Sunday: Tigers vs. Rays

Not that it was a surprise, but Gerald Laird will catch Justin Verlander in his first start since their well-publicized exchange in the visiting dugout at Angel Stadium last Monday. Though the Rays start a right-hander in Jeff Niemann, the preference holds that manager Jim Leyland wants Laird to catch Verlander because of the results, Monday’s sixth inning notwithstanding.


  1. Granderson, CF
  2. Polanco, 2B
  3. Guillen, LF
  4. Cabrera, 1B
  5. Huff, DH
  6. Inge, 3B
  7. Thomas, RF
  8. Laird, C
  9. Santiago, SS

SP: Justin Verlander


  1. Jason Bartlett, SS
  2. Carl Crawford, LF
  3. Ben Zobrist, RF
  4. Carlos Pena, 1B
  5. Pat Burrell, DH
  6. Evan Longoria, 3B
  7. Gregg Zaun, C
  8. Akinori Iwamura, 2B
  9. B.J. Upton, CF

P: Jeff Niemann


well in looking at the stats to me it is confounding this lineup.
Again righties hit Neiman better nearly a full point better than lefties. So why do we have 5 lefties in???? And not only do we have 5 lefties two of our best (Hottest hitter this month) are not in the lineup. Is there some secret numbers that Leyland has that nobody else does or does he even look at them??? I understand putting Aubry in there he has hit Neimann real well. But Clete?? Why isn’t Ordonez in there, why isn’t Raburn? Doesn’t it make sense?

Impressive at bats by the Tigers in the first inning. Way to work it, could you have made it any easier on him??

2nd inning – while Cabrera was robbed – my god the guy has only thrown 19 pitches. Another impressive inning of plate appearances.

terrific Justin your team finally gets you one stinking run and you immediately give it up. Really Iwamura 1st homer of the season. Nice work.

4th inning you had Neimann on the ropes he threw 9 more pitches. Two week ground balls and a line out to right. Neimann must be shaking in his shoes.

well Justin has been ahead of all of these hitters, yet they foul off a million pitches then he has walked them or they have singled. At this rate he isn’t going to make it very far in this game. 86 pitches and not even through the 5th yet.

Hey, sklant, you must feel like you are the only one watching the game. Or maybe no one else knows what to say when they would just have to keep repeating themselves from so many games before. Verlander has not looked as sharp as he can be. His pitch count is 98 after 6 innings. He is out for the 7th inning but there is a hit already. Meanwhile, the Tigers 2-6 hitters in these 3 games with Tampa are now 2 for 47. And those 2 are sitting on the bench in Ordonez. Sure, his replacement Thomas has 2 hits today but he is batting 7th. With the Tampa pitcher at only 67 pitches, he is headed for a complete game. ‘Nuff said for now.

Looks like they are going to have any offense in this game either. The guy has only thrown aobut 67 pitches through 6 innings. An offensive onslaught of 3 singles. Ozzie Guillen talked about embarressment this is right up there.

Yesterday we gave the Rays singles, errors, walks and a passed ball and mustered only singles against “CY” Price. Today, JV is not fooling them and has thrown 110+ pitches and gives up singles, walks and homers against “CY” Niemann. This Tigers team is the worst offensive team in many years!


Batters 2-6 now have 3 hits in 51 at-bats with Huff’s double. The Tampa pitchers sure have the “book” on Tiger hitters.

Why would any pitcher want to play for this Tigers team – they practically have to throw a shutout every game in order to win. These pitcher have to be terribly frustrated with their teammates. I know I am. Again I will say it even though lefties have all of our hits, righties have hit him much better.

Finally a big hit from a 2-6 hitter. Thank you Polanco. Tigers 4-3. 3 outs to go. Rodney?

Clete Thomas almost singlehandedly knocks the Tampa pitcher off the mound with 3 hits. Now can the Tigers hit a relief pitcher?

Nice Polly

Time to extend Rodney

Was that cool or what?

I am stunned. Not by the fact that this site has my comments in the wrong order but that the Tigers actually came back in this game with a big hit from a #2-6 hitter. Polanco. That was his first against the Rays in this series. Meanwhile, Cabrera and Guillen have been hitless. That means their middle of the line-up hitters are now 4 for 53 vs Tampa pitchers. 2 hits for Magglio, a double for Huff, and Placido’s game winning HR. Even if it is the hitters faults, they definitely need a new hitting coach with a different approach. Monday it is Washburn and hopefully a reawakened middle of the hitting order.

