Day off for Sheff

Jim Leyland hadn’t had a chance to check with Gary Sheffield on his shoulder when he made out the lineup Thursday morning, but with a day game after a long night game and a trip to Minnesota following, the skipper decided a day off was in order regardless. It also allows him to give Magglio a day at DH.

Fernando Rodney is available to work the ninth again for a third straight day if needed.

On a side note, Leyland noted that Dusty Ryan will probably get his first Major League start at catcher Sunday at Minnesota. Word is, and confirmed, that Ryan hit the Charlie Gehringer statue beyond the outfield on a batting practice swing Tuesday.

Not as exciting as the other news going on downtown, but hey, that’s not my beat. That said, there were more than a few players watching what was going on with Detroit’s mayor this morning on television.

TIGERS (67-72)

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

ANGELS (84-54)

  1. Gary Matthews Jr., RF
  2. Robb Quinlan, 3B
  3. Mark Teixeira, 1B
  4. Vladimir Guerrero, DH
  5. Torii Hunter, CF
  6. Juan Rivera, LF
  7. Brandon Wood, SS
  8. Jeff Mathis, C
  9. Sean Rodriguez, 2B

107 Comments

As Charlie Gehringer’s nephew, I hope he can do it in a game.

I am surprised, typically they sit more starters on day games.
Hey Jason – I’d rather report on Tigers any day than politics!! Crazy stuff going on there!

Kenny is getting hammered pretty good and only 4 batters up so far. Inge does not look good behind the plate. Another PB on a very catchable pitch.
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Man are they ever teeing off on Kenny. Lucky to have only 1 run against.

It seems the Tiger pitchers don’t like to see hitters batting under .200!
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They are still teeing off on Kenny after 2 inning s and 2 lucky DPs later we are only down by 2

A suggestion for JL.
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Get on the the PHONE!

I thought the Tigers weren’t going to leave for Minnesota until tomorrow. If they leave today after the game they will beat Minnesota home as the Twins have a night game in Toronto.

Kenny Rogers is have another bad start. No wonder he wasn’t traded. Could we be seeing Dontrelle Willis taking his place soon.

Did the Angels take BP this morning?

Man oh man, what a beat down. Looks Kenny needs to also take a seat for a few weeks. Sheesh. Well, I suppose you have to hit bottom before there can be a change and we are getting there with this starting pitching. Willis can give us 5 runs in 3 innings. Give him and Garcia a shot.

why oh why is kenny still pitching for this tigers team?.. he’s not coming back next year.. we have no hopes this year… and he stinks!!! give someone else a chance!!!!

6 – 0. Wow. Tigers are getting beat like a Hitler pinata at a bar mitzvah right now. Time to throw in the red flag.

How stupid does this sound?
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“Brandon Inge is the best 3rd Baseman in baseball, and he would hit better playing full time there”. But (my words to follow) I think I will catch him even though he is a below average catcher and hits worde when he catches”.
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What is wrong with this picture? Does this sound like a championship philosophy? Wouldn’t it be better to get a proven MLB catcher with some power and play Inge at 3rd?
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To my trade Ordonez for list:

You can add both Santanas! Earvin or Johann

“Wouldn’t it be better…..?” You know, fellow Tiger fans, we have been repeating ourselves over and over with these comments. Do you think anyone is listening? DD is not a stupid person. He did go out and get a lot of good players. But he is not perfect. No GM is 100% perfect. Now DD is trapped by the poor performance of many of those same players, hindered by contracts, agents, and other GM’s who most likely don’t want some of these players. Will there ever be a way we can tell if he actually read, agrees with, and will carry out some of these suggestions? Maybe at the end of the season if he fires Leyland and the coaches or if he is able to switch some of these players. At the very least, it would be great if DD said he does read the fan’s comments and will take them under consideration. He may not be able to follow up on all of them, but we would know he understands. Help me out here. Has DD ever said he understands the fans’ concerns?

Well at least we get to see some decent work from Lopez and don’t have to see Rodney flying off the mound.

Curtis goes yard again and now moves past Mags on the homer list. I didn’t check but my guess is that he’s also higher on the slugging percentage and maybe right with him on strikeouts. So, looks like Mags is the new leadoff guy and Curtis is hitting clean-up.

Bottom line: this has been a very odd year right from the get go. We can rail on players and management and question things because we have a right to and ultimately it is OUR game. We can argue about whether Inge should be at 3B or not and the merits of trading Mags. That’s all fun for me, especially with the folks on this blog who seem to know what they are talking about. Whether DD and JL are listening? Don’t know. But I’m reminding of one Bob Knight who so famously remarked when asked a question by a reporter about his decision in a game “I’ve forgotten more about this f’ing game than all you people combined are ever going to know.” That might be something JL says between drags on the Marlboros in his office. We’ll see what the off-season holds.

A couple of interesting angles today and last night in the postings here.
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Does Leyland read this stuff? Absolutely not. Dombrowksi? No, but it wouldn’t surprise me to learn that there is someone in the front office staff who’s assignment it is to monitor fan feedback from any manner of forum. I do hear comments from both of them from time to time that tells me they do have a finger on the pulse. All I know for sure is that other fans read our comments, and a sharp media guy would too. The media kind of represents the voice of the fans during interviews, which is why some of JL’s answers are quite often frustrating. Speaking for myself, I just enjoy swapping ideas with other keen minded baseball fans, and it also helps me keep a connection to my former home of 50 years.
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There was a mini-debate about the worth of Leyland’s managing. GK asked if anyone thought the Tigers excelled in 2006 despite JL. I kind of think they did, somewhat. At any rate, the manager is the one responsible for the whole ball of wax on field, and he’ll get both credit and blame. That’s entirely normal, IMO. I do think he could have done a much better job here, but his old school stubborness gets in the way. I’ll also point out something he tried this year that he got no credit for. Remember the Guillen to LF thing up in Seattle this May? JL was laughed at, called crazy and such. Well, that move also put Inge at thirdbase, so I think there was something to that. Unfortunately, Brandon almost immediately strained his oblique and that was the end of that. In the past few days, I have brought that move up a couple times, with no response from anyone.
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One thing is for sure. There is definitely a lot of passion displayed here.
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–Rich

Rich:

As with much of what we say here, there is no black and white only gray and gradations of gray. DD and JL are not entirely responsible and of the things they have done this year some have been great, some have been good and some have been poor. The daughter is back for her second year of high school and that brings me to grades and so I thought I’d throw out a report card here:

On Field Managing: C-
Hitting: B+ (went from a C in the first semester to B+)
Defense: C-
Front Office Mgmt: C- (went from a B+ for the off season to C- because nothing was done sooner)
Clubhouse Mgmt: C- (stubborness by JL offset by the moves like you mentioned with Carlos)
Pitching: C

So, as we sit back and watch the Indian Summer sun set deeper in the autumn sky, we can look back on this campaign with anguish and a certain pain. But that will all soon dissipate because we all know that April 2009 is only 7 months away.

