Thursday: Tigers vs. Ogando, er, Rangers

The Rangers have beaten the Tigers twice in eight tries so far this season. Both times, Alexi Ogando was the starter and winning pitcher. Today, after a pair of one-run victories, Ogando stands between the Tigers and a series sweep.

As Jim Leyland forewarned, Ryan Raburn has a second straight start, and Andy Dirks is in center field. But instead of Raburn at designated hitter, he’s in right field. That gives Miguel Cabrera a day out of the field at DH, and earns Don Kelly his first start at first base this season. If you’re counting, that’s now five different spots where Kelly has started this season.

Add in Ramon Santiago at short for Jhonny Peralta, and the Tigers have four switch-hitters, three left-handed batters and two right-handed hitters in their lineup.


  1. Andy Dirks, CF
  2. Don Kelly, 1B
  3. Brennan Boesch, LF
  4. Miguel Cabrera, DH
  5. Victor Martinez, C
  6. Carlos Guillen, 2B
  7. Wilson Betemit, 3B
  8. Ryan Raburn, RF
  9. Ramon Santiago, SS

P: Brad Penny (15th day game start this year)


  1. Ian Kinsler, 2B
  2. Elvis Andrus, SS
  3. Josh Hamilton, LF
  4. Michael Young, DH
  5. Nelson Cruz, RF
  6. Mike Napoli, C
  7. Mitch Moreland, 1B
  8. Andres Blanco, 3B
  9. Endy Chavez, CF

P: Alexi Ogando


I’d like to mention that I thought Leyland’s managing was on POINT last night! Some examples: Raburn batting instead of Guillen (in Guillen’s spot in the lineup….and he batted LIKE guillen), pulling Fister when he did I thought was smart, putting Coke in to get the Lefty then pulling Coke after he gave up a hit to that LEFTY, pinch running for maggs with kelly even tho nothing came of it, and substituting santiago at the end of the game for raburn.

With that said —— Opponents are hitting .337 against Brad Penny in his past four starts. He’s 2-2 with a 6.94 ERA in that span. So I hope the boys are bringing the bats today. At least we have Ryan Raburn in there to do some dirt😉

although, wtf is JL doin with betemit batting in front of raburn? I mean – the logic worked last night jim..

Leyland is getting his guys playing time. And he is also getting some of these guys in just when it looks like the guys they are replacing might be starting to flail a little bit. Santiago in for Peralta is a good example of giving Ramon some PT just when Jhonny is starting to have some peculiar at bats. Same with Dirks for Jackson
I am a bit surprised that Raburn is in against Ogando though.
Very surprised Avila is getting the day off today and not yesterday—though in hindsight that did work out yesterday.
JL is matching up sparring partners VMart and Penny. Interesting.
I don’t think this is the best lineup, obviously- certainly not a September lineup.
As to Betemit. This guy is gonna have to hit consistently to justify him in the lineup. That error came at a crucial time yesterday but to his credit he handled quite a lot of action there yesterday and everything else was good.
Austin really needs a kick in the ass. Perhaps benching him more will help but I honestly felt that he would have benefitted from being sent down for a few weeks to work with Bull Durham. McLendon’s Mission One is being treated as Mission Impossible. All they need to do is put an electronic dog collar on Austin and every time he takes a pitch down the middle Lloyd can zap him from the dugout.

JL’s managing was better last night. Except for his obstinancy regarding bunting with Peralta and Ordonez.
Leyland figures these guys can’t bunt, worse he figures their reputation absolves them of having to even try.
To have a better chance of winning this is something you simply need to do. Both of those guys are character guys. If you ask them to literally sacrifice themselves for the overall good of the team I’m sure they would. Neither one of them is so hot right now that the chances of scoring are better by not bunting. In Ordonez’s case, he is more likely to hit into a DP than he is to hit a double in the gap.
That is one area that I watch very closely to see how serious JL thinks our chances oare of winning this division. When he starts to do this it can only improve the team.
I don’t mean bunting with just a guy on 1st or just a guy on 2nd—I mean 1st & 2nd and nobody down.

yea idk about penny and victor playing together again……in fact, idk about penny the past several games. Jackson is under the .250 mark these days…..but for your sake dan – i know he can bunt😉 Idk if Maggs and Jhonny can – I have a feeling they really suck at it……have either of them ever played in the NL before? Betemit does need to hit if he’s going to suck at defense….or we’ll just pull up brandon from toledo (if one of our IFs gets hurt lets say) and spell them. Ordonez does hit into a lot of double plays when he is batting poorly.

