Take your pick. The Tigers lost their fourth straight series to open up the season and they were shut out for the fourth time. Javier Vazquez and the White Sox pen did a number on the Tigers, who were held to just six hits. Even worse, they struck out 12 times with just a single walk. Gary Sheffield had the only extra base hit with a double.
I heard an interesting stat about the Tigers on television. Even without doing so today, the Tigers have grounded into 19 double plays in 12 games. That’s about three every two games and it’s miles ahead of the 128 they hit into last year (about three every four games). Not only are the Tigers not getting many hits, when they do get on base, they’re ending their rallies with double plays.
And you can’t really blame it all on the bats because the pitching, with a few exceptions, has been pretty mediocre (yes, I’m being nice). Kenny Rogers was knocked around and then Zach Miner came in and got shelled as well. I know the White Sox look better at the plate, but this is the team that was at the bottom in offense last year. Clay Rapada did do a nice job with two shutout innings to close out the game.
Sparky Anderson was a huge proponent of waiting to judge a team until they had 4o games under their belt. If that’s the case, the Tigers need to go 18-8 just to start the season 20-20. That seems like a tall task for a team that hasn’t won a series yet but you have to hope the Tigers can put together a nice hot streak here soon.
Next up is a short two game set at home against the Twins. It’ll be Jeremy Bonderman throwing against the rookie Nick Blackburn.