Oh, and just to complete the thought on Granderson versus Ordonez, I was right. Curtis has a higher OBP and slugging (.388 and .518) than Mags (.373 and .479). But he has struck out more (84 v. 63).

One last comment on yesterday’s game … They walk Cab to get to Joyce and JL does not have Joyce bunt. 1 and 2nd nobody out and Joyce is up. Why wouldn’t you bunt here and by the way, if the borther cannot bunt, then ph for him with Raburn or someone else who can. I know it was only the 4th inning but given it was Matt and you had Cab running the bases, why wouldn’t you have laid down the bunt?

Finally, I would find it very dismaying to know that a major league player cannot lay down a simple bunt. Don’t care whether you are a free swinger or what, at some point in your development you have to have been taught how to put a bunt down.

Ponderous.

Back to the Granderson discussion, watching him get even better has probably been my favorite thing about this team this year. His average is higher than last year, less strikeouts, and he’s starting to hit lefties with some consistency. Also, he already has more walks than last year and that’s with missing the first couple of weeks of the season. I’d like to see him steal some more bases (and bunt when needed) but even without that he is still the most exciting player on the team.

Agree- Curtis never disappoints. Shows up every game and give 110%. No wonder he’s the (seemingly) lone guy to continually improve his all around game.

At least we have a shot with Armando pitching tomorrow.

1. Put Inge @ 3rd.
2. Find Guillen a new position(left field)
3. Find a major league catcher(not a 3rd baseman who will catch because he can and wants to play)
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I think those 3 things will help. Not that those are the 3 most important, but I think Inge at 3rd is key.

Just quickly here, Eric, about Joyce bunting. In a huge late inning situation during the Minnesota series preceeding the AS break, Joyce was up in a bunting situation. JL asked Matt if he could bunt and Matt said yes. He botched the job, then we find out he’d only bunted I think three times in his professional career. So here is one of those gray situations. Joyce should have ‘fessed up, but he’s a rookie trying to impress. JL or his staff maybe should have known Matt’s skills better. Anyway, there ya are.
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“as we sit back and watch the Indian Summer sun set deeper in the autumn sky”………that’s nice, man.
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–Rich

Just love the fact that todays game gives another sign that Curtis gives us his 110% … only score on the board comes from the leadoff hitter!
Who leads the league in triples?
Who leads the AL in outfield putouts? Is it our fav “D” or is it Sizemore of Cleveland?
I read that Tris Speaker (6,706) holds the AL record for most, and certainly, Maggs relies on Curtis covering for his lack of speed out thereand helping make him look decent.

Forget strikeouts, as earlier mentioned. OBP and Slugging, offense and defense.. Curtis is the way to build a team around . Period!!

Having said that, I did read where Chet Lemon holds most putouts in a season in outfield from 1977, with 512.
How many has Curtis made this year?

Oh, good old Chester Lemon! I hate to live in the past, it doesn’t get you anywhere I know, but what a tremendous team they had back in the day!

I agree on the Curtis thing – he does seem to give it his all when he plays and I hope they manage to keep him on the team.

I agree that it is crazy that these guys can’t bunt – but then again, Shaq can’t hit a free throw! Amazing that professional athletes cannot at least be mediocre at the basics of the game, and if they aren’t then the should work on those things during bp. A bunt can be worth a home run, just not as sexy I guess. These guys get paid tons of money, and to not be able to lay down a sac bunt is unreal in my mind. Not that I could do it with a 90 mph fastball coming at me, but that isn’t my job either. As an accountant, isn’t is a job requirement to be able to balance a checkbook?

Ah – Indian Summer – I like that and will hope for one to extend my golf season!

Well as we were leaving the game yesterday we were approximate opening day next year. Not sure of the exact day it starts but approximately 208 days!!!!
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Ya Kenny is out of steam I think. He was not only getting hit, they despite staying in the park were all hit hard off of their bats. I think that he might be done.
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Regarding my grades
- pitching staff C- (exluding Gallaraga and Miner –
Verlander flunks and the only reason it is a C- and not a D is because of Galarraga and Miner)
-hitting B- that low because of inconsistency
-coaching staff B-/C+
-Front End Management B

This team has underachieved all the way around. But I still stick by my statement of yesterday. While JL deserved blame he certianly doesn’t deserved the majority of it. That is always one thing in sports that always bugs me. That just because it is easier to fire the manager than players who are are in a union and making a lot more money. It happens all the time. That is why I would rather have somewhat goal based compensation is professional athelete contracts than no matter what your going to get your 10 million or whatever it is. IE) Cabrera you must have 100 RBI’s . Verlander you must have a sub 4.00 era to make x amount if it is higher than that it is a lesser amount. (and so on) Whatever the goals might be.
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Rich I do remember Carlos in left, but I guess that I didn’t realize or remember that it stopped when Inge got hurt.

Well the Freep has an article about JL wanting to stay around for another year. http://freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080905/COL22/809050423/1050/SPORTS02
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He says all the right things about being part of the problem and accepting blame, yada yada, yada.
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Then theres the “happy talk”. About how the model is a good one and getting Zumaya, Bonderman and Willis back will improve everything:
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Leyoand says, “I think our model is fine, we just need it tweaked. We need to get (Joel) Zumaya back, we need to get (Jeremy) Bonderman back, we need to see what we’ve got in (Dontrelle) Willis, and I think we’ll be pretty damn good. I think we’ll be real good.”
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Dream on.
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He forgets that some or all of them may not be ABLE to make it back effectively. This is the old “hope and dream” mentality that he is prone to. He wants to put the same names out there with the “hope” they can achieve past results. Then he can “dream” of how good this team could be if everybody maxed their career numbers in the same season.
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He has finally responded to a very prominent and telling problem regarding the defense:
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“We will be better at it,” he said. “We will be relentless in spring training about defense and defensive concentration.”
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The Tigers have allowed 67 unearned runs — a total Leyland said is too high.
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“We have not played well defensively overall,” he said. “I take full responsibility. … When you haven’t pitched that well and haven’t caught the ball that well, that usually spells disaster. We’re capable of better.”
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Nowhere above does JL give any concrete solutions to the problem other than saying they will be “better” Huh? Like I say, “Hope & Dream”.
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The only thing Leyland has improved on this year are in the areas of Bafflegab and Rhetoric.

Thanks for posting the link to the article. If the players aren’t dumb, well neither are the fans! We don’t forget. A week ago, he complained that the minor league players didn’t do what they were supposed to do, and performed poorly. Too many to list performed poorly on his team. Including what I think , was the leadership by his coaching staff!

