Archive for May, 2009

Edwin Jackson Throws Eight Shutout Innings, Tigers Salvage Split Over Orioles

The Tigers got back to their winning weekends and they capped this latest one off with a spectacular pitching performance by Edwin Jackson.  He yielded just two hits and a walk with seven strikeouts in eight shutout innings.  Throw in a shutout ninth by Fernando Rodney for save number 10 and you have the Tigers seventh shutout of the season.  I picked this up from the Yahoo recap

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Money Train ipod , but the Edwin Jackson, Rick Porcello and Justin Verlander combined for 14 wins in the month of May.  That’s the most by a Tiger trio since 1993.

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Born on the Fourth of July rip Curtis Granderson went yard with his 13th homer of the season to put the Tigers on the board and depite it being a solo shot, it was all the Tigers would need.  Jeff Larish went two for three with an RBI and Magglio Ordonez failed to get a hit so his 16 game hitting streak ended.

The Tigers have a day off then they come home to take on the Red Sox.  It’ll be Rick Porcello going up against Dice-K in the opener on Tuesday.

Tigers Finally Figure Out Baltimore

It wasn’t pretty, but the Tigers finally picked up their first win of the series against the Orioles.  On a good note, Justin Verlander was pretty good and he picked up his sixth straight win.  The bad news is, it was his worst start in the month of May and you hope this isn’t him cooling down.  Still, he pitched six frames and he struck out five and walked just one but once he got into the fifth, he seemed very hittable.  On the other hand, you almost can excuse the two run shot he gave up to Luke Scott because for whatever reason, that guy has owned the Tigers.

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Clete Thomas was once again your leadoff man but he hit like a guy who should have been hitting third.  He belted two home runs and drove in three.   Curtis Granderson, who used to lead off, also went yard with his twelth of the season.  Magglio Ordonez extended his hitting streak to sixteen games with three hits.

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The Tigers can salvage a split of the four game series this afternoon.  It’ll be Edwin Jackson going up against Jason Berken.  In the meantime, the White Sox have risen from the mess that’s the AL Central.  They still don’t have a winning record, but they’re in second place, four games behind the Tigers.

Orioles Beat Up Dontrelle

Alright, it’s time to nit pick.  In the bottom of the third inning with the score 1-0, the Orioles had runners on first and third with one out.  Aubrey Huff hit a hard grounder to Brandon Inge, who was playing in.  Huff isn’t a speedster, so Inge probably could have gotten an inning ending double play (Mario and Rod agreed with me).  Instead, he came home and got out number two.  Then you get a single and a grand slam and all of a sudden it’s 5-0.  The final was 7-2 and all seven were given up by Dontrelle in a rough start (he didn’t seem to trust his fastball).

Here it’s the post game show and they’re talking about the Inge play again.  They really want to get Dontrelle off the hook.

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Both Tiger runs came in the seventh.  Curtis Granderson singled home a run and then Brandon Inge pushed forward a run when he grounded into a double play.  Magglio Ordonez went three for four and he’s now sitting on a fifteen game hitting streak.

Justin Verlander gets the start tomorrow.  He’s been pretty good (5-0-, 0.85 ERA, 51 strikeouts in 42 1/3 innings) in his last six starts so hopefully he’ll help end this skid.  Jeremy Guthrie gets the nod for the Orioles.

Tigers Drop Opener Against Orioles, Matt Wieters Debuts Tonight

After taking two of in Kansas City, the Tigers dropped their opener to the AL East cellar dwellers, the Baltimore Orioles.  Luke Scott was a thorn in the Tigers side and he accounted for most of the Orioles offense and a lack of offense cost Armando Galarraga his first win in a while.  He gave up three runs on ten hits and one walk with four strikeouts in seven innings.  Bobby Seay and Ryan Perry both gave up a run each in their inning pitched.

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The lone Tiger run came in the fifth inning.  Clete Thomas, who was batting leadoff, singled home Gerald Laird.  Curtis Granderson had two of the Tigers five hits and he stole his eighth base. 

