It's the end of May, right?

Hard to tell in Seattle, where it’s a cool, overcast day. What was a sunny morning gave way to showers, which has closed the roof here at Safeco Field. The nice thing about this place, and one of many reasons why it’s one of my favorite ballparks anywhere, is that it still feels like you’re outside even when the roof is closed. Without windows beyond the outfield, you still get the northwest air coming in.

UPDATE @ 3:10pm ET: The roof is now opening. Still overcast, though. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a game here with the roof closed. That’s fine with me, though.

As for the game, it’s a pretty standard lineup …

TIGERS (23-31)

  1. Granderson, CF
  2. Polanco, 2B
  3. Guillen, 3B
  4. Ordonez, RF
  5. Thames, LF
  6. Cabrera, 1B
  7. Larish, DH
  8. Renteria, SS
  9. Rodriguez, C

MARINERS (20-35)

  1. Ichiro, CF
  2. Jose Lopez, 2B
  3. Jose Vidro, DH
  4. Raul Ibanez, LF
  5. Adrian Beltre, 3B
  6. Kenji Johjima, C
  7. Jeremy Reed, RF
  8. Miguel Cairo, 1B
  9. Yuniesky Betancourt, SS

On the rehab front, both Rodney and Zumaya threw today with Dave Dombrowski watching. Jim Leyland said that Rodney’s velocity was down around 93 mph, but that his changeup was supposedly outstanding. Zumaya topped out at 97 mph but was more often around 93-95. They’ll get a couple days off, then probably head out on rehab — Rodney to Triple-A Toledo, Zumaya to Class A Lakeland.

31 Comments

C’mon guys get to felix. Couple of bad looking swings so far and he is starting to get the felix swagger.

Ugly so far. Beltre usually does damage to us.

Geez. Granderson makes a greaat play to save Verlander’s bacon then serves up a softee freeze on the first pitch to Jojima. Gotta take momentum from those kinds of plays.
Something we haven’t done all year really.

I thought about Guillen in LF once but figured the whole idea was to preserve him physically with respect to his knees. So I dismissed the idea right away. Wonder how Marcus liked reading that in the paper after being given the job!
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Hope Verlander can pull it together today, he doesn’t look right to me so far.

The last thing we need is Granderson going into a funk at the plate. His swings against Felix are awful.

Hernandez has some wicked stuff going for him today but good teams find a way. It might take some small ball but whatever it takes you gotta find a way.
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Vidro owns Verlander. Hopefully he can do something positive with Ibanez.

From MLBrumors.com:
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Possible Sellers: Detroit Tigers
Today, May 31, 2008, 4 hours ago | Joe Pawlikowski
Once again, we’re only two months into the season, and a lot can change between now and July. Using a familiar anecdote, the Yankees were 22-29 last May 31, and ended up being the best team in baseball in the second half. So while they looked like possible sellers on May 31, when July rolled around that would no longer be the case. The Detroit Tigers have a similar possibility this year.
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Touted by a to-be-unnamed ESPN analyst as having the best offense in baseball history, the Tigers have faltered in 2008. They’re 23-31, good for fourth place in the AL Central. The good news is that they can turn it around. The bad news is that the division rival Cleveland Indians are also having a poor run, sitting at 25-29. Any potential run by the Tigers could be dampened by a potential Cleveland streak.
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.So if you’re Dave Dombrowski, do you consider reloading for next year? The armchair GM in us is likely to say yes. Clearly, though, Dombrowski won’t be so impulsive. He and manager Jim Leyland have been tinkering with the lineup to see if they can spark anything. Namely, the idea is to move Carlos Guillen, who has already switched from first to third this season, to left field. That would open up third base for Brandon Inge.
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I’m not quite sure that’s the best idea, considering Marcus Thames is hitting better than Inge, though in fewer at bats. So it’s doubtful that this tinkering really gets things going. Just ask Joe Girardi. He’s been tweaking his lineup since Day 1. And while the Yankees have started hitting, I don’t think anyone is attributing it to his daily lineup shifts. Your players have to hit, plain and simple. And it stands to reason that the Tigers will hit, regardless of the lineup.
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Who’s expendable? Magglio Ordonez? It’s not often you see a team trade their best hitter. But Maggs is 34 this year. I’m not saying he’ll tank next year, but the Tigers could be seeing his peak value pass this July. If they’re truly out of it, they could consider a Maggs move. Conversely, they could consider his potential production next year far too valuable to sacrifice. He’s signed through 2009, with a pair of $15MM team options for 2010 and 2011.
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Edgar Renteria? He’s in the final year of his four-year deal, though he does have a $11MM club option for next year. That could be an attractive contract for an acquiring team. Placido Polanco? I only mention his name because he’s signed on the cheap, $4.6MM, through 2009. He could net some return for the Tigers because of his cheapness and consistency at the plate.
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I know Kenny Rogers and Nate Robertson will enter the conversation at some point. I just don’t think the pair of lefties will get the Tigers anything attractive in return. They could be token trades for players in the lower minors, for high-risk players. But if they consider themselves out of contention, it’s better than nothing, I suppose.
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Joe Pawlikowski is a writer for River Ave. Blues, a Yankees blog, and can be reached here.

