Friday: Tigers at Indians

Dusty Ryan starts for the fifth time in Detroit’s last six games, while Brandon Inge starts again at third (for update on Carlos Guillen, read previous post below). Ramon Santiago gets another start at short, though Edgar Renteria says he’s fine.

As for the manager, he says he will not be watching from the press box or luxury suites, as other managers have done. He’ll watch it from someplace where he isn’t visible. Lloyd McClendon will manage the team as expected.

TIGERS (71-80)

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

INDIANS (75-77)

  1. Grady Sizemore, CF
  2. David Dellucci, LF
  3. Shin-Soo Choo, RF
  4. Jhonny Peralta, SS
  5. Victor Martinez, C
  6. Travis Hafner, DH
  7. Michael Aubrey, 1B
  8. Andy Marte, 3B
  9. Asdrubal Cabrera, 2B

68 Comments

I disagree with playing Inge at 3rd. We know exactly what he can do there for us.
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I would think it would be more valuable to find out what Hessman can do. Either for us or as a showcase for someone else.
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I don’t like the idea that Thames isn’t playing either. Sheffield is being given every opportunity to hit 500. I hope he does it this year and soembody else starts getting desperate for a DH next year. It can happen. Not likely, but to think about him hanging around like an albatross next year is discouraging.
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We really need a 1st class shortstop. Santiago is OK but he is not going to do anything sensational as far as offensive contributions are concerned. Tough to come up with a Rollins, Ramirez, Guzman or Reyes but wouldn’t it be nice to have one of those kinds guys or a class act like Michael Young?
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My feeling is that they are committed to Guillen at 3rd and Inge behind the plate. If that is the case they abolutely need a premier shortstop.
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Today we face Carmona who has baffled us at times. If he gets his sinker working he can make us look pretty bad.
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G-Man needs a good outing. If he ends up walking guys we’ll lose, pretty simple.
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Granderson needs to turn things around. He’s had but 2 hits over his last 8 games. Historically, he has hit Carmona well and really well this year–so hopefully that helps to get him going. He is really pressing.
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At least we get to see Dusty play again.
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Been a along time since Matt Joyce cranked one.

Carmona served up 11 pitches (7 for strikes) and 10 of them were fastballs. Not a good start and Curtis looked hapless once again. He watched 2 belt high fastballs before flailing at the last one.

Today’s team at least has people playing in their right positions. Man, Sheffield will get lynched if he comes back next year after all the favours he has been given this year to get the job done on 500. Can be the only reason Thames isn’t at DH.
I am in two minds about Inge & Hessman. Given we are locked in on his payroll, he deserves a chance to see if his batting can improve and return to 3rd for next year. Is 3rd & SS that much different that Hessman has a go – difficult again as they have not given up on Renteria and keep trialling Santiago.

I know a good female chiro for Carlos – shame though she is in Oz. Geez, how many runs have been given up on 2 outs.

That’s the Sheffield I am very concerned about hitting in our lineup next year. Gary (DP) Sheffield, hitting in the middle of our lineup is one of themos demotivating factors we have had to deal with this year.

Do they keep stats on grounds into double plays? On top of him stiking out, Sheffield must hold the record.

I’ll be very impressed with G-Man if he can handle the Tribe today. They have the lineup stacked with LHB and he does have trouble with that.
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Guess we won’t be stacking many lineups with LHB anytome soon will we?

One things certain he isn’t going to get much of a break between innings. Their not even close with some of Carmona’s pitches.

Believe it or not, he is 2nd on the team (by far) to Ordonez. Maggs is 2nd in the AL with 25 and Sheffield is tied for 13 with 18 now.
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So our 3rd and 5th hitters have a combined 38 GIDP. Sort of costs you a lot of runs.

Top of 4 now. OK Curtis–this is beyond ridiculous. Let’s bear down and stroke the ball up the middle.

Thanks – it seems like all of them have been since July. Wow – Maggs needs to do something about those 1st pitches he keeps swinging on.

Maggs can’t help himself – thankfully Curt was on 2nd. How good is Cab – what an effortless swing.

That was nice.
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I have pulled for Hessman for a couple of years now. Obviously the guy has a ton of power but what captured my interest was his skill at 3rd. I’m just amazed the big man has not found a home in the majors with this bat and glove.

G-Man needs to pour it on right now. Getting to the bottom of the lineup and if he gives up any here it could be irreversible, the way Carmona is pitching.