The jury is still out , on whether or not Bonderman will ever be as good, the same for Rodney, and Zoom-Zoom. My only opinion to say, is that maybe throwing that hard llike Zumaya has, can definatly put a huge strain on the body. There is something to a mans physics to a long career, and throwing low 90′s, or alot of changeups. Maybe Joel may never be the same he once was. Same for Nate, and Justin.

I hope this winter some changes are made.. not patches, that are just a different colored band-aid!

Leyland can “pound defense” next spring all he wants, but you have to have players with defensive skills. We have very few, and some of the ones we do have are playing the wrong position. A guy like Joyce draws praise from fans who aren’t paying much attention because of his youth and atheleticism, but he’s yet to learn to play the outfield. Worse yet, I’m not sure he’s convinced he needs to.
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Of the three pitchers mentioned, I expect Bonderman to come back effective, maybe improved. Zumaya will never be a factor, and if anyone (JL) takes one giant step backwards and looks around MLB, you’ll see plenty of pitchers with better tools than Zoom has. Willis has the chance to become a Nate Robertson type.

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Bottom line on the manager situation: the Tigers are up there with Boston and New York in payroll. One or both of those teams make the postseason every year. We are going to finish well below .500. You don’t bring back the same management staff when that happens. A club would be foolish to do so.
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Sorry, I like Jim as a person too, but if that was the criteria, Chris Shelton and Mike Maroth would still be starting for us.
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–Rich

And yes, I did misspell athleticism.

Good points Rich. I also believe that Bonderman will bounce back and be effective. If you look at pitchers that have had that surgery they all say that their range of motion is better and most come back stronger than before.
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On the defense point, if JL wants to “pound” defense, why not start now? What’s the point in waiting until spring. Put Inge back at 3rd for the rest of the year and get a good look at Dusty Ryan catching at this level for the remainder of the year. Edgar’s bat has come around a bit, but his defensive ability lacks, so I would give the Razor extended time and at bats at short to see what he could do playing every day for a couple weeks. There is really nothing to lose at this point so why not take the last few weeks of the season to assess what the team looks like for next year.

We need a lot. We need a shortstop, a starting left-hander, a closer, a set-up guy and a catcher minimum.
The problems at 3B and LF can be filled internally I feel.
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A leadoff guy would be great. Love to have a Jimmy Rollins here. He can do it all. He would shore up the D, give us a SH and a proven SB man and allow us to drop Curtis down in the order. Dream on eh?
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The pitching and the defense are critical. JL does not seem to buy into that though and prefers to think that the same personnel will produce different results if he wishes for it hard enough. I think he may have stopped taking his Cognex.
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The other critical positions to be reconciled are short and catcher. If they can come up with solid solutions for those 2 positions (and they are able to renew, rejuvenate the pitching), then they can say they have a chance.
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Going into next year with Renteria and Inge at those positions is a capitulation.
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Get a solid catcher and a game-changer at short and you can afford to play Inge at 3rd where he belongs.

Really to me all JL has done throughout the year is pound home how important pitching is?? I quote “you are only as good as your next days pitching”. The very thing that a lot of people on here and out and about have criticized him for saying.

Guess that shows how much good “pounding” does.

All great comments and we are saying the sames thing over and over. Here are my thoughts. Mr. I will want a winner. He will not be happy with a sub .500 team. He needs to hear what the fans are saying that this Leyland team is boring and not fun to watch. The Mets fired Willie Randolph and now look at where they are. JL not bunting for the extra run, not putting players where they belong, not getting in Verlander’s face, I hope he had a talk with Curtis sho I can’e believe threw to the wrong base. I agree on the comment about Boston and New York making they playoffs or at least being in the race. Come on Mr I. Get an agressive young manager. Hey, how about Matt Walbeck? Go Tigers! –Dave

Wow I guess that is my point, you can beg you can plead, and he could of done freaking back flips. But the pitching staff didn’t live up anywhere near their expectations. And he sent Willis away, Bondo was injured. What is he supposed to do get rid of the whole staff. He had to try to get through with what they had. They tried to add a few pieces to the pen. And you all watch the same games that I do, One day Glover, Fossum and Farnworth look good. The next they are horrible. One time out Robertson would be good, then next two he would be horrible. My point is that you never know if these guys are coming out of a funk or what.
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I cannot believe that it comes to me having to defend JL. He was given a high priced staff that for the most part has way underachieved, some of it he is responsible for without a doubt but it comes down to players with track records going out there and performing. And they have not. You cannot have these overlypaid premadonnas sitting on the bench. Do you think that Illitch would be happy to hear that Renteria, Magglio, Verlander or all but two or three of his pitchers were sitting on the bench or more importantly if they are being replaced or set to Toledo??

Ya gotta take what pitchers give ya. One thing Liariano gives you, is the bunt down the first base side. His mechanics and delivery leave him highly susceptible to being unable to field bunts in that area. Granderson doesn’t bunt much but either Santiago, Renteria or Polanco should be able to drop one down there.
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Rich, you don’t seem to like Joyce much out in left. Maybe he can play 3rd base!!!
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I do like the fact he is playing winter ball. That might help. At least he runs some balls down. I don’t think Maggs has caught a foul fly all year.
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Speaking of leadoff men. Santiago could do it. The jury is still out wheterh he can contribute enough offensively over a full season though.
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Freddy Guzman can fly but he would probably be a very light hitting OF with no power.
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Clete Thomas stole almost 30 in Toledo in limited time there. Again, not much power and where doe he fit in Detroit?
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Ideally, we need to go out and get a leadoff man who can give you great speed and great D as well as hold his own at the plate. Reyes, Rollins, ?
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Still dreamin’

BTW, Big Mike has not made an error since June of 2004!!
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Maybe we should call him Iron Mike!

I to like the fact that Joyce is going to play winter ball. It is easy to so were he could be of great value hitting in a park like Comerica. He has some power and has power to both fields and the gaps. But he is real easy to get out right now you just have to throw him something offspead and he will swing and miss. I agree with Rich though I don’t like him in the field that much. He has some to learn anyway. He is young and maybe a little more time he could be good. He does have some speed.
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I hope Mike gets some more time at third with Carlos still out. He has been pretty good over there. The Dome could be difficult for him tonight. God I hate that Dome. I can hardly stand to watch a game that is played there. It is dark and the stinking carpet. Not to mention the Twins who actually just pound the ball into the turf and get infield hit after infield hit, because of that stupid turf.
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I was kinda suprised not to see Clete come back up. But I think that he may of underperformed in the hitting department after he went back down.
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I also agree with you about Santiago. We all know that he is defensively superior. And he has batted well this year. But I agree can he do it over a full season?? He has never proven that. I think that he may be a different hitting Santiago this year though.
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Liriano is going to be tough tonight. He has been darn good since he has come back.

