May 29th, 2011

Nightcap on FSN Detroit locally

Ok, here’s the deal on the TV situation for the second game of the doubleheader: It’s on FSN Detroit in Michigan and NW Ohio, and NESN in Boston. It’s also on MLB.TV everywhere else. So one way or another, it should now be available just like any other game. That came as a result of talks with ESPN to waive their exclusivity clause for this one.

Sunday night: Tigers vs. Red Sox

As mentioned earlier today, the infield looks a lot different for Game 2. No last-minute changes in addition to that, though.

Jose Valverde said he’s available for Game 2 after taking the loss in the opener. Leyland said Benoit and Purcey should be available as well. Of course, he’d probably prefer Verlander to eat up more innings than that. We’ll see.

As for the weather, well, it looks like nasty weather coming. Guessing they’ll wait for the storm to pass rather than risk losing Verlander and Beckett after an inning or two, but that might depend on how quickly this system goes through.

TIGERS

  1. Austin Jackson, CF
  2. Andy Dirks, LF
  3. Brennan Boesch, RF
  4. Miguel Cabrera, 1B
  5. Victor Martinez, DH
  6. Don Kelly, 3B
  7. Alex Avila, C
  8. Ramon Santiago, SS
  9. Danny Worth, 2B

P: Justin Verlander

RED SOX

  1. Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
  2. Dustin Pedroia, 2B
  3. Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
  4. Kevin Youkilis, 3B
  5. David Ortiz, DH
  6. Carl Crawford, LF
  7. Drew Sutton, SS
  8. J.D. Drew, RF
  9. Jason Varitek, C

P: Josh Beckett

Sunday afternoon: Tigers vs. Red Sox

The good news here at Comerica Park is that the sun is out and the temperature feels like summer has arrived. The bad news, of course, is the chance of rain later today, but it sounds like they have a good chance to get in the game. Depending on the forecast, the rain could arrive either late in the day game or between games.

As far as I’m concerned, it can pour between games if that’s what happens. Just get in the games.

I was thinking this yesterday, but Rod Allen made the point those morning: If the Tigers have any chance of slowing down this Red Sox offense, Andy Oliver might be able to do it. Boston’s numbers against right-handed pitchers compared to lefties this season aren’t as different as you might imagine after watching the first two games of this series, not to mention their two games at Fenway last week. But twice, the Tigers have had a lot more success with their lefty long relievers against Boston than their right-handed starters.

Oliver is a different style pitcher than Charlie Furbush or Adam Wilk, or Phil Coke for that matter, more of a power pitcher. But if he can get his slider working, he could present a similar challenge. Oliver had been doing that with Toledo, and he’d been getting some quicker ground-ball outs as a result. But doing that against Triple-A hitters is a lot different than doing that against these guys.

Look for an infield rotation in Game 2. While Jhonny Peralta and Ryan Raburn are the double-play combination for the day game, Jim Leyland said that Ramon Santiago and Danny Worth will get the nightcap. Don Kelly is expected to start at third base in Brandon Inge’s place. Victor Martinez and Alex Avila are going to alternate games behind the plate, as one would expect.

TIGERS

  1. Austin Jackson, CF
  2. Andy Dirks, LF
  3. Brennan Boesch, DH
  4. Miguel Cabrera, 1B
  5. Victor Martinez, C
  6. Jhonny Peralta, SS
  7. Don Kelly, RF
  8. Ryan Raburn, 2B
  9. Brandon Inge, 3B

P: Andy Oliver

RED SOX

  1. Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
  2. Dustin Pedroia, 2B
  3. Adrian Gonzalez, 1B
  4. Kevin Youkilis, DH
  5. Jed Lowrie, SS
  6. Carl Crawford, LF
  7. Drew Sutton, 3B
  8. Mike Cameron, RF
  9. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C

P: Clay Buchholz

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