I flipped this on when I got back from softball, and caught some of the first round and couldn’t get it into, mostly because people weren’t hitting homeruns. I still think it would have been interesting to see Ichiro in this, who can be quite impressive power-wise when hitting in a batting practice type of setting.
I had a chance to watch the last few innings of this game, and it was really was enjoyable to watch. I should have cozied up with my 2003 Baseball Prospectus while watching, but I didn’t think about it. It was nice knowing these guys really wanted to be there, and were excited (and probably a little nervous) about showcasing their talents.
And in sort of a statistical fluke, the Tigers’ representative, Preston Larison, came in with two outs in the top of the sixth (the game went to seven innings), gave up a single, a wild pitch, then got out of the inning but ended up getting the win. What’s equally ironic is he only has one win all series down in Erie.
I liked this game so much, I’m going to make a point to check out the AAA All Star Game (Pacific Coast League vs. International League) on Wed.
I like this deal. Bernero was less then impressive, and I don’t see him as part of the future. And the way the other Tiger starters have been pitching, he was bottom of the barrell.
Any help at catcher is a benefit. Even if Petrick came in and hit .230/.290/.400 or close to that, it would be a dramatic improvement. Over his short ML career, he doesn’t have much of a platoon split, but one started to develop last year when he was much more effective against lefties. Down at AAA he was hitting .269 with 11 home runs in 228 at bats, although Colorado was trying to convert him to an outfielder, so I’m not sure how much time he’s gotten behind the plate as of late.
Pitching, pitching, pitching. Wil Ledezma put together another good start, and has yet to give up a run in his first two since moving into the rotation. Jamie Walker has also quietly put together a nice run. After starting out with a 4.66 ERA and a .284 batting average against over his first 19 1/3 innings, he’s managed to whittle his ERA down to 3.28 and his batting average against down to .230. He’s still prone to giving up the long ball, but if he can keep pitching like this, the left handed set up job is his.
Mears also continued to throw well, and picked up his 4th save (of the week, although this was one was of the cheap, three run variety, and I’ll get to using relief pitchers in a minute). At least we’ve finally found our closer.
One of my current gripes is how relief pitchers, specifically “closers” are used. I know you need someone to throw in the ninth when the game is on the line, but the Tigers had a 2-0, and runners on first and second in the bottom of the eighth. Boston brought in Brandon Lyon, who’s been struggling, and he let one of those inherited runners score, and even loaded up the bases, but managed to get out of it. Now instead of going into the top of the ninth down by two runs, you’re down by three. Garciaparra led off with a double, so had Boston not given up that last run, they would have been a home run away from tying the game.
Why not bring in your best reliever, Kim, in that situation? He mowed down Tigers in the first two games, and I’m sure pitching to two batters with the All Star break coming wouldn’t have taxed his arm. He was the best man to keep the Red Sox in the game. Instead, they save him for games when they’re up by three and in a “save” situation.
I found this a little refreshing to read. I’m glad Tram and Cluck are recognizing this as an issue. Of course you want to get your young pitchers some good experience, but you also don’t want to do overwork them in a season that for all intents and purposes is now meaningless.
Also good to read out about was Kenny Baugh making strides at AA. He had been getting roughed up earlier in the year, but now looks to be turning the corner. German got roughed up down in AAA, but he had been pitching well, giving up no walks and striking out 9 in 6 1/3. Hopefully we’ll see him back during the September call ups, if not sooner.
I would have really liked to have gotten down to the ball park this weekend, but with being out of town 2 of the last 3 weekends (one of which involved a baseball game), there’s just too much stuff do around the house.
For those of you who don’t know, I’ve been working on a an article of the 1968 Tigers that should appear on the Baseball Hall of Fame’s website this fall, so I’ve been doing plenty of research on this team. It would have been nice to get down there and check it out.
anytime you’re facing Pedro, you’re chances aren’t very good. To take the game into extra innings means they had another strong pitching performance.
I didn’t get a chance to watch the game, so I’m writing this based on what I’m getting out of the box score. I did see Pirates of the Caribbean tonight though, and I highly recommend it.