Sometimes it almost seemed like Leyland was trying to make up for having a slow team by…wishing they were faster; too slow for stolen bases? hmm, OK, then maybe a DOUBLE-steal will work!
It’s one thing to be slow, fine that’s a limitation you have to work around. But when you are slow and try to run anyway, and slow and can’t advance runners with bunts, and slow and can’t hit sac flies, you have problems.

The Tigers are 26th out of 30 teams in stolen base %. Not in stolen bases, in stolen base PERCENTAGE. It’s not amusing to me that Ordonez and Thames are a combined 1/9 in SB.

[The Tigers are 20th and 24th in sac flies and sac bunts]

Also from today’s Freep:
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DEFENSE RESTING: The Tigers have committed 103 errors, second-most in the American League. Leyland said Thursday that he intends to emphasize improved defensive play in spring training next year.

“We will be better at it,” he said. “We will be relentless in spring training about defense and defensive concentration.”

The Tigers have allowed 67 unearned runs — a total Leyland said is too high.

“We have not played well defensively overall,” he said. “I take full responsibility. … When you haven’t pitched that well and haven’t caught the ball that well, that usually spells disaster. We’re capable of better.”
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Hope & Dream. What does ful responsibility mean again? Oh right, it means SAYING it.
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It might have a bit to do with not having good defensive players on the field skip! Fix the left side of the infield and you fix 75% of the problem.
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BTW, saying we are better, or that you are puzzled or confused, or that you had a nice conversation with somebody and that you like him, like him alot, to be honest with you, don’t mean a gall-darned thing. Jim Leyland is in job protection mode guys so beware, the excuses may come at your expense.

This team WAS hitting LHP very well earlier on. Lately it seems as though they have been somewhat handcuffed by them. Should be an interesting game nevertheless. Grandy the only LHB against a very good LHP. I’d love to see Curtis get white hot and take the team batting title.
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The Tigers need to call up Ian Oslund. Bobby Seay has struggled lately and Rapada will always be Rapada and nothing more. Forgotten Fossum is still around but realistically is playing to his potential. We need more.

Say It Twice Price is interviewing Honest Abe right now. Jimbo is somewhat critical during a game or warapping it up but he is pretty polite and almost saccharine when he interviews “The Skipper”. I guess it’s All in the Family. Nothing but homogenized pulp in this interview.
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Hessman plays tonight and he is putting together some pretty good swings. I’d love to see him switch on and become a MLB player but the downside is if he does that almost guarantees that Brandon Inge will become our catcher. I shudder at the thought.

I hope Dusty Ryan is a better palyer than he is an interviewee. C’mon Dusty let’s get excited alittle bit.

We need to show the Twins that we are a formidable opponent and that they should respect us.

G-man–what are you doing dude?

well 3 walks in an inning and you limit them to 1 run is not too bad.
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Hopefully G-Man has got the kinks ironed out now.

Well- this simply must be said. The Tigers look like canine feces so far tonight. This team that was supposed to be an offensive juggernaut, has never, ever given the indication that they can constently be a threat agains womeever wehenver. Pitching and D have hurt tremendously but the hitting has also been found wanting.

Morneau up—gonna be game over right here unless we luck out with a DP

Geez–those damn Canadians eh! I’d love this guy on my team. Along with Dempster, Harden, Bay, Teahen, and Jeff Francis.
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This one is over. C-L-I-C-K!

These guys are stinking the Metrodome out tonight. That’s just awful.
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They should be ashamed. Twins announcer got something right an inning or two ago. He said the Tigers have “a lot of work to do to become a contender”. How far the mighty have fallen to elicit a comment like that.

Where do we start if the Tigers want to go somewhere next year??
One thing, if you cant pay for performance, stop buying has beens on big $$ Contracts. Cut your losses and get rid of the worst ones – they purely drain the dugout of motivation as they wallow in their past glories that will never be repeated on a sustainable basis. Trade Sheffield for 1$ now and with Willis, how you correct mental as well as mechanical problems is likely to be too big a task but worth a try given his good attitude. Why he was bought in the first place – his mechanics were never good and his figures were slipping badly from 22-10 2.63 in 05 to 10-15 5.17 in 07.
Our team for most of the season totally lacked inspiration and adrenaline in the field which follows through with the at- bats. You can hopefully teach these pros how to bunt but you can’t teach tired old overweight bodies how to be quick and athletic in defence. And Leyland thinks he can solve this with the current squad?? What hope have you got if you are slow and still lead the league in errors??
Whilst our starting pitching has been awful, hopefully if Bonderman comes back OK, we can find one more from the farm (G-Man came from nowhere) to replace Rogers with Verlander (has to be tought the facts of life or be traded), Nate or Willis to fight out the remaining spot.
I feel our offensive lapses have reflected the negative attitude and low energy levels of the team. These unmeasurable factors are a key to why the team has sucked for most of the year and may also reflect why all our closers since Jones got sore have seemed to lose any confidence and had a severe dose of stage fright. The one time of the game you need attitude and it has been nowhere to be seen.
3rd and SS and are linchpin defensive positions and cannot be compromised unless the person can hit over 310 and 100RBI’s. Renteria and Carlos are not working out and suggest Carlos and Thames share DH and pinch hitting next year. It is imperative that Ryan & Santiago are given a decent go for the remainder of the year with Inge at 3rd.
I suppose what I am suggesting for next year is we don’t need to throw the baby out with the bath water. However, Leyland will need to go in order to fix the mindset changes which have been a major problem of the team. A young aggressive head coach might also help to stop management buying over the hill has beens.

PITCHING PITCHING PITCHING. Walks kill. And that was the story of the night.

Dave–that was as good an observation as I have seen all year. Not just well-written but very accurate as well. Read it and week Dave dombrowski—the truth hurts.

Man, 5 hits and Inge 3 for 3.
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I see JL gave all the “regulars” a rest of sorts at the end of the game. That was an awful display of baseball. It worries me to even expose the Toledo guys to this mindset up here in the show. I hope they do not get contaminated by what they see and feel in that clubhouse.
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Well we know Ryan can’t be worse at the plate than what we saw our “catcher” do today. Seeing new faces on this Tiger team is about the only thing we really have to look forward to anymore.
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If Verlander comes out stinking tomorrow and it permeates the lineup, it will be time to start going to Lions games.
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What I saw tonight was not the Detroit Tigers. More like the Detroit Llamas. Not much better than sheep.

Geez–those damn Canadians eh! I’d love this guy on my team. Along with Dempster, Harden, Bay, Teahen, and Jeff Francis.
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Erik Bedard would look good too and may as well throw in Gagne.