Well I would of bet the farm that they wouldn’t pull this one out today. Wouldn’t be the first time I was wrong this year. Another GUTSY outing by JV, not his best stuff, but managed to keep it close enough. I was shocked when he went back out there for the 8th and I actually said it was a waste of his arm, because these fools weren’t doing anything at the plate today.
What an unlikely hero today.
Going to the game on Monday. Hopefully Washburn is good and our hitters are better. Our hitters certianly don’t like pitchers they haven’t seen before and since we have seen Shields I am holding out hope..
Go Tigers

Man, the Rays have some good young pitchers. I wish we didn’t have to play them four more times.
I thought at the time that Verlander getting out of that 5th inning jam was huge, although it didn’t look like it would matter for the longest time. It was one of those games that’s not much fun to watch, then suddenly you win it. As Polly’s fly dropped over the fence, every arm in the Tigers dugout went up, along with everyone in the stadium, and all over selected locations in the USA and Canada. And Mario was LOUD. He drowned out the sound of my feet hitting the floor as I came back down. 🙂
Looked like JL got caught with his pants down, not having Rodney ready to start the 9th. Oh ye of little faith, JL. 🙂
Well again, the key word to describe this year’s Tigers remains “scrappy.”
I’m watching Ranger-Twins now. Does anyone else think it would be cool to see the Rangers make the playoffs?

I would love to see the Rangers make the playoffs especially if it means that the Red Soxs won’t make it in. GO TEXAS.

Whatdya know? The Twins pulled out 3 in the bottom of the 8th to win 5-3. I definitely have more concerns about them than the Sox at this point. The CWS seem to be imploding.


Yes, Twins win 5-3. The Rangers had Nathan in big trouble in the 9th just like Friday but he got out of it. I am still thinking that if the Tigers crawl to 86-76 by going 17-16 down the stretch, the Twins will have to go 22-10 to pass the Tigers and the WSox will now have to go 23-8. Anything is still possible but those seem like very steep hills to climb assuming the Tigers will only play .500 ball. Now the Twins host the Sox for 3 games. If the Sox want to stay in the race they are going to have to overcome their poor record in Minnesota.

Yeah, I watched the Rangers suffer a classic case of being “domed.” Then to have the bases loaded with none out in the 9th and score no runs at all. One thing the Tigers, White Sox, and Twins all have in common is experience in a pennant race. The Texas players have little to none. That becomes important in September.
Of course, everyone says the Central will come down to the last two weeks but, if you think about it, that statement carries a big DUH factor. Unless a club has a 14-game lead, it will always come down to the last two weeks. The bigger your lead, however, the more wiggle room and survive-ability you have during that final 2-week stretch.

Have to hand it to the 2009 Tigers. For all their deficiencies, they seem to know how to claw out a win and are now 41-27 in games of 2 or less runs. Will be huge if we can maintain our current lead by next Sunday completing our east coast games at the Rays.
With our .257 team hitting avg good for 12 of 14; 4.13 pitching 2 of 14 and .983 fielding 9 of 14 no clues for showing who is holding up the 2009 Tigers.
With the Tigs winning more than their fair share of close ones and Rodney going 29 of 30 saves, I was surprised to see our overall team save stat of 32 of 51 (62.7%) hardly improving on last years 34 of 62 (54.8%) which was the 2nd worst in MLB after the Nats. Removing Zooms 1 for 7 brings it back to a respectable 31 of 44 (70.5%) which competes with the Yankees 80%; Chisox 66.7%; Rangers 77.1%; Twinkies 74.5% and Angels 73.6%.
Thankfully shutting down Joba after 3 IP and 35 pitches today didn’t help out Chisox. NY is reducing his workload for the rest of the season, worried about his 133 IP thus far, up from his 100 IP in 2008.
Rick is 3 years younger and has 128 IP thus far, already higher than his 2008 count of 125 IP at Lakeland which also no doubt had a considerably lower P/IP count.
I hope (but doubt) the run home doesn’t cause us to burn him like his season high 104 count on Friday.
Bemused to see Renteria hit a 2 out grand slam in the bottom of the 7th today to turn around a 2-5 ballgame against their rival Rockies for the wild card.

Just finished watching the game. Recorded it on the DVR before I left for work. Wow! That HR by Polly just made it. I looked at it again and again and that guy’s glove was just inches away from catching that ball. Terrific afternoon for the fans. Tomorrow, I’ll be watching. Sure hope we can pull another out. The Twins are on our tail and they can be relentless with Gardenhire as manager.

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