So, it looks like Carlos Pena had a clutch double to drive in the tying run in the eighth. Mears continues to shine by pitching another 1 2/3 scoreless innings, but Rodney, another recent call up, got roughed up. And then Kim closed the door. Todd Jones gets the win against his former team as well, despite having a rough 10th inning.
And that makes the Tigers 1-9 in extra inning games.
The positive: Another strong outing by most of the bullpen and Roney (striking out 7). Another multi-hit game from Warren Morris (although he struck out 3 times as well).
Always looking for the positive, the Tigers hung in the game after Maroth gave up four runs in the first two innings. Things looked like they were going to turn when Pena hit a solo shot in the fifth to cut the lead to one. The Red Sox threatened in the sixth, with runners on first and second with nobody, but they got Kapler to ground into a double play, and then Munson robbed Nomar (Spurling had come into pitch at this point) of a single making a nice play on a bullet hit between him and Santiago. Unfortunately the Tigers didn’t build on this, and couldn’t even manage another hit after Pena’s no out solo shot in the fifth.
Kim closed the game out, and looked pretty impressive. I’ve had this discussion/argument with others, and I still think this guy is more valuable as a starter throwing close to 200 innings, then a reliever/closer throwing around 80. Hopefully Epstein and the brain trust will come around on this.
A great outing by Cornejo, who really had been struggling for quite some time. I didn’t get to see any of this game since I had to work, but this looks like it was probably a good one (and it only took two hours and four minutes).
And probably just as impressive is the emergence of Chris Mears, who’s saved three games in as many days, and since his debut on June 29, has pitched 7 2/3, given up two hits, no walks, and has struck out five. Not too bad for a guy who didn’t even make Baseball Prospectus’ 2003 publication.
I’ve never been a big fan of Simon’s, and this sort of takes it to the next level. I’m sure the racing sausage annoy a lot of people, but I for one think its pretty funny. Tigers used to do something similar, but I think they stopped.
You wonder what Simon was thinking, if he was at all.
This is the seventh straight game where Bonderman has thrown more then 6 innings, but given up 3 or less earned runs. The good thing is the Tigers scored enough to give him the first win of those seven games.
Bonderman has really come around. In the last 38 innings, he’s walked only three batters and struck out 27. Tram also kept his pitch count down below 100 pitches. This is when they have to be careful. He’s now throw more then 100 innings, and by the end of the month, he’ll have probably worked more then at any time during his career, so keeping an eye on him during the next few months is critical.
Warren Morris had his second straight three hit game, and his third multihit game in the last four games. He’s now hitting .304. He hasn’t walked much (nine times), but to his credit, he hasn’t struck out much either (10 times, with 102 official at bats).
Ledezma pitched five shutout innings in his first start of the season and Mears shut down the White Sox in the 8th and 9th to earn his first career save. Also gotta give credit to Carlos Pena for coming up with the go ahead home run. Pena has improved his batting average from .235 to .253 since coming off the DL so hopefully he’s coming around.
The win puts the Tigers at 22-65 on the season. The team they’re trying to beat out, the 1962 Mets, were 24-63 (as best I can tell, and which means they must have finished 16-57). Of course the Tigers will play two more games then the 62 Mets, so it will be interesting to see how they get compared if they finish 41-121 (one more win, but one more loss).
When I saw this, I didn’t really care. First off, I rarely glue myself to the TV for the pre-All Star Game activites, so I don’t always catch this. Second, it will be interesting seeing some of the newer participants to the game take part in that. I also heard a rumor that Ichiro might participate, which would make things very interesting.
I still don’t feel they’re doing the All Star Game any good by giving the winning league home field advantage in the World Series. Fox’s commericials stating “This Time it Matters” are pretty silly when you consider only 2 or 3 of the participants (if that many) will even be playing in the World Series.
As far as a solution to the waning interest, I have none. I still watch the game (although I rarely stay up for the whole thing), but even for me it doesn’t have the same appeal now that I can see most teams play on TV, and I can go to Comerica Park to see a few NL teams play there every year. I think getting rid of interleague play would be a good start.