I like your thoughts above Dave b 2008.
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Now as for the game(Game?….I didn’t see any game. We want a REAL game………”The Natural”) That was pathetic, except for Marcus who actually came to play tonight. There is so much this team needs you don’t know where to begin. I guess you’re allowed to dream Dan, but the truth is, the payroll is already inflated to the point of being obnoxious, and why would any team want to trade any of those names you were throwing out there.
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It disappoints me the lack of confidence many folks have with Santiago as our everyday starting shortstop. I say take a chance with him. Move Inge to 3rd where he belongs (although when he seems clueless and over matched at the plate like tonight) I wonder if I can put up with that for another season. He’s GOT to learn to hit. Is that possible? But I still say he and Santiago would be our best bets on the left side of the infield, and their play would offset any hitting deficiencies. Lets see what Ryan can do catching. (JL, stop it with the stupid Inge catching experiment. It’s wasting the talent that Brandon has.) Do ya think you could actually take a real look at Ryan? I mean more than the complimentary 2 or 3 games you might have in mind. What good is that gonna do?.
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These guys watched so many strikes go by tonight and they were swinging at so many crap pitches in the dirt…. they just seem lost at the plate and it’s almost sickening, because these are the Twins, who once again school us in the game of baseball, doing it with half our payroll. Well guess what, they actually keep their young pitchers and develop them like you’re supposed to. (Please don’t go out and try to fix all these problems with more expensive acquisitions DD.) Why not have a little patience and take a good look at what you have in the system and develop them. It works for the Twins.
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I recognize Shef and Edgar as accomplished, if not great players with great careers, and I respect them for that, but they are not going to be able to help this team next year. There are already 3 other potential DHers on the roster……..Thames, Guillen, and Ordonez. I’m not so sure if there’s room for all 3 of them even, but I think I would keep them if possible. Somehow maybe they could all be platooned in the OF when not DHing. Would be a strange experiment but it might work.
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We need some youth and speed in the outfield and on the base paths. Would Wilkin Ramirez be ready for a shot? How about Clevlen? Joyce maybe has earned a spot. Larish’s only hope is learning to play OF, not 3rd. Maybe Big Mike as a utility infielder. On a side note, it’s interesting that the Marlins apparently had enough depth in the OF to continue the development of Cameron Maybin down in the minors.

.Pitching…….yikes, something has to be done. Someone has to break out or come through. Right now the only starters getting the job done are Galarraga and Miner. Armondo needs to get his control down and he will be fine. Miner will continue to improve if he can develop the confidence. He seems to be. JL needs to allow him to do that. Everyone else is a question mark…..including the pen. Again I say yikes.
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There is so much that can and will be discussed in the long winter ahead, but I’m beginning to think that this team actually did all it could do this year. I mean maybe they all played to their potential given their a ages and also given the multiple injuries that plagued the team all season.
There were so many failures, disappointments, and failed experiments. I pin more than half of it on DD and JL. They failed in putting together a winning team. It never was. The pitching was weak from the beginning, and the hitting just proved the old addage, good pitching will stop good hitting. And when you ain’t got your own good pitching or good defense, your toast in MLB. JL, in my opinion, didn’t use his players to obtain maximum results. He could have put a better defense on the field, but the truth is, with the pitching and injuries he had to deal with, maybe he could have squeezed out 5 more wins.
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There were more heartbreaking losses this year, and more “stinkers” too….I don’t know if I could put up with another year of it. Anyway, it’s late and I am rambling………..got to save some thoughts for another day.

How did I forget Russell Martin. Now there’s a pretty solid backstop for ya’. He’d look good catching Bedard, Francis and Harden.
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Sorry folks. Just getting lost in a little True North reverie,

Let’s keep things in perspective re the Verlander/Leyland nonsense. JL likes to push his weight around with the younger players it seems. This from the dt News:
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Tom Gage / The Detroit News
MINNEAPOLIS — Justin Verlander starts today against the Twins, his first game since questions swirled about whether he makes too many excuses.

The last time Verlander pitched, he got lit up on Labor Day by the Yankees and blamed a tight strike zone. He actually didn’t, but that’s the way it sounded to manager Jim Leyland from Verlander’s postgame comments.

Saying he wasn’t being critical or trying “to start something,” Leyland countered by saying players should learn to say they are bad when they are bad and not use “diversionary tactics” such as blaming an umpire’s strike zone or shifting the blame elsewhere.

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It wasn’t a sharp exchange, because it really wasn’t an exchange at all — and certainly not a spat. Leyland wasn’t angry with Verlander, nor was Verlander offended by what his manager had to say.

The Tigers right-hander is nothing if not headstrong, however. In a subsequent conversation with Leyland, he conveyed his point — and one can only think Verlander believes he wasn’t making excuses at all.

He mentioned the tight strike zone in passing when talking about his performance, but at no time blamed it for his bad start. In fact, he was quite clear in shouldering the blame himself.

Here’s what he had to say about umpire Chuck Meriwether’s strike zone in that game, but also about himself after the 13-9 loss. The comments about himself are far more numerous.

“As a pitcher,” said Verlander, “you know there are going to be times you have bad starts, and I guess it’s just kind of ingrained in us to focus on the next one.

“My control was erratic, the guy behind the plate had a tight zone, but that happens in the big leagues. I don’t think he was unfair.

“I’m not saying he was unfair by any means. I don’t want that come across that way. It’s just that some guys are tighter than others. I don’t think that had anything to do with the result.

“The point is I was not able to make pitches when I needed to. I feel I made some decent pitches that got hit. The bad ones I made got hit as well. When all is said and done, you need to make pitches to get out of innings.

“It was all-around a tough one for me, but now it’s over, and I’m focusing on my next start because that’s what I do, and that’s what you have to be able to do to be a good pitcher.”

Excuses?

Depends how you look at it.

Yes, Verlander said the umpire’s strike zone was tight, but didn’t dwell on it — and even twice said it wasn’t unfair.

But he also said he didn’t make the pitches he needed to. In that sense, he blamed only himself.

Bottom line, he starts again today. And whether he does well, it’s a safe bet he won’t mention umpire Tim Tschida’s strike zone at all.

Except, perhaps, to praise it.

Regardling last night games yes it was a stinker. We did not see our usual Galarraga that is for sure. And our hitters well, lets just say tha Liriano was far superior. I usually don’t like to give the other pitcher too much credit in this case however when you have Polance swinging at the pitch he did to strike out the DUDE was on. But someone up above called Inge out last night (and lets face it Inge has had trouble all yaer) But last night Curtis was also 0-4 with three strikeouts. There were a lot of strikeouts last night.
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Now regarding was Verlander has said. I disagree. In the paper it sounds all nice but in the post game interview it sure sounded like to me that he was making excuses and in talking to a few people that thought the same. He has been making excuses all year. And if I hear one more time from him or anyone else that is just baseball to justify a bad game I will scream. That being said he is young and this year is probably the first time in his life that he has had such trouble. He has always been the boy wonder. So it doesn’t necessarily shock me that he says stuff like that.
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I agree regarding Sheff and Renteria. But give these guys a little credit as well. In the beginning of the year when none of these dudes were hitting Renteria had two Slams and was the only guy who was hitting. Sheff has really come on since the Allstar break and he deserves credit for that, instead of people saying that they were just meaningless homers. I guess as meaningless as Thames last night and Grandersons the day before?? I do hope he gets his 500th this year so he can retire. But I sure don’t think that Illitch will just throw 14 mil out the window. And my guess is that no one will take him with that contract. So we may as well resign ourselves to him being back next year.