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Igby Goes Down on dvd Tonight, Orioles prospect phenom Matt Wieters makes his major league debut.  On the mound, it’ll be Dontrelle Willis going up against Brad Bergensen.  Willis followed up his awesome start last Tuesday with a decent enough start on Sunday so hopefully he can make it three in a row.

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Ask The Pro

Andrew Hess, over at Tigers Minors, is asking for feedback on what people would like to know about the career of a minor league player.  Just leave a comment on the post and he’ll be picking the best of the best to formulate his next few posts.


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Tigers Survive Rockie Visit, Take Opener Against Royals

The Tigers big winning streak came to an end over the weekend.  After going 12-0 on Saturday and Sunday prior to Saturday, they dropped two straight weekend games to the Rockies before heading to Kansas City for a big three game series.  Fortunately, they snapped that two game mini-skid and dismantled the Royals yesterday afternoon.  The Tigers scored two in the first then never looked back as they crushed KC 13-1.

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Miguel Cabrera had another monster game yesterday.  He went four for five with two doubles, three RBIs and two runs.  That pushed his batting average up to a league leading .378.  Curtis Granderson and Brandon Inge both had three hits while Gerald Laird hit the only homer for either side.

Lost in all of the offense was a fantastic start by Justin Verlander.  He gave up just five hit with eight strikeouts in seven shutout innings.  Zach Miner gave up the lone run and then Ryan Perry pitched a shutout ninth to close things out.

That gives the Tigers a four game lead in the AL Central and they’re the lone team in the division that doesn’t have a losing record.  Tonight we get a pretty good pitching matchup in Edwin Jackson and Zach Greinke.  Greinke has been the best pitcher in baseball so far this year so it’ll be interesting to see if the Tigers can do something against him.

Edwin Jackson Throws 132 Pitches In Tigers Win Over Rangers

The Tigers finished their sweep over the Rangers and won their sixth straight game.  Edwin Jackson had a very solid start but ran into trouble in the eighth when he allowed the tying run to cross the plate.  Fortunately, Miguel Cabrera helped him salvage a win with his RBI single in the bottom half of the frame to give the Tigers a 4-3 win.

In all, Jackson threw 132 pitches so I’m interested to see how he does his next couple of starts.  120 seems to be the magic number and he won’t get an extra day’s rest because the Tigers don’t have a day off on Monday.  Fernando Rodney picked up his second save in as many days with a shutout ninth.

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The other three Tigers runs came via the longball.  Clete Thomas belted a solo homer in the first inning and then Curtis Granderon belted a two shot in the third.  For Granderson, it was his eleventh of the season.  At this pace, he could reach his career high of 23 home runs by the All Star Break. 

Interleague play starts tomorrow as the Rockies come to town.  The Royals lost so that gives the Tigers a three game lead.  This weekend should be interesting because it leads into a big three game series against the second place Royals beginning Monday.

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Tigers Hang On For Fifth Straight Win

Justin Verlander notched his fourth straight win in another impressive outing as the Tigers continued their winning ways.  It was the first time he didn’t reach double digit strikeouts in a while, but he gace up just one run on three hits and two walks with eight strikeouts.  The run, three hits and one of those walks all came in the the fifth inning.

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Amityville II: The Possession video The pen bent but didn’t break.  Brandon Lyon gave up a solo homer in the seventh and then Joel Zumaya looked like he was going to get torn apart before he pitched himself out of a jam in the eighth.  He gave up three straight singles and then a fielder’s choice made it 5-3 before he struck out the final two batters of the inning.  Zumaya now has thrown 12 1/3 innings and he hasn’t given up a walk.

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Fernando Rodney then pitched an easy ninth for his seventh save of the season.  Wilkin Ramirez picked up his first big league and it was a solo home run in the sixth inning.  Ryan Raburn hit a solo shot and then Brandon Inge went yard with number eleven. 