Yikes. Verlander just is not with it today. Doesn’t look good for the Good Guys today.

why did they give that out to renteria on ichiro’s double play ball? he was clearly about 2 feet off the bag when the ball hit his glove? and why wouldn’t the mariners argue?..

is this something baseball thing that i haven’t been folling the game long enough to be aware of?

I’ve seen outs where it looks like they came off the bag a little early but this is the most glaring example i have ever seen.

Since FOX has chosen to show me the Dodgers-Mets game, I’m trying to follow along with radio and Gameday. It ain’t easy.
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Tell me Renteria didn’t drop an inning ending DP relay. Please.
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No, defense ain’t important at all. Big difference between 3-0 and 4-0 when you’re trying to at least get into the opposition’s bullpen. Not to mention the extra pitches that need to be thown by your guy.
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I suppose JL will figure this one out in about a month.
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–Rich

It was a bit exaggerated but they give that play and have been ever since I can remembe. It’s fondly referred to as the “neighborhood” play. In a continuous double play it doesn’t look so bad. You drop the ball and it looks bad. Part of the reason for the acceptance of the play is that it is felt that it reduces injuries. I don’t mind it but only on the double play.
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What was too bad was that they would have gotten the DP on that if he hadn’t of muffed it. 4 runs is a lot more to make up than 3 runs!

Jesus.. he thew leyland out quick.. it looked like leyland said “what the hell did you throw me out for”… it wasn’t even a heated exchange.

i guess that’s why you don’t argue wether or not a guy is on the bag..

renteria was a mile off it.. i still don’t understand it.

thanks for explaining it for me dan.

i thought the double play thing might have had something to do with it.

It’s crazy that verlander went from having the best run support in the league the last 2 years to the absolute worst.. 2 straight games it looks like he’s going to start a tigers shutout.

Well these hitters have been so inconsistent it’s scary. They can be all over the bal land then enter the Coma Zone on the next AB. They won’t do much against Felix today–their best bet is to make him throw a bunch of pitches and get into the bullpen. The way they are hitting though that is no guarantee. They didn’t do a thing against the Mariners’ bullpen yesterday. It’s a very frustrating thing and much more frustrating for them and JL than it is for us.
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JL is flailing right now trying to shake things up, without really shaking thme up, if you know what I mean. A big shakeup means they make a trade not switch positions or alter the lineup.
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We all thought this team was going to as close to invincible as one could be. The problem seeems to be that so did they and so did management.
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If they can pull this game out it will be a possible “pivot point” for them this year.

BTW–it looked to me that Granderson was safe. I’m very surprised Beltre made it that close, Granderson must not have gotten out of the box properly as he should have beaten that one out.
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Polanco has struck out twice this game–I think that happened once before this year.
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Maggs just made a 1st pitch out again. Drives me nuts–especially when you’re behind and need runners. They are giving in to Hernandez and making his outing much easier than it should be.