I was in a vocal section last night, meaning some smart guys who knew their stuff. We were all surprised (pleasantly) when JL pulled Coke after the lefty hitter. It was a good baseball move and one we don’t always see. As far as who’s in the lineup, that’s pretty much dictated by the results. If Raburn had fanned four times, folks would be all over that. I like the use of Dirks to spell Jackson. There are people who think Austin could be a little more base-balls to the walls, so you’re not alone there, Dan.
We’ve hit six homers in three games and won all three. We have to do that to have a chance, simple as that. Even solo shots, whatever.
Penny had been scheduled to pitch last NIGHT, but got pushed back by Fister into another daytime start. Incredible. I can sympathize with Brad as I’m not a morning person either. I wouldn’t want to be heating up in the bullpen at noon, no sir.
May see a little more that “small ball” today with this lineup, but a couple of timely homers would help immensely.

There used to be a time when you went out for batting practice you INCLUDED bunting in your round. Pre DH days to be sure. But I can tell you I’d be pretty impressed with a manager that insisted on this. At least it would mean that he is serious about reaching the ultimate goal which is to play real baseball in October. (No DH) and wants his pitchers to be be able to provide a productive at bat and his hitters to be able to sacrifice.
Most pitchers would relish the idea of having even 5 minutes in the batting cage.

Gonna be late for dinner today with Penny pitching.
Penny followed up by Benoit and Valverde will not exactly have the infield on their toes.

JL does need to be quick with those guys in the pen that he previously treated as though they are all-stars when they are in fact pretty ordinary. Coke can be OK but he can get in trouble in a hurry if you aren’t ready to replace him. It was a good move to take him out. He didn’t do his job.

Ya know I watch a lot of baseball and the thing I notice.most about this team is that our infielders don’t dive for anything, their jerseys never get dirty.
Penny sure got sqeezed in this Napoli ab???

Geez Carlos!

Our defense really is poor. When you factor in the range and some of the god awful plays made in heavy action, it really is poor.Many times things don’t show up as errors, like yesterday when Peralta had time to complete a DP and threw it away.
Guillen has been OK at 2nd but his tendency to hot dog is a concern.
Drats, we had a triple play there and blew it.

Whoa—is Betemit a reincarnation of Brandon?

Maybe Dan, but that pitch wasn’t a strike.

I know I am not supposed to complain about he strike zone but is it a little fishy to anybody else?

For intance that pitch to Andrus versus what Betemit was struck out on. Elvis’s was actually a strike and Betemits was 2 inches off the plate. Just look Dan ad let me know what ya think.

It’s not a good one today. (Strike Zone)

Atleast I know I am not crazy

The 4th inning here is going to be a big one for Penny. Young is due and he is going to face a couple of guys who can go yard, and have been going yard.
Fingers crossed.

I think Martinez got charged with the rror on that scoring play. Truth is a better throw from Kelly and he would have been out.
Well Young starts things off the way I feared. I hope the rest of my fear is not materialized.

Here we go. I kinda wish Penny HAD caught that wih his bare hand.

Serioulsy not one of those jerks could catch that ball?? Nice

I presume we have someone (like Below) warming up by now.

Penny does this a lot—giving up a 3 spot around the 4th inning. To his credit he has often recovered but he does seem to give up runs in bunches at some point the 2nd time through the lineup.

Dollars to doughnuts that Penny is gonna give SOMEBODY grief in the dugout now.

Right Rod Penny isn’t getting that call but Orgando is plus more? Sorry for complaining but it doesn’t seem like I am the only ones thinking it if even Rod is suggesting it today?

That actually came up in the press box early in the game, at least the part about Penny not getting pitches on the corner. Some looked online like they were there.

All I can say is the club is paying him to pitch better than he has. I don’t much like the guy and have no confidence in him whatsoever.

Meanwhile our at bats all seem to include swinging at balls up arond the eyes.
If they don’t get to Ogando next inning we ain’t gonna climb back into this one.

Ya I am afraid you are right Dan. I didn’t expect much to begin with today, but I would of hoped for a little more from our hitters

Oganda is 3 times the pitcher that Penny is and deserves the close calls.
In the games that Penny has started this year and the Tigers have gone on to win, the Tigers have averaged 6 runs scored.
Obviously they need to.

boy with 3 pitch-to-contact starters we better get our infield playing better.
No Ks from Fister or Penny yesterday and today.

I don’t agree to me a strike is a strike, I don’t believe in certain players getting certain calls that others don’t no matter what the sport. A strike is a strike is a strike no matter who throws it.

Well they showed up finally, but its most likely too darn late!

well Jhonny has come through more often than not, but I fee like he is going through a minny slump as of late?

Looked on the replay like Lamont was trying to hold Cabby at 3rd and he ignored him and scored easily. Lamont has tried to hold or send a guy in error multiple times this year. Can’t believe they tolerate his lack of judgement at such a crucial coaching position.

Lamont was probably right to hold him up given the situation. Cab pretty much does what he wants.

9 singles and didn’t walk once today. Recipe for losing all day if you can’t string them together in the right order. Rich is correct this team has a hard time winning without the long call. Off to KC hopefully we can win a few there. KC has bee scoring a few runs lately and pitching a little better. Butler has been on fire, 6 homers in the last nine games.

That one was crystal clear from the 4th inning on.
Good to see Q back in action. Just hope they are able to keep him healthy.

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