G-Man has pitched really well too. I have noticed that he seems to have trouble in the 6th so fingers crossed.

Teo pitchers outside middle of plate and both gone. No room for error with these guys.

Gman was great, but doubt he will come out/finish 7. Who to now??

Be great to get some runs now. G-Man does give up too many HRs–especially to LHB.
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I would not be surprised to see them bring in Fossum next inning-especially if Martinez gets on.

Cabs in batting practise – their saying Carmona hadn’t been homered by a RH batter this year!!

Is Sheff a goose or what??

Whew!
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Aubrey should have tagged Sheffield out!.
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You just knew there was going to be trouble. I mean- Sheffield took that bat with him all the way to 1st base. I’ve never seen that before. That was a signal to be sure.

Question is—Is G-Man gonna recirocate?

Carmona and Sheff better stick to baseball – definiteley won’t make it in boxing.

Sheff on base! And not from a walk! Yes!!!

Oh, hit by pitch…

Oops, may bad–gameday is too slow! Wish I could see the confrontation.

I bet Gman doesn’t – Sheff wa stupid the whole time – the hit was in but not badly or high. Throw to 1st was no where near him.

Oh well – we find new ways for double plays. Hard to keep those Rays down. 9 up after last nights heart break.

I mean reciprocate!
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Inge is showing why we can’t have another weak hitter in the lineup next year. If we must-we can afford him at the hot corner but we have to have an offensive capable SS that can field his position. Oh yeah, and a catcher too.

Gman looks out of sorts starting 7. Don’t keep him in long.

Gman was fantastic – started the 7th wobbly after the break and then finished strong. Seay is warming up.

Lucky break for Santiago – hopefully we can make it pay.

Would JL have kept Gman into the 8th?

They have not looked real good against this Mujica guy.
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McLendon is doing the right thing here. G-Man pitched fantastic and he has to be out of gas. You don’t want him to lose the chance for the W and his arm has been a concern so don’t push it.

Gman was finishing well – was not happy to go. Unbelievable – 2 out, can’t throw a strike to walk, then perfect pitch for batting practise.

I sure wish I didn’t make that last post!
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Can you believe it? A flare double with 2 out in the 8th starts this and we discover, yet again, another guy you can’t count on in the late innings to hold a lead. We must lead the league in blown saves.
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That’s an absolute travesty and a shame for G-Man.
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You could tell Fossum had no composure after walking the pinch-hitter.

At least you can still laugh!! How does Gman feel right now?? Excluding Jones, we are 14 of 36 in saves. Ugggghhh!!!

I am so sick of the starting pitcher doing good, & then gets pulled & the game is blown. Armando must be pretty ticked off, as he should be. He could have gotten a win. The whole team should be upset. I know I am! Why not leave Armando in? Awww, the pitch count? I do not understand that type of management at all.

The guys at bats in the 9th showing the frustration.

This is dumb—-You are giving them an out by leaving Joyce in. Where is Marcus Thames?

I am sure they haven’t played Thames since his last homer. He must have given JL some of his own medicine.

Pull Dolsi now!!!

Nice to see a perfect JL imitation, pull the pitcher when he should have been left in. G-Man got robbed.
Love our Blow-Pen…………………….not.
Go Tigers, take this one, please.

I think this left and right pitching is overplayed. Seay looked good – bit over the middle but at least with movement. What will Glover do?

It’s Glovers turn to become the “guy”.

What can you say???

The whole season played out in one game – boy this has been repetitive.

Disgusting, heart-breaking, unbelievable – there are many words to describe the Tigers right now.

My wife was watching the ESPN Bottom Line while we were catching the Rays/Twinkies game-here’s the conversation:

“Well, we’re winning.”

“What’s the score?”

“2-1″

“One run will never hold up with our bullpen.”

“Jeff, you have to have faith.”

The Tigers have been forsaken by the baseball gods.

This stinks, the Indians are eating this up. I can’t help but believe that the Sheff incident made this win all the sweeter for them.
On the bright side, how great is Cabrera? So glad we have this kid to watch for years to come.

Maybe it has to get uglier before things turn. JL would have pulled Gman after 6th when he had thrown 92. Gman is our only pitcher with an ERA under 4. Now 14 from 37 saves since Jones.