C’mon guys—-a 6 pitch inning at this stage of the game is absurd.

This is what I was worried about yesterday. One big inning then they go to sleep. I don’t care if they score in double digits in the first inning, they have to put other runs up on the board thru the course of the game. If they can’t do that it indicates they have a problem. The problem yesterday carried right over to today. Would not be surprised to see more of the same tomorrow.
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I’m just hoping the Wings play a few hundred percent better than the Tigers have today.

Dan, Polanco struck out twice the other day against the angels.. santana i think..

.. the commentators going nuts over the steal of home is annoying.. he would have been out had pudge been able to grab the ball.. it should be an error over anything else.. it’s not like he did anything.

Well Larish is had a rude awakening in the bigs.
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Back to my point I made yesterday about not being satisfied with not scoring in 8 out of 9 innings.
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This is a major concern. It means you can’t score at will. It means you only score when conditions are ideal. It means you can never feel you are always in the game and never out of it. It means you can’t grind out victories you can only contend if the game is a parade.
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Very concerning.
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This will be the 9th shutout of the season. They have already packed it in.

all the opposing teams have to do is put in a pitcher who has not pitched very well lately and the tigers make them look like 20 game winners. very frustrating to watch

Felix is a very good pitcher–no question. But you are right in there are times it really does not matter who a team throws. This offense will make them look good.
Like I say–I hope the Wings show some character today because we didn’t see any in Seattle.

Today——I mean.

That was………………..Gross!

The shutout means they are on a pace to be shut out about 27 times this season.
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As opposed to 3 in 2007.
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Welcome to Detroit Cabrera, Jacque Jones and Edgar Renteria.

the first 3 innings, verlander used up so many pitches .. he was inefficient .. why not piggyback willis and him .. kidding .. but fox showed a stat today, he has most pitches per start of any pitcher (AL?) .. and he doesn’t last deep into games..

I find it fascinating that Inge and Santiago sit on the bench because they can’t hit. The guys that can hit mail it in most days, with the same result. How long does it take to realize this doesn’t work?
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I’ll give credit to Felix, he sounded tough, but here again we have another 17 inning scoreless streak. I would like to see some contact hitters in there, as we got 11 Ks and 0 walks today.
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Guillen is the only one who has consistently had good ABs this season. The rest of them give up too easily. We’ll have to win with pitching and defense because this approach doesn’t work. It never was going to work and I still can’t believe we went in this direction. I keep thinking I’ll wake up and it’s the morning of October 27, 2007, and none of it actually happened.
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–Rich

Didn’t read all the comments. Did get to see the game however, and all I have to say is that this team, is exhausting me. You never know which team you are going to get. And I am sorry I have heard a few too many times this year that we are just running into really good pitching. When in fact our hitters are inconsistent, frustrating and impatient.
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It cannot always be the pitchers, one of these days the hitters are going to have to take responsibility.
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And Leyland getting ejected that was ridiculous, and I have got to say that I don’t know if I have ever seen Granderson complain about anything. He really must of thought that there was no way he kept his foot on the bag. I don’t think so either, at least not long enough. That was completely ridiculous situation all the way around.
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Hopefully the Wings don’t disappoint tonight, GO WINGS.
Hopefully the Tigers will come out with a little fire tomorrow. Today they disgusted me. Really after the first inning yesterday they disgusted No runs in 17 innings terrible.

I was just thinking about this GK. Wouldn’t you think a team could accidentally get a run in 17 innings? I mean, without even trying, just accidentally score a run. Amazing……

that exactly what I said. You’d think they would run into a homerun or a double. They are awefully disappointing.

All good comments.. I can’t agree more, with talented players sitting on the bench, while the big guns go up and sit back down.. 17 innings again.. SCORELESS GUYS!
UNWATCHABLE… How many games has Verlander started, and received “NO RUN Support”? Doesn’t this make anyone curious, if there is something happening in clubhouse? I realize there is natural skill, luck and fate.. but it just seems like a lot of hard luck every time he goes out there.

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