct-at-the-plate” full-healthy form. If he’s not over the hill (and I don’t think he is), then the past indicates that his BA will keep climbing, ’til he bumps it over .300 and stays there.

  17. jud

    July 7, 2015 at 3:00 am

    I am still reading the blog. I will chime in on the buyers/sellers. I vote for sell, because if they don’t Price will absolutely walk. He has the same opinion of Ausmus as we all do! Cespedes I think likes all his Latin teammates and DD might be able to afford him. Otherwise you get nothing for either of them…..i don’t think Casty, or Avila have any trade value. Kinsler can go ( we can’t afford to have him have any more 7 out games). Lots of teams would take Simon….No one would take one can afford him no matter how good he thinks his 0-4 is….in conclusion if DD doesn’t sell we are going to get stuck for a long long time…picture this team with no Price and no Cespedes and everyone else back…..81-81 would be stretching it

    • Kaline fan

      July 7, 2015 at 4:09 am

      Jud, you’re making good points. But Price hasn’t indicated for certain, that he will walk. He’s our proven tested ace; who we get for him —–well you never know —–may not click with Detroit. If David sticks, we’re in good or great shape. I would really like to avoid the fire sale this season.

  18. StorminNorman$

    July 7, 2015 at 8:57 am

    Great post Kevin – i agree 100% on all points. I believe this current roster is going to continue to show flashes of greatness (like last night’s offense), but fall back into stretches of mediocrity (or worse). I believe this team has more “ifs” than answers – with the most glaring being pitching and Cabrera’s health.

    If i were DD, i’d be looking at these next six games as my ‘buy or sell’ signal… if DET could sweep this series (no Hernandez), then four games with MIN – if DET could win 5 of the next 6, i’d stand-pat (to see what unfolds after AS break)…but anything less, and i’d be actively looking for the best packages for Price, Cespedes and Soria.

    HOU has a loaded farm system, and they’re desperately looking for another SP, bullpen piece and bat… LAA and LAD are also looking for a SP – and both of those teams could afford to re-sign either Price or Cespedes.

    i don’t think any team is going to want to give up anything for Kinsler or Castellanos.

  19. StorminNorman$

    July 7, 2015 at 4:48 pm

    in case you were wondering how Greene is doing in Toledo… after a good 1st start, he’s been, meh… since