The Tigers lost their finale yesterday and failed to sweep the Twins, but there’s plenty to be happy about with regards to the Tigers first half of the season. They’re tied for first place if you look at the loss column and they even put some distance between themselves and the Twins. The White Sox can’t stay this hot forever but I’m interested in seeing how this three team race pans out. Tigers fans have to be a little happy too because the team leads all of baseball with 32 home wins. They need to work on their road record to contend the rest of the season but it’s still nice going to the ballpark knowing the team is going to win around 70% of the time.
While Miguel Cabrera’s first half was huge, two other reasons the Tigers are in contention is the comeback of Magglio Ordonez and the emergence of Brennan Boesch. Ordonez’s numbers look eerily similar to 2008 when he had a nice follow up to his near-MVP 2007 season. Boesch came out of nowhere and continues to rake and he heads into the break with a five game hitting streak. His batting average hasn’t been below .340 since early June and his OPS has been hovering right around the 1.000 mark.
The pitching staff needs some work. Justin Verlander is there, but after that it’s pretty inconsistent. Max Scherzer is riding a four game winning streak and I think he’s the guy who’s going to step up in the second half. The guy I’m most worried about is Jeremy Bonderman. I just hope that arm holds up in the second half because it’s been a while since he’s thrown this many innings.
I am a little sad about what the All Star Game has become though. Growing up, this was a big game and it was one of the few chances to see players from the National League. I think the home run derby, as boring as that is, actually is more popular then the actual All Star Game now. I’ll still watch some of it, but not with the interest I had in the 1980s when I was glued to the television. My favorite All Star Game is still 1987 when they went into extra innings in a shutout game. I also think the whole home field advantage thing is a joke but that’s for another day.