Dave and Marty, thanks for comments so now I do not have to type the same things. I am not blaming Leyland, I just think we need a change. It was fresh and new in 2006 but now it is stale. Why do we fade at the end of the year while other teams do not? We have put together some great players but where is our development in the minor leagues? Where is our coaching and managing. I think the younger players are more willing to listen. Don’t trade Maggs or Carlos! We tried the Renteria experiment but it did not work so move on. Trades are not 100% guaranteed. I vote for Ramon at short. Someone remind JL what is batting average is. Go Tigers! –Dave

Oh yea, and his OBP is .440

Amen to all the above!… Three past years we have slide at the end. Not needing to look backward all the time, but we do need some effective changes.
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#1 Pitching- Good pitching shuts down good hitters all the time. Give a pitcher one run and he holds it. Game won.
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#2 Defense- Good defense traps extra base hits, and prevents runners from making it past first base. Good pitching will get you out of the innings unscathed.
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#3 Policy- Stop tinkering with weekly changes that mess up the routine, and system. It doesn’t work. If a player comes up from the minors as a first basemen, don’t expect him to become a third basemen, or visa versa. Players need to know they are playing, and keep them there. Same goes for lineups.
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#4 Offense- Proven hitters come thru , one strategy may be to hit the long ball, and no base stealing, preventing injuries, but others win games by consecutive hits in gaps. A bunt can be just as important as a sac fly getting into scoring position, or scoring.
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#5 Effective management- A fish dies from the head back. If coaching and managing are dead, it transends down to the players. (ex. Kenny Rogers decline, an experience veteran. How has any player improved pitching this year?
Or batters, with exception to Granderson? How many times we saw CH go out to mound to talk to pitcher, walks back to dugout, and poom! Hr, or basehit! Thats not much of a pep talk)
Poor decisions cost games.
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Add to this all you want or throw hot dog wrappers at me.. but it’s hard to take, seeing the poor performance of anything, Baseball, is a business, as well as an entertainment tool, that is being not run correctly.

Sorry, I already know in advance, that I’m going to offend some here, but:

Do we really want to hear that they’re will be “change” next year, if we don’t have a clue what that change is going to be. For JL to say for instance that the “defense will drastically change next spring…” WHOOPTIE freaking do!!!! You’ve hardly mentioned it all year you moron and now comes September, and you’re now making it a big issue?? You’re only fooling people who don’t care about baseball JL. In my brilliance, I’ve now concluded that you Leyland, are an idiot!!! You consistently play the people(even to this very day) that you absolutely must know are NOT going to yield anything long lasting thats beneficial to this team. When does it end? And if you’re telling us that, “I’m playing the people that I have….” well, then you’re playing them too much, JL. And, as long as your trying for last place, why don’t you bring up 1/2 a roster of people down below and see if we have a Fydrich?? But, don’t give us this “change” bs. We get enough of that CRAP from Obama. And, you’re particular “change” is worse than what we already have, just like Obama!!!! He’ll bankrupt the country, and you’ll bankrupt the team. Your two fakes , cut from the same mold it seems….

It’s not all of your fault, to be clear. But, you’ve more than done your part to decimate what should have been a very good team…… You talk, naturally, as if you’ll be coming back. This sends shivers down my 41 year fan Tiger spine. It would be nice if we could all decide the next mgr/pitching coach, in the voting booth !!!!

GO MACAIN/PALIN !!!!!!

I think it says something when you can’t spell the name of the candidate you support. By the way my nick is from four years ago, and does not mean I support the Republicans.
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On next year, if the Tigers get rid of Sheff, Inge and Rentoria, and get a catcher, I’m okay with JL staying. Really, I’m not happy is he’s here, but there are bigger problems than him.
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Let’s stop talking about Inge playing third with his .215 average. He’s almost as much of a rally-killer as Sheff.
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And that’s saying something.

I was thinking the same thing on Inge after watching his horrible day at the plate. Do we really need a great fielding 3rd baseman who check-swings on the 3rd strike batting a measly .215? I think I’d rather see Hessman at third at this point unless Inge is going to cut down his swing and concentrate on getting hits not homers.

I wonder if Leo Mazzone would be interested in being the Tigers pitching coach after watching the game today. He had some good insights into Verlander and his troubles, and he couldn’t do much worse than CH.

Geez, you know the Tigers are in trouble when we start talking politics!!
I don’t believe it, we won a close game yet were outhit, made no errors, hit homers with guys on bases and our relief held up with only an unlucky, well pitched walk by Rodney.
When the team has spark, these things happen, yet we can’t rely purely on Granderson to provide all the team energy which is the main ingredient for team chemistry instilling confidence.
I know noone in their right mind will buy out Sheffields contract but you can’t have negativity sitting around the dugout for another year. Sheff has hit .23 after and .217 before the All- Stars with the .23 largely helped when he got ‘mad’ for a week.
How do you teach an old dog new tricks? JL gives the old boys ongoing chances with the AAA guys lucky to get 3 games.
Inge deserves another chance. His great defence with a 250 average and 70-80 RBI’s which he achieved over 06&07 will do me.

If they keep Inge, and I would actually prefer to get something that can ptich for him, the only way they can afford to play him is as a 3rd baseman. He will be a factor defensively at that position in terms of wins and losses. As a catcher he will be a negative and a negative compoinded by the assignment impacting him offesnsively as well. As a 3rd baseman he is a game changer-and that capacity can lead itself to a better mental framework to take up to the plate with you too.
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If he is the Tigers catcher next year then they are either severely misguided, pathologically delusional, or just plain stupid. Regardless, he will never be a good dependable, consisten or reliable hitter. He has too many bad habits to change. .260, 15-20 HRs and 75-80 RBIs would be a bonus. You could live with that. I don’t thinik he can do it though.
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Sheffield has to go. He is dead weight and a demoralizing influence on the team. Anyone who can’t see that, doesn’t want to.
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Renteria is salvaging a poor season. If he can limp through this one good for him but he is not a solution in any way at short for this team next year. I still can hardly believe he has outright DROPPED 2 pop-ups this year and looks frightened wheneve another one might come his way. His range is extremely limited and to be honest, Cab has bailed him out quite lot lately on some pretty poor throws. There’s just not enough meat on the bone to be an impact player as far as I can see. He’s done his best but that kind of sums it up doesn’t it?
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If they do somethign about those 2 guys I will be very encouraged.
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They still need to solidify the rotation with a premier starter. And they need to get someone who can throw strikes 3/4 of the time in late innings in the bullpen. You smply cannot suffer through situations at tteh end of the game where opponents can sit on a pitch because you are behind in the count constantly.
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We also need a surprise, a Joyce or a Clevlen or a Ramirez or a Worth or a Ryan or a Moscoso to come out of nowhere and bring new energy and another dimension to the team.
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Trades are another option but I (as much as I would like to see the “names” on the roster) think going after Free Agents may be counter productive.
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Looking forward to tomorrows game to see what Ryan might be able to do. I presume that means Inge will play 3rd but I hope they have the temerity to play Iron Mike too.
I didn’t wathc the game today opting instead to see a matinee movie. Everyone has their preferences but I thought it was a good choice.
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Ordonez looks like he has got himself untracked. That’s nice to see again. I wonder how he would adapt to a DH role? I think it was Rich who brought up the possibility of alternating him in that role with Guillen and Thames. I do think that role is also one that is suited for Carlos.
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My feeling is that Carlos will the 3rd sacker next year and Inge the catcher. I sure hope not.

