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Winning Streaks, Starting Pitching and Lineups

After a 7-7 start, the Tigers have now rattled off five straight wins.  Equally impressive is that they’re doing it on the west coast.  They have one more stop against the Angels this week, but even if they take one of three, they’ll finish 6-3 on the trip.  And if it weren’t for an eight game winning streak by the White Sox, the Tigers might have found themselves in first place.

The Tigers got some great starting pitching in this series.  Nate Robertson gave up only two hits in seven shutout innings and Justin Verlander was no slouch today either.  He gave up one run on four hits in seven innings.  And Mike Maroth had his second straight quality start since getting bumped in the rotation because of an elbow problem.  He gave up four hits in six shutout innings. 

Friday we saw the return of Todd Jones.  He gave up back to back singles with one out, then walked the bases loaded.  Jeremy Reed hit a sac. fly to cut the lead in half (2-1) but then he got Ichiro to ground out to end the game.  Things went more smoothly today.  He struck out one in a perfect ninth and he picked up his second save of the season.  While I still think Jones is overpaid, I do think having him in the pen will give Jim Leyland one more solid option.

What definitely qualifies as a WTF moment, Leyland hit Omar Infante third today.  At least Carlos Guillen was moved up to fifth (because he was the DH and the DH HAS TO HIT FIFTH!!), but Shelton is still hitting sixth.  I know it was get away day, but having Santiago in the lineup was also a little troubling.  But the team is winning, so it’s hard to complain too much.

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