Game 2016.43: Rays at Tigers

A few notes about the Second Inning (games 19-36):

– The Tigers went 6-12, marred by losing 11/12 at one point in time (I think we all remember that).

– The Hitters posted a slash line of .248/.314/.397 for an OPS of .711.

– The Pitchers posted an ERA of 5.25 with 121 Ks and 54 walks in 154 1/3 innings.

– Cabrera’s line during that period: .309/.390/.441 with an OPS of .831 and 5/21 hits were XBH.

– Here is the bullpens’ ERA & WHIP (most of the guys) during that time. ERA is dependent on a number of factors that the pitcher doesn’t control (like RBIs offensively) and FIP is a better measure (can’t get that easily), but with these gaudy figures, it really doesn’t matter. Numbers in parenthesis are their career WHIPs.

  • Kyle Ryan: 3.00/1.50 (1.35)
  • Drew Verhagen: 5.87/1.67 (1.44)
  • Justin Wilson: 9.45/1.80 (1.21)
  • Mark Lowe: 15.19/1.88 (1.40) – what’s incredible about Lowe is that of the 7 hits he gave up, 4 of them were HRs.
  • Alex Wilson: 7.04/1.56 (1.15)
  • Francisco Rodriguez: 1.69/1.31 (1.14)

So you had this amazing phenomenon where, based on WHIP (and likely several other key metrics) EVERY pitcher pitched worse, and mostly significantly worse, than his career average. Heck, you may be hard pressed to find a stretch that bad for Wilson, Wilson, and Lowe. All at a time when the offense was really bad too (the team OPS for the season is .751).

You could interpret this in two ways – 1) Ausmus lost the clubhouse. The team got into a funk and Ausmus couldn’t motivate anyone to get out of it. Or 2) the team played about as poorly in every facet of the game possible.  As far as starters go – Zimmerman and Verlander were solid in the second inning Sanchez, Fulmer, and Pelfrey had ERAs of 5.11/6.00/7.29 during that stretch.

With just slightly better bullpen pitching the Tigers win 2-3 more games during that stretch, and if the bullpen pitches like history says it should, we are probably closer to .500 for the Second Inning and are a few games over .500 right now.

Anyway, Zimmermann gets the rock to try and lead the Tigers to a series win today. Baseball Reference game preview here.

2B Ian Kinsler

RF J.D. Martinez

1B Miguel Cabrera

DH Victor Martinez

3B Nick Castellanos

LF Steven Moya

CF Cameron Maybin

C Jarrod Saltalamachhia

SS Andrew Romine




  1. Tony de Florida

    May 22, 2016 at 1:00 pm

    Informative write up. It shows the trouble we are in. Glad to see Moya get a start and the bench may help J-Up. We are coming to a point where the players need to pick it up. The division is so bad that we still have an outside chance but not if we keep burying ourselves. My personal view is that we may not be able to fix the starting rotation.

    • jud

      May 22, 2016 at 1:55 pm

      I think Greene and Ryan could be starting pitching keys. If Sanchez doesn’t come around the Adding of Greene ,pitching well can make the difference. Fuller doesn’t leave the rotation for any reason, for now..Pelfrey is improving , but Ryan who has been a starter, could go there. At least there are options…the biggest key is getting any of them into or thru 7..any less than that, the pen, or Brad will lose the game way more than win.

  2. Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

    May 22, 2016 at 1:07 pm

    Just lay the Tiger line up side-by-side the Rays. They should be spanking them at the plate, yet TB has a better record. Let’s take this series today….better yet, how about some curly fries today???

  3. Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

    May 22, 2016 at 1:39 pm

    The Rays 0.172 BA DH ties it up!

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  5. Tony de Florida

    May 22, 2016 at 2:10 pm

    I’m sorry but I’ve had my fill of Kirk Gibson. He never shuts up, could be a replacement for Dr. Sheldon Cooper on Big Bang Theory! Maybe some fans find all the technical crap fascinating but I do not. If it a 20.5 or 21.6 chance better if this or that does not add to my enjoyment of the game. It shows me how brilliant HE THINKS he is, just like Dr. Cooper. I’m just a fan not a baseball professional nor a frustrated ball player or coach that never made it to the majors. If all that data babble is so important, why didn’t it save his managerial job. It appears that everyone thinks Rod Allen is the least intelligent of the entire group of announcers we use. There has even been some writing that Mario can’t stand him. Perhaps so, but for us dummies in the audience he is perfect for the telecasts, in spite of what Mario, who is a tad short of perfect, may think. It may be time to send Chris a note on this.