You’re correct there Mr. Bush hater. Just seeing if anyone would notice!?

It’s true, it’s getting old banging on Sheff and Inge everyday. Just trying to spice this blog up a little.

I didn’t know we had Tigers insiders on this blog. I personally am not in the clubhouse, and would like to know how anyone on this blog has any idea if Sheffield is a bad influence on the clubhouse and he is demoralizing??? In fact if yesterday some of you may of heard who watched the game Leo Mezzoni stated that when Sheff was with Atlanta what a good influence and teammate he was. Frankly I don’t know whether he is or he isn’t and neither does anyone on this blog.
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When is the last time anyone on here had anything positive to say??? Everyone knows that there are problems on this TEAM, but that is exactly what it is, they win together and lose together.
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Mitch is correct it is getting real old all the banging on Sheff, Renteria, Inge and JL.

Hey Anyonebutbush,
You criticized a blogger for not correctly spelling his Republican candidate. From one Tiger fan to another, it’s Renteria, not Rentoria. With all due respect.

Greg

I haven’t seen a live game since Wednesday. Had to work Thursday and Friday we went to see Bob Newhart in DC. That was much better than a 10-2 game, plus the old boy’s still got it at 79. I was blacked out yesterday on Fox.
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I only watched the 8th inning archive from yesterday’s game. Looks like Grandy and Maggs both hit hanging breaking balls, which is exactly what you’re supposed to do with those. Good job by both. And that was a big walk that Razor drew. Got Baker out of there.
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I assume Verlander was his usual self, near as I could tell from the box. Rodney could benefit from Valium or something so he’d calm down. I’m serious. He overthrows the fastball too much.
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Looks like the Twins did indeed have it rough on that west coast trip I’d anticipated. Too bad we couldn’t hang in the race longer to take advantage.
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It will be interesting to see Dusty Ryan today.
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–Rich

I watched the condensed version and from what I could tell Verlander pitched OK. Not great but certainly better than a couple of his recent performances. Santiago is looking pretty good out there at short. He did struggle at the dish yesterday though.
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I see Hessman and Ryan are playing today. I am a bit surprised (though not unhappy by any means) at that as I though I heard JL say something about plyaing his regulars against contenders. I figure throwing 3 rookies in one game against a contender may not be viewed too favourable by Ozzie Guillen. Thought for sure he would play Inge at 3rd.
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Hopefully the D gives Lambert some solid support. He has suffered from poor defense in both his starts so it is difficult to get a read on him.
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I’m hoping for a quality start for Lambert, Dusty Ryan getting his firs MLB hit plus throwing out 2 base runners, and Big Mike supplying us a 3 run jack.
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I hope this ump is as generous with Lambert as he was with Perkins. I do like thw way that Perkins goes after it.

That’s great! Nice to see the kid come up and just “do it”. Stilll need Big Mike to get his and Lambert to throw 6 quality innings.

Geez-the D seems to underperform when Lambert pitches. Granderson’s throw could have and should have been a better one that. I didn’t see Hessmans error. Did he boot it?

Well so much for that. Those M&M boys sure know hit that baseball don’t they?
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We were fortunate to keep Gomez off the bases or that would have been a nasty inning.
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Holy cow! Lambert must be wondering why these guys are major leaguers. Horrible base-running.

Nice try by Granderson to break up the DP but I just shake my head at leyland not recognizing the value in stealing with his leadoff man.
.Curtis has 90 singles 62 walks and 14 attempted steal!!!
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C’mon Leyland smarten up. Twins seem to know what to do with their leadoff man.

Man on 2nd, and the M&M boys coming up. Someho I think they will deliver.

Over 150 times times Curtis has been standing on 1st base and only 10% of those times has he attempted a steal.
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This explains part of the reason why we have guys like Orodnez among the league leaders in GIDP.

Hessman charged a slow hopper, Dan, then threw the ball away. Had plenty of time too. That cost Lambert yet another run. Granderson throws to the wrong base again. Thames commits a little league baserunning gaff. Man.
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JL is saying he’s going to address how poorly we do against the Central in spring training. If anyone knows what that means, I’d sure like to know. See, this is the stuff that makes us dislike him.
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Lambert has had excellent control. He’s getting hurt on what are good pitches. Meanwhile, I like the looks of Ryan behind the plate. Very smooth. The homer doesn’t hurt, obviously, but I’m watching his defense more.
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Big Cab goes deep, Sheff doubles, Thames drives in a run but runs into his second out of the game. Renteria doubles. Little things.
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And there’s no point in hitting Granderson lead off if we’re never going to give him the steal sign.
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–Rich

Tough break for Marcus. I mean how often do you see an absolutley perfect throw?

Thanks Rich. Hessman struggling a bit now.
I actually would have grenn-lighted him on the 3-0 pitch.
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Let’s go Curtis get right after it!

Curtis is becoming something special isn’t he? The way he has attacked LHP this year has been a dramatic change.
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Kudos to Ryan for drawing that walk to keep things going.

Well Seay has been struggling lately big time. Hopefull he can shut the door on the little pests.

Dusty is having a hard time with the dome roof. :-) Hopefully he can get out of here without having to track a popup. He’s looked just fine so far, and I’d certainly like to see some more. On the other hand, it may only result in giving me something else to complain about. :-)
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–Rich

Twins looking like us right now.
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Looks like Maggs is back.

Hey, we manufactured a run. With Cabrera as the baserunner. Go figure. Good sac fly, Marcus.

Enter Matt Joyce: Defensive Specialist.

Game of inches eh!
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Seay has been a little unlucky and lucky. I’d rather see him just be good.

That umpire should have just punched out Span at first so Polly would make Webgems. What a play.
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It’s amazing how much damage two hitters can do for the Twins.

