Monday: Tigers vs. Twins

It’s windy, wet and gloomy in Detroit tonight, and the best hope is that the wet part lets up. It very well might, because these clouds look like they’re heading east in a hurry. With the ’84 reunion tonight and no desire on either team’s part to have a makeup doubleheader in such a key series, I’m guessing they wait a while to get this game in if they have to. They might not have to do that, though.

The only real change in the Tigers lineup is the flip of Gerald Laird and Brandon Inge to seventh and eighth in the order, respectively. Clete Thomas is 6-for-12 off Nick Blackburn, but he doesn’t get the start over Magglio, who’s pretty good off Blackburn himself at 4-for-10. Inge is 1-for-11.

TIGERS

  1. Curtis Granderson, CF
  2. Placido Polanco, 2B
  3. Magglio Ordonez, RF
  4. Miguel Cabrera, 1B
  5. Aubrey Huff, DH
  6. Carlos Guillen, LF
  7. Gerald Laird, C
  8. Brandon Inge, 3B
  9. Ramon Santiago, SS

P: Rick Porcello

TWINS

  1. Denard Span, CF
  2. Orlando Cabrera, SS
  3. Joe Mauer, SS
  4. Jason Kubel, RF
  5. Michael Cuddyer, 1B
  6. Delmon Young, LF
  7. Jose Morales, DH
  8. Matt Tolbert, 3B
  9. Nick Punto, 2B

P: Nick Blackburn

9 Comments

Huff in the lineup, Raburn on the bench.
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Since joining the team on August 18, Huff has hit .198 with 2 homers and 13 RBI, and an OBP of .267 in 105 plate appearances.
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In that same time span, Raburn has hit .358 with 7 homers and an OBP of .413 in 75 plate appearances.
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In case you’re wondering, Raburn is hitting .288 against RH pitchers and .283 against LH pitchers in a nearly equal number of plate appearances this season. Huff is hitting .205 against RH pitchers.
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So in the biggest game of the season, Leyland goes with Huff. This is what I’m talking about. It’s Neifi Perez all over again. Leyland kills us with this stuff. Put Raburn in left, DH Guillen, and let Mr. Huff watch the remainder of the season from the bench. Quit playing these L-R matchups!
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And the wind will be howling IN from rightfield.
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–Rich

And all the congregation said “Amen”.

An open letter to Mr. Porcello:

Dear Rick (may I call you Rick?)

Hi kid, how are you? Having a good day? Well, as the season winds down and we hit the last week, I guess you probably know that we’re in the midst of a pennant race. There’s a lot of hub bub about how important this pennant race is to the city of Detroit (although the Lions winning did take away some of that edge) and you’ve probably been asked a lot of questions about it the past couple of days.

You’ve done well for us this year kid. Pitched your normal 6 inning until the old man put down the cigarette in the tunnel and trotted out to the mound, with that “place the sphere gently in my hand” look in his eyes. We all knew you’d rather keep going but he and the “organization” got better plans for you and that right arm of yours kid.

But tonight, as the winds howl and the weather blows in off the lake, I guess we’re all looking for something special. Something that will etch you forever into our hearts (like Frank Tanana’s gem or Gibby circling the bases in the 8th inning torn sleeves and all). What we need tonight from you kid is a Motown Miracle. if you will.

So, when Mauer touches you for the bases loaded double, and Cuddyer rockets one into the teeth of that wind, don’t get down. The hitters will probably not support your effort tonight (surprise) but take a page from Hershiesier and Black Jack Morris and don’t give in. Simply look at the sign from Gerald and go after the next hitter. And, if your best isn’t good enough then don’t think that you’ve let the entire city of Detroit down. On the contrary. It’s been a pleasure this year watching you rock and deliver from the bump.

Good luck tonight kid.

Tiger Fan

You know Rich is frustrated when he starts using stats. Dont know what that says about me. :-) Couldn’t agree with you more about Raburn who has been on a roll pretty much since May.
I reckon JL would place Ramon 9th after pitchers if he had the chance.
I sure hope tonight gets played.

Any word on the expected start time?

Sometimes you just gotta roll with the numbers. :-)
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This wouldn’t be so difficult if Leyland was some kind of jerk, but he’s not. He’s a good guy that I like. He just drives me nuts with his methods.
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I can’t believe we have to wait now. That’s cruel. The radar doesn’t look good for most of the evening, either. If it turns into a doubleheader, at least it damages both team’s rotation plans equally.
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Oh well, anyone up for re-runs of “The Office”?
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–Rich

Oh well, double header tomorrow. They could make the season in one day.

My “Amen” was supposed to follow Tiger Fan’s letter to Rick. Well done Eric. This blog has some very creative writing. Anyway the Amen works just as well after your opening statement Rich, as I agree with you on all counts. I still think Ramon deserves better than 9th in the lineup but I’m just happy to see him in it as I think he may wind up surprising us.
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I’m almost relieved that the game was postponed. Way too wound up tonight….and stressed (did not like the feeling)…..this first game is huge. While the season would not be finished if we lost, it would almost be over with a win.
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It’s always tough to sweep a doubleheader and a split might favor the Tigers tomorrow. But our best chances still remain with our first two pitchers.

Great letter Eric, and so true – so much pressure for a young kid who has exceeded expectations and possibly has a huge future in front of him.

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