The Royals lost so that now gives the Tigers a nice little two game lead (even better, it’s three in the loss column).  The Tigers go for the sweep this afternoon and it’ll be Kevin Millwood against Edwin Jackson.

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Dontrelle Pitches….Well?

It’s the bottom of the eighth and Joel Zumaya just punched a couple of guys out.  What’s really encouraging though is how well Dontrelle Willis pitched.  6 1/3 shutout innings and he gave up just one hit, and more importantly, he walked just two.  The pen is doing their job and with one inning left, let’s hope Dontrelle can get his first win in a Tigers uniform.

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The Tigers pulled out the win and it’s another shutout.  That makes it five straight wins.

Also, I’m a little behind on this but MVN is having a mock draft.  Matt Wallace picked Shelby Miller with the ninth overall pick in the draft.

Tigers Overcome Six Run Deficit to Finish Sweep Over A's

The Tigers were down 6-0 in the second but by the third inning, they had an 8-6 lead that they hung onto to finish up their three game series sweep over the Athletics.  The bad news was that Armando Galarraga was shelled again and he didn’t finish the first. Fortunately, the pen got it done.  Zach Miner got what was pretty much a spot start and he picked up the win and Lucas French threw two shutout innings to help things out.

Ramon Santiago had a huge day at the plate. He went four for four and he finished a double short of hitting for the cycle.  He drove in four and scored three times.  Curtis Granderson belted his tenth home run and he drove in three while Adam Everett went three for three.

The Royals won so the Tigers lead stays at one game (two in the loss column though).  The Tigers get a day off before the Rangers head into town.  I’m thinking of trying to get down for Thursday’s game but we’ll see.  Tomorrow, it’ll be Dontrelle Willis’ second start and the Rangers will throw Brandon McCarthy.

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All Alone

After being stuck in a tie with the Royals for over a week, the Tigers moved into sole possession of first place last night behind a solid outing by Rick Porcello.  The rookie picked up his team high fourth win with six solid frames.  He was limited to 86 pitches, but when he came out, the Tigers had a 6-1 lead.  He gave up just one run on three hits and two walks with five strikeouts.  Bobby Seay didn’t melt down but he needed to get just one batter out before yielding to the Joel Zumaya (1 2/3 innings without a hit or walk) and Fernando Rodney (one inning, one strikeout).

Ryan Raburn drove in his eighth run in the past two games.  In those two contests, he’s nearly doubled his OPS (from .335 to .665) and he’s hit both of two homers this season.  Miguel Cabrera drove in four runs and Placido Polanco went three for five with two runs.

Listed attendance was 33,000 and while I didn’t get to see any of last nights game, the game on Friday, despite the 26,000 listed attendance.  I went on to check what I could find for todays game if I wanted to and I could have gotten a block of four in the lower deck club seats and if I wanted to just go with my son, I could have gotten eleventh row behind the Tigers dugout.   Sunday’s games are usually well attended too so having those kind of seats available is a little worrisome.  Still, if the Tigers keep winning (or at least stay in contention, which in the Central is .500), people should start coming out.

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Brandon Inge, Ryan Raburn Each Drive In Five

The Tigers came home and put on some fireworks before the actual fireworks display as they dismantled the Athletics 14-1.  The Tigers wasted no time and their five run first inning was capped off by a grand slam by Ryan Raburn.  From there, the Tigers kept piling the runs on.  Brandon Inge and Raburn each finished with five RBIs while Clete Thomas and Miguel Cabrera each scored four runs.  Magglio Ordonez also pitched in with a three for three, two run and two RBI game.

Lost in all the offense was another nice start by Edwin Jackson.  He gave up just one run on six hits in seven innings and his six strikeouts kept his strikeout ratio well above his career average.  Lucas French made his major league debut and he pitched a shutout ninth.

The Royals won so the Tigers are still in first by a percentage point.  It’ll be Rick Porcello against Dallas Braden in a chilly night game tonight.