    • jud

      May 22, 2016 at 2:11 pm

      I love his insight!..but once he makes a point he babbles too much unimportant stuff…some is good .but NOT Constantly…non stop!

  6. jud

    May 22, 2016 at 2:14 pm

    With Maybin..Moya..Iggy..Casty..JD…McCann…the Tigers are amazingly young …pretty good group for the future, if they keep progressing.

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  8. jud

    May 22, 2016 at 2:29 pm

    Batters are hitting.. .362 off Webb..JD rips the first pitch..Miggy rips the second …hmmmm!

  9. MJ Lee

    May 22, 2016 at 3:08 pm

    Please get rid of Kirk Gibson. He is so BORING. He has a terrible speaking voice and should never do radio or TV announcing.

  10. jud

    May 22, 2016 at 3:37 pm

    Upton PH for Moya…and I bet Ausmus wonders why people want to get rid of him…its not about LH/RH Brad its about another Kkkkkkkkkkkkkk…and he lucks out

  11. jud

    May 22, 2016 at 4:02 pm

    Lowe did the same thing Friday..first two guys get on and he gets the next three. Oh well, just get the job done, we are not fussy!

  12. StorminNorman$

    May 22, 2016 at 4:07 pm

    VMart just gave the bullpen a necessary boost…w/those 2 add’l insurance runs

  13. Tony de Florida

    May 22, 2016 at 4:16 pm

    I noticed Maybin leading an outfielder hug after the win. Is this new?

    Well we’re 1 game under mediocrity again, can Pelfrey get us there?

    Hope they are very careful with Miggy’s bruise.

  14. jud

    May 22, 2016 at 4:24 pm

    Good weekend!…Good home stand…lets keep it going with those Pesky Phillies!….

    • StorminNorman$

      May 22, 2016 at 5:22 pm

      agreed, good home stand…so far, but need to win the PHI series.

      Fortunately the pitch Cabrera took on the side of the knee was an 82 mph curve ball rather than a 95+ fastball on the front of the knee. As for Zimmerman, he’s likely going to miss some time, if he pulled his groin muscle as that appears to be the case, depending on the severity of the strain or ‘tear’, a pitcher might take 30-60 days to heal from that. Time for another young pitcher (Greene?) and the rest of the SP staff (and bullpen) to step up.

  15. StorminNorman$

    May 23, 2016 at 8:14 am

    Verhagen sent down to Toledo

    Drew Sharp makes a valid point again – twice in the same month…besting his personal record of making one valid point within a calendar year. Beating bad to mediocre teams is very important, but until DET starts performing better against good teams/pitching, any sustained optimism should be reined-in.

    • Kevin in Dallas

      May 23, 2016 at 1:40 pm


    • Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

      May 23, 2016 at 3:07 pm

      Agree….and we need to watch Cabrera’s and Zimmermann’s status as their continued absence could quickly send us back into a funk!

      • Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

        May 23, 2016 at 4:25 pm

        Good news, Cabrera is in tonight’s line up while via Jason Beck, Zimmermann is reported to have a Grade 1 groin strain which is the lowest level strain. He will miss his next start and be day-to-day after that. So let’s crank it up a notch and get after those Phillies!

        • StorminNorman$

          May 23, 2016 at 6:13 pm

          that is very good news…thanks for that update.

          Cabrera and the rest of DET offense will need to step up against Velasquez… a very good young pitcher who’s either been great or just so-so in his starts this year. Hope we get the so-so version tonight. HOU traded him for reliever Giles, who has struggled mightily this year.

  16. StorminNorman$

    May 23, 2016 at 2:29 pm

    tonight Pelfrey gets off the schneid! He hasn’t got an official “W” since August 12, 2015, but tonight that winless streak ends. Of course, that probably means DET is going to have to score 7-8 early runs then, ha?

    …the basis for the above prediction is derived from the ‘continuous probability theory’ – and if it comes to fruition, the outcome will also be supported by the newly adopted Pelfrey paradox theory.

    A little known fact about Ausmus, the lowest grade he received while at Dartmouth was a B (possibly in ‘bullpen mngmt 101’).

    • jud

      May 23, 2016 at 3:37 pm

      ××××This just in: Dartmouth College is being investigated for a possible grade changing scheme sometime in the past! No names were mentioned…..
      More to follow!××××

  17. Only Tiger Fan in Mississippi

    May 23, 2016 at 7:22 pm

    Upton was a late scratch from the lineup with a quad issue with Moyà covering LF. Maybe that will be a plus difference?