Hessman and Ryan have to be the tallest 8 and 9 hitters in the history of the game. :-)

Drives me nuts. Why not bunt with Ryan?

Placido is becoming Popanco. Man.

Well I hope we some defense now. The Twins know how to pressure the defense. I’d bring Inge in to play3rd here and Clevelen to play RF. Opps I guess we won’t be able to do that will we?
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Truthfully though, in a close game like this I would bring in Inge but I would leave Orodnez out there in the event it gose to extra innings.

Farnsworth has really settled into his role lately. On top of throwing hard and having a good breaking ball, the guy can throw strikes.
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I suppose we will see the “montaña rusa” in the bottom of the 9th

No, it was Fernando Rodney. :-)

Must have felt good for Rodney to get Mr. Morneau.

Boy of Todd Jones was the “ROLLERCOASTER” Fernando is the “DEMON DROP”. He scares me far worse than Todd Jones ever did. As the guys on Fox yesterday were saying Todd Jones didn’t succeed all those years because he had great stuff he succeeded because he had the mentality. Sometimes I wonder if Fernando has the mentality. I actually think that Zumaya is more suited for it but can he ever stay healthy???
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Well even though it doesn’t mean much it was certianly nice to get a series win especially against a contending team and especially in that god forsaken Metro Dome.

Only three more trips to the dome, GK, then never again.
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Leyland: “I’m going to play the [lineup] that gives us the best chance to win the game, both against the Twins and the White Sox,” Leyland said. “I don’t want to hear any weak comments from Minnesota or Chicago that we weren’t playing our guys. Not that they would, but I’m just saying. So I think the stakes are real big for us, obviously the stakes are real big for them.”
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The lineup that gives us the best chance to win is up for debate, and has been for most of the season. It doesn’t enter his mind that he might be wrong, does it? I don’t even know why he makes statements like these, anyway.
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Here’s my favorite story from the past week: Trevor Thompson, interviewing Miguel Cabrera after one of his many big game-changing homers, asks his typical “how did it feel to hit a big homer like that?” question. Miguel, in his broken English, replies “Well, you don’t feel it when you hit the ball good. It fly off the bat, but you don’t feel nothing. It just go.” A perfectly literal answer to a very psycho-babble question. Good answer, Miguel. I love this guy.
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–Rich

Rich interesting. When we talk about the best line up. Funny but I wonder if we did give them our best lineup??? Even though I do think that Inge is probably a better 3rd baseman than Hessman, I don’t think that Hessman is bad eithers (despite the throwing error yesterday) But I can say that yesterday was the first time in a long time I didn’t have to see a strikeout completed at 1st?? I didn’t see a pass ball, and I saw pitches blocke well consistently. I do think that it is too early to completely judge Dusty, it was only one game but what I have seen I like, homerun aside. I do think that Inge needed a day off, hit hitting has even been more pitiful than usual. So maybe yesterday it was our best lineup??? Just a thought. Now what might be nice to see is Inge at 3rd tonight and Dusty behind the dish again.

Miguel is the man – and great comment to the reporter – I love it! Maggs is hitting much better lately, glad to see that. Curtis too is hitting terrific – just am wondering on his throws lately what is up – is he too hyped up to make the play that he can sometimes be so off on his throws? Not riding him – I love him and think he is a huge asset to the team and a spark to the team.

I know – Miguel for president!

By the way, the announcers were funny yesterday trying to figure out why Miguel wanted that homerun ball – I had to leave and didn’t watch it anymore, anyone know why he was intent on getting that?

Am going to my first game of the season Wednesday in I believe good seats – right behind the Tiger’s dugout I believe in the first 10 rows or so. Look for me – I’ll be wearing a tiger’s shirt!

Okay, behind Tiger dugout, lady in Tiger shirt………yeah, you should stand right out. :-)
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That was Cabrera’s 1000th career hit, so that’s why he wanted the ball. Not that he keeps track of these things…….. That’s a lot of hits for a 25-year old.
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Granderson may be trying to do too much. He doesn’t have a great arm to start with, but a lot of these throws are to home when he should be throwing into the infield to keep the runners from advancing. Just proves that nobody’s perfect.
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I thought one of the reasons there were no passed balls was Lambert’s style of pitching. He demonstrated great control, hitting Ryan’s mitt time after time. Dusty did look good back there. It’s just one game, but I’m really rooting for him. I’d like management to discover an alternative to Inge as a catcher. There’s also Vance Wilson, maybe?
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–Rich

Ya maybe regarding Lambert and Ryan (I thought that as well) however he wasn’t having problems with Farnsworth, Rodney or Seay either??
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I was able to watch most of the game yesterday and caught up on the blogs. I agree with you GK in that I don’t think there is really any hard evidence that Shef is a negative influence in the clubhouse. In fact I’ve seen him congratulating other players. He probably keeps to himself more than most players and at the same time has his own view of things, but he seems focused. You know, as poor a season as he has had, every time he steps into the box I believe there is a chance something good will happen. Looking at his career stats, I see he had bad years in 91, 97, and 98. At bats were down so he was probably injured. The thing is he came back. Of course at 40 that’s no longer a given, but still a possibility. Problem is he’s a pull hitter, can’t muscle out that outside corner pitch, and will need to go the opposite way if he is going to continue with any success. He has done that a little bit more lately I think.
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I said I felt he could not help this team in 2009, but I meant more that in keeping him, it ties up other options…..like Ordonez, Guillen, or Thames DHing and playing OF. This would open up an OF position (or at least 1/2-3/4 of one) to develop a young player/ Clevelen or Joyce. Also it would free up 3rd for Inge or maybe even Hessman.
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I’ll repeat what many of us are saying that if you’re gonna keep Inge it would be a waste of his defensive talent to catch him. What point is that? I say 3rd base or trade him. Now I might throw in another idea. How about trying him at shortstop? .255, 15 HR’s and 70 RBIs would be acceptable. I think he deserves one more legitimate chance in the IF…….that or trade him.
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Ryan made a pretty good case for himself. I’m excited, but it’s one game. He needs to follow up with more of the same. Kind of a Joe Mauer type catcher with that height of his. Like how he plays though.
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I was happy for Lambert too. It worked out well for him.
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JL has got to stop with the defensive explanations for who he is playing. Do what is best for our team JL. Don’t worry about what other teams expect. The only obligation this team has is to play each game the best they can. No let ups…….just like the first game of the season. They are all pros and know what to do by now. That’s pretty simple. Besides, these young guys are pretty hungry I imagine. The door of opportunity doesn’t open very often.
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I still love Marcus….the guy makes some mistakes but he gives it his all every game….. just mashes the ball.
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Tiger Girl, you have given us very little to go on……10 or so rows up, Tigers jersey. It’s like Where’s Waldo?:-)

Ah, I just like to keep you guys guessing!!

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