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Justin Verlander Comes to the Rescue

The Tigers have lost two straight and their rotation is in disarray but Justin Verlander has thirteen strikeouts today with one out in the seventh.  Bobby Seay is warming up so this might be it for Verlander (Tigers are up 5-0).  Scratch that, Verlander just got pulled with two runners on.

Nate Robertson hit the disabled list and Lucas French was brought up in his place.  This is after Juan Rincon was designated for assigment to make room for Dontrelle.


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Armando Galarraga Is Roughed Up In Tigers Loss to Twins

Armando Galarraga notched his third straight loss and it was the third straight time he gave up at least five runs as the Tigers lost to the Twins 6-2.  By the end of the third, it was 4-0 and while he pitched into the sixth inning to avoid taxing the pen, the Tigers couldn’t muster anywhere near the offense to pull off a comeback.  Ryan Perry struck out two but he gave up a run in his two innings so it was a mixed bag outing for him.

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The Tigers scored both of their runs on solo shots. Jeff Larish went yard in the sixth inning and then Ramon Santiago hit his second home run of the season in the seventh.  Clete Thomas (still hitting third) joined both of those guys with two hits.

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Tonight is the much anticipated return of Dontrelle Willis.  Glen Perkins throws for the Twins.

Tigers Move Into First Place After Sweep of Indians

It may just be percentage points, but the Tigers moved into the lead in the AL central thanks to a sweep over the Indians and some help by the Angels who sweeped the Royals.  Both teams sit atop the division as the only two teams with winning records so it’ll be interesting to see if the Royals, and for that matter, the Tigers stick and this turns into the two team race down the stretch.

Even I forget sometimes how good the Royals were in the late 1970s and early to mid-1980s.  From 1976 through 1985, they won their division seven times including three straight from 1976 through 1978 (and they lost to the Yankees in the ALCS each time).  They finally nabbed their first World Series in 1985 and they haven’t been to the playoffs since.

Anyway, the Tigers finished up the Indians yesterday and they did with a big four run second inning.  Jeff Larish homered and Curtis Granderson capped off the frame with a two run single.  Adam Everett had two hits and two RBIs and he pushed his average up to .281 while Magglio Ordonez went two for three with a walk and two runs.

Rick Porcello wasn’t as effecient as he’s been, but he got through five frames and he gave up just one run in five innings of work in the 5-3 win.  The pen was good with the exception of Fernando Rodney, who chose a good time to have a bad outing.  He gave up a pair of runs in the ninth in a non-save situation.

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The Tigers have a travel day as they head to Minnesota to take on the Twins.  Game one on Tuesday has Armando Galarraga going up against Kevin Slowey.

Shutout, Part Deux

On Friday it was Justin Verlander.  This time, it was Edwin Jackson with some help from the pen as the Tigers walked away with a 4-0 win over the Indians.  Jackson went seven innings and it looks like Jim Leyland is keeping a close eye on Jackson’s pitch count because in starts past, it’s been a late inning melt down that has cost him.  This time, Jackson got out of there before anything bad could happen and he finished with seven shutout innings.  Joel Zumaya and Fernando Rodney each threw a shutout frame (a la 2006) to wrap it up.  Rodney did his best Todd Jones impersonation by putting two men on with one out but he got out of the jam unscathed.

Miguel Cabrera continued his impressive hitting with a pair of singles.  He also scored on a Jeff Larish triple in the eighth inning.  Gerald Laird put the Tigers on the board in the seventh when Curtis Granderson scored on his ground out.

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The Tigers go for the sweep this afternoon.  It’ll be Rick Porcello going up against Anthony Reyes.

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Coach Daly Passes at Age 78

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, but the Bad Boys era Pistons were smack dab in the middle of a period of time where I probably watched more sports then I ever did or have since.  In fact I watched every single Pistons game in 1992 with my then roommate up at MSU.  I missed the news that he had pancreatic cancer so this came as a shock.  Chuck Daly will go down in history for a lot of things, but probably the most impressive is that he was the one guy who could handle Dennis Rodman.  There was a period of time where the “Worm” appeared pretty normal and it wasn’t until Chuck left the Pistons that Rodman became more and more eccentric.