Just and FYI Thames is not in because he had a death in the family. They said it real quick in the pregame I think.
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And while tonights loss is disgusting and heartbreaking it for me is not unbelievable. It is as expected. It seems to me that none of these pitchers are consistent and clearly don’t want to work. The problem is you don’t even know who you can trust. They will be pretty darn good to excellent for 3 games and then they will blow it big like Fossum did tonight. And I have said the same thing about Glover and Farnsworth at times. Especially in the last month or so. Unreliable, Disgusting and heartbreaking but to me not unbelievable. Not anymore anyway.

Yes, it was Glover’s time!
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There is not a reliable guy in that bullpen. Actually the only guy they can halfway count on is Lopez. But he seems to only pitch in games with 5+ run spreads, (and usueally behind).
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This is onother of those “microcosm” games. Good starting pitching, timely hitting by the big bopper, emotions running wild, division rivals, get ahead (actually somewhat comfortabley ahead), and then the horrific bullpen comes into play to lose it.
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Kind of looks like the season doesn’t it?
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Pretty bad.
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I don’t much understand bringing Glover in–I know the alternatives were Farnsworth and Rodney, but I still don’t understand Glover. They are desperately trying to find somebody who can rise like Phoenix out of the ashes of the bullpen.
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We’ve got this horrible bullpen where they have been trying to find solutions and they don’t call up the International League leader in saves (all star and Olympian too), Blaine Neal. Ian Oslund ( have they been looking for a lefty?) left to rot as well.
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Is this a bit of an oversight?
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Dolsi does not have late inning ability either. At least not yet. He can’t hold runners on and walks more than he strikes out. Gives up a lot of hits too.
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Dave–I agree. I thought we were seeing Mac indulge in over-managing when he took Seay out.
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Seay can be as bad as anybody else but if he blows away the first hitter his confidence is sky high and he can work with the momentum. Mac stifled that momentum with a pitching change just to go with the percentages. Actually the percentages have been telling us for quite some time now, that you may as well stick with the guy that got you the last out.
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It just keeps getting worse.

I hate to think it but it is hard not to agree with Rich saying this is likely to be a 2-3 year turnaround.
Our bullpen sure makes who plays 3rd, SS and catch immaterial. We need to buy on the cheap as many youngish, no name pitchers as we can afford that have the right attitude. Hopefully some of them can than step up next year.
Since Jones left the bullpen, everyone’s stats have gone down the toilet. If Jones or Rogers are fit and interested, having either back in the bullpen on a small contract would be good for leadership/mentoring.

Tigers Blow-pen throws the game away! What a shame for Armando. He pitched a darn good game, nothing to show for it, but lowering his era.
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Bet McClendon is thinking “why me?”.. first game to start off this series with the Tribe, and a melee breaks out. Maybe Sheff was trying to fire up the team.. but wonder if this is his out for next year? Will his fine, and suspension take place the rest of this year, and will it cost him his 500 HRs?
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I would much rather see Maggs, Guillen, G-man, Garcia, Polanco stay in Detroit, and Sheff go on a plane and not come back.
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What was Polanco’s act in the fight tonight, that cost him ejection?
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Hard to think , just how bad… ugly, the last three innings most of these games are becoming.

Just heard Sheff’s post game comments, he is a piece of work. What a bitter man. Good luck chasing that 500 mark, dude.

Note to Mac: forget how JL does it, try using some common sense tomorrow.

Got home in time to see the bottom of the 9th, one on and one out. Glover throws two pitches, one at a time I think, and bingo, microcosm of 2008. Anyone else here feelin’ like Wiley Cyote? I can’t remember when I’ve had this much fun.

Wiley “Coyote” that is.

If I’m managing, I leave Galarraga and his 110 pitches in the game to get the final out of the 8th inning. I think he could have gotten ONE out. I know the season situation is hopeless and he’s supposed to be tired, but I just think you’ve got to let the kid finish off the inning and see if he can’t (finally) get a win. At least wait till the 9th to bring in whoever it is they bring in these days. As soon as Lloyd started in to managing there in the 8th, we were toast. Or do these guys still think that a fresh arm from our pen is better than a fatigued starter? You have to remember, when you make that signal to the bullpen, you don’t know what you’re going to get. It’s always a roll of the dice and you NEVER pull a starter who is dominating.
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I heard Sheff’s postgame comments too. Maybe it depends on what kind of background one comes from, because I understood everything he said. You have to keep in mind that there is a history here with Carmona drilling Sheffield. Gary played it cool the first couple of times, just like he said. Enough was enough tonight. In the end, I’m sure he’ll take a big hit on all this, especially from Tiger fans. And no, I don’t think he was trying to fire up the team or get an “out” or what have you. Like I said, enough was enough.
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I think the umpires got it wrong with Polanco and I’m sure he won’t be suspended once they review the tape. With 60 guys in a scrum, it’s hard to tell who’s doing what in real time. IMO, Carmona receives the bigger suspension because he was throwing punches. It does seem kind of stupid for a pitcher to keep driving his pitching hand into a man’s hard skull. :-)
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While still enjoying the games, it will indeed be good to get this season behind us.
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–Rich

