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Tigers Even Series With Blowout Win Over Red Sox

It was the Magglio Ordonez and Justin Verlander show today.  Justin Verlander gave up an early run in the first inning but held the Red Sox scoreless until he gave up a solo homerun to Kevin Youkilis in the eighth inning.  And Magglio Ordonez gave the Tigers all of the offense they’d need with a three run homer in the third inning.  Brandon Inge also went yard in the third inning with a solo shot and Gary Sheffield singled, drew a walk and scored twice in the 7-2 win.

Verlander struck out a season high seven batters in his third straight win.  He didn’t give up a single free pass and he gave up just six hits in what was probably Verlander’s best start since he threw seven shutout innings back in early April.

Tomorrow, it’ll be the two back end starters going head to head with Mike Maroth taking on Julian Tavarez.  Even in Tavarez’ one win, he didn’t look all that great so I like our chances in this one if Mike Maroth can hold the Red Sox in check.

I was a bit surprised to see Verlander back out in the 8th since he was already over 100 pitches. I think it was a combo of 2 factors: He had a bunch of easy innings and was not laboring at all, evidenced by touching the high 90’s on the gun in the 8th. The other factor is the bullpen, when in Fenway you never know when it will be a shoot out and will need the pen. They had been worked the past couple of games and with 2 more games coming up with Maroth and Durbin they might be needed again. Throw in Zumaya missing and I think it was a good decision to try and get one more inning out of Verlander.

Posted by Ryan on May 16th, 2007 at 9:16 am

What’s up with Mags? And I’m not just asking about his elevated BA and SLG. He’s drawing more walks than he historically does. Throughout his career, he has walked at a rate just below the MLB average of about 1 per 10 ABs. This year he’s walking 1 in about 6 ABs. Has Sheffield influenced his approach? Is his new found patience the reason for his elevated BA and SLG? I hope this is not just a blip, but a continuing trend.

Posted by Doug Purdie on May 16th, 2007 at 1:18 pm

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