Justin Verlander Strikes Out Eleven In Two Hit Shutout

Braveheart movies He’s on My Mind film While it’s not quite Hal Newhouser versus Bob Feller yet, Justin Verlander and Cliff Lee put on a pitching exhibition in a head to head matchup for the second time in a week.  Fortunately, Verlander got the better of Lee in both outings and he saved the best for yesterday as he held the Indians to a mere two hits and two walks in his first shutout of the season.  In fact the last time he had a shutout was back in 2007 when he threw his no-hitter against the Brewers.  It’s also the second time this year he’s struck out eleven and the last time he did that was back in 2007 when he struck out eleven against the Braves on June 23.

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The lone run for either side in the 1-0 win came in the eighth inning.  Curtis Granderson drew a walk and stole second and then Clete Thomas singled him home.  Thomas was the lone Tiger with two hits while Magglio Ordonez singled and drew a walk.

Of course Granderson working out a way to score in the eighth wasn’t the only way he helped the team.  He also scaled the wall to take away a home run from Grady Sizemore.  Ryan Raburn also made a nice diving catch in left to take away a hit.

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The Royals lost so the Tigers deficit in the Central is now down to two.  Game two is tonight and it’ll be Edwin Jackson going up against Fausto Carmona.

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This one was over pretty quickly as Armando Galarraga was touched up for five runs in the first innings before settling in.  He ended up needing just 85 pitches to get through six frames before he got pulled but by then, the score was 6-0.  Ryan Perry threw two scoreless frames to close things out but the Tigers could never get their bats going.

Antwone Fisher movie download In fact, they didn’t get their first hit until seventh inning.  Placido Polanco broke up the no hitter and the Tigers loaded up the bases but couldn’t come up with the big hit.  Polanco later singled again when the Tigers threatened in the ninth, but they stranded two base runners in that frame.  The only other hit was a single by Curtis Granderson.

That puts the Tigers in a three game hole behind the Royals.  The Tigers do head to Cleveland to tak on the last place Indians so hopefully that can put the Tigers back on track.  It’ll be Justin Verlander against Cliff Lee in a rematch from last Sunday.

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Rick Porcello Throws Seven Shutout Innings In Tigers Win Over Twins

Hopefully, we got a glimpse of the future last night.  Rick Porcello gave up just four hits and three walks with three strikeouts in seven shutout innings to pick  up his second career win.  He only needed 87 pitches to do it and 14 of the 18 outs that weren’t strikeouts came on ground balls.  Not bad for the 20 year old and it was a solid win for the Tigers against a division opponent.

Nate Robertson and Juan Rincon threw a shutout frame each.  After struggling in his first few appearances, Rincon has thrown a shutout frame in each of his last two so hopefully he’s getting back on track.  Nate Robertson still has the 6.30 ERA, but most of that was the four runs beatdown he took against the Yankees last week.

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I’ve been questioning Jim Leyland’s lineup construction skills since he took over back in 2006 (he regularly his Alexis Gomex fifth) and what immediately sticks out is Clete Thomas hitting third in his first big league game of the season.  Well, maybe Leyland knows something all of us dont because Clete rose to the occasion and went three for four and he was a home run short of hitting for the cycle.  Miguel Cabrera homered and drove in four while Curtis Granderson hit his ninth from the five spot in the order.

Carlos Guillen has hit the disabled list.  Clay Rapada was also sent back down to the minors and that made room for Thomas and Jeff Larish. The Tigers have had their share of injuries this year, but so far, they’ve been able play through them.

The Royals have won four straight and they kept their game and a half lead over the Tigers in the Central.  The Tigers have that same lead over the third place Twins thanks to last night’s win.  Next up is a two game set against the fourth place (barely, they’re a half game back of the Twins) White Sox.  It’ll be Mark Buehrle (who’s been good this year) against Armando Galarraga.

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