This game sums up our management – quick to pull achievers and slow to pull relievers starting poorly.
McLendon no doubt kept Gman in longer than JL would have. He had thrown only 18 pitches to 6 bats in the 7th & 8th with only a lucky fly double with 2 outs. He should have gone out to him and asked him if he wanted to go one more bat for the last out rather than go to Glover. Gman was not impressed. Then sticking with Glover after he 4 pitch walked to bring the tying run to the plate is inexcusable. His one and only thrown strike looked like Tball. Then pulling Seay after he had struck out one in the 9th is again inexcusable with the fragility of the bullpen.
Our bullpen has lacked confidence all year and this type of management – treating players like chess pieces rather than feeling the games momentum compounds the problem and is killing them.

Sorry – meant Fossum 4 ball walk in the 8th. Easy to lose track when you use 4 relievers that get only two outs!!

Miggy took over AL hr lead!

I kinda agree with Rich and the Sheffield scrum. I really don’t think that he was terribly out of line. There was a history with Sheff being hit by Carmona and I think that it just boiled up over time. It is too bad that it had to happen, but I don’t really blame him too much.
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Regarding Polanco, that was a bad decision to pull him out. He as far as the tape I saw didn’t do a thing. Now Astrubal Cabrera did. My guess is that they were just trying to get two guys from each team. But if he gets suspended I will be shocked Polanco that it. Sheffield will, Carmona will, Martinez should and Astrubal Cabrera should in my opinion.
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I guess Indian players don’t care if they get hit, but lets face it all they do is jump into balls. They get hit more than any team on the planet. That is their MO.

I just checked Cleveland has been hit by pitch 93 times this year the next closest are the Yankees at 73. Then there are several that run in the 60 range. Cleveland batters I think wait for a ball to jump in from of. And I am serious. I know that when we play them there are going to be several hit batters and last night there were two. And by the way the one guy was certinaly not hit, Hafner was but certianly not the other on but I cannot remember his name.

Where was Farnsworth in the fracas last night? We all know he likes to mix it up when he gets a chance.

I don’t think that our pen rushed the field. I didn’t see anyone from our pen out there. I could be wrong though, I said that same thing about Farnsworth. Personally I just dont think that they care.

The one positive to this season is the trade for Cabby. He will be fun to watch in the years ahead. It was a good move to bat Maggs 3rd and Cabby 4th. I know I am in the minority here but I like Sheffield. Yes he is outspoken but his track record at the plate is Way better than this year. I say let him start in left field next year and if he falters then it was his job to lose. Hey Rich, we should be co-managers of the Tigers next year. Denny McClain would have asked the manager “what are you doing out here. You think you have somebody better than me in the bullpen?” I had to turn off the tv after the Choo home run. Oh well, more reality tv tonight. Go Tigers! –Dave

I wonder if all fans can sense when their team is going to lose for sure. This year’s squad plays so eerily predictable that I know that every Tiger fan could sense a loss. You sense it when the Indian announcers are commenting about pitching around Francisco to get to Choo, if that was the case. Even if not, I already had 3runs on the board. You see it in our relievers eyes. There’s no killer instinct in any of them, save for Zumaya, and he’s not pitching now. Two things that I take from last nights game. First, how stupidly wrong I was in my analysis of the Cabrera trade. In hindsight a ten for 1 trade would probably have been good. What a ton of pure God given talent to watch! And he’s a Tiger for the next seven years. That trade alone gives Dave D some breathing room from my vantage point. Secondly, the most glaring stat is the 26th. blown save in 57 chances. Had we converted only 50% of those, we would be fighting for the Central championship, and that’s with all the other baggage we’ve dealt with this year. So as we bid farewell to a unique but not enjoyable year, I already have begun to get charged about 2009, because even with all of our problems, on April 6, of next year, we all start out even. God willing, that will be my 50th. year as a Tiger fan, and I truly do love this ball club. Thanks to Todd Jones and Kenny Rogers for that nearly perfect ride in 2006.

Greg

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