No on Verlander, very much yes on Scherzer

Justin Verlander threw his side session in the visiting bullpen at Yankee Stadium earlier today, well before batting practice. If you were still hoping, after all that Jim Leyland has said the last couple days about not using him in Game 5, that he would be available in relief tonight, that’s definitive news that he won’t.  If he was going to pitch in relief, the Tigers would have held him back from his side session and saved those throws. The fact that he threw today means the Tigers want him ready for Game 1 of the ALCS, if they get there.

Max Scherzer is another story. Leyland told reporters after his press conference that Scherzer told pitching coach Jeff Jones he felt he could throw 100 pitches tonight. Doesn’t mean he will, obviously, but it means he has a fresh arm if they need it.

“If we need to go long, I’m going to go to Scherzer,” Leyland said. “If we get to the late innings, I’m going to [Joaquin] Benoit and [Jose] Valverde. It’s that simple. If I need Coke to get one lefty out in a big situation, I would probably go to him. Other than that, you would probably not see any other pitchers tonight. If you do, we got beat.”

In fact, if Leyland has to go to his bullpen in the middle innings, he might turn to Scherzer.

If the Tigers use any relievers besides those four, and it isn’t extra innings, it’s not a good sign.

64 Comments

I hope Scherzer does not have to be used. In fact I’d like to see a complete game by Fister!
I think the key will be to handle Teixeira today. He’s due to brak out.

I’m thinking the same thing about Tex. And A-Rod is lurking too. One big difference tonight is the ballpark. There were two flyouts to Kelly in game 3 that would have been out of Yankee Stadium. One was Granderson, can’t remember the other. I just remember leaning out from my spot among the statues with the ball in flight and reporting back to people behind me “He’s got it.” Needless to say, they appreciated hearing that.
Kind of cool to have JL be so forthcoming with his plans. For some reason, NY has had trouble hitting Scherzer.

I am soooooooooo nervous guys, I am on the ledge!

Why worry? Each of us is wearing an unlicensed nuclear accelerator on his back.

Tex is below avg for AL 1b vs RHP. Kills lefties, so not a guy you’d want Coke to face. It’s going to be interesting to see how much leeway each manager gives their starting pitcher. That might be the most decisive factor in this game.

If Mister Fister can come close to pitching the way he has most of the time with the Tigers, it will be up to the Tigers’ offense to come through against Nova. For some reason I am not anywhere near as anxious as i was before the Tigers won those 12 games in a row to clinch the division. They had choked so many times in other years. Now I am just so proud that they got this far, I won’t be down on them if they lose tonight. Oh, I’ll be a little disappointedof course, but with the team they have and the disarray the rest of the teams in their division seem to be in, I just think we will continue to see good Tiger baseball next year and beyond, That said, GO TIGERS!!!

Same here, illinois. Well, we know who the media is predicting to win and who they want to win. I hope the Tigers win, but won’t kill myself if they don’t. This team has a bright future. Go Tigers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Holy Moly Donny and Delmon

I guess Kelly wanted to prove early his deserving start.

Would of been better if they had not wasted that lead off double of Magglios!

The announcers are literally trying to will the Yanks into a win. What a joke.

We need to score more runs. GO TIGERS!

ya Marty, they are all concerned about a borderline pitch that Fister got, but not at all concerned about a pitch to Granderson that should of been called a strike. Well its no secret the Yankees are favored by tv, its all about $$$$

We better just worry about not stranding runners and hoping that someone on OUR side can come up with a clutch hit.
You know the Yankees will, eventually.
So far we have given them momentum twice. You can’t keep getting away with that

I agree Dan. We have had opportunity to put more runs on the board and Santiago and Peralta have come up empty.
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Meanwhile Fister is throwng a ton of pitches.

My heart is racing

Crap bases loaded and 1 out.

Umps making dang sure that Doug doesn’t get those ground balls, he isn’t giving Doug the low pitch to make sure of it! Can’t say what I think about him on here.

Is home plate umpire know where is strike zone? We survived. Well done Tigers.

Going to bottom 7th. Nervous still.

Did I seriously just hear them say that the Tigers upgraded defensively by putting in Raburn? These guys know nothing about the Tigers.

Not sure why he took Scherzer out. Nothing against Benoit, but seriously?

Oh no Benoit can’t throw strikes

How many more infield dribblers do the Yankees have left in their system? We need more runs.

No kidding!

Worried about Delmon, he is one of the only guys that is hitting!

Miguel either looks horrible at the plate, or is getting walked. This doesn’t look good!

Okay 3 more outs!

Well,, I finally had to go to the pill box for rolaids and a tranq. Gut-bustin, nerve wracking gamre to watch. We won’t go away easy. Go Tigers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

YA-HOO. ALDS Champions! And, we did it in NY. Go Tigers. Great game!!!!!!1

Unbelievable!

Congratulations! Tigers are the best. Amazing victory. What a baseball. I’m weeping. I love this team. Always a Tiger.

THE EVIL EMPIRE IS DOWN

Don Babe Kelly . Peralta has no range? Benoit-Valverde: 7 inning games.
Is Young injured? Verlander Fister Scherzer . They will need extra rooms for the Cy Youngs award to come.
Fister is only a two year experience pitcher but he looked like a veteran.

Yippie yahoo!!!!!

Great Pitching! NY got in a poor position by Nova going down but our staff is amazing. The nice thing is we beat them in NY and can say it was a fairy earned series. I don’t want to see any whining and don’t think there will be much. On to Texas! We owned them this year but they still had a better record like NY.

err…fairly earned…sheesh

There’s no crying in baseball, but what’s this salty discharge coming from my eyes?

Are you sitting close to Leyland? It could be the smoke

Wow. We did get the clutch hit after all. Been nice to get some more from the guys you expect to but VMart did when it was necessary and with 2 out!
Yankees got a lot of breaks and I’m sure if they hit a ball that hit the bag at 1st it would have bounced over Cabby’s head for a double!!
Infield hits and walks almost sent me to the cardiac unit.
A day to bask in this and then hopefully we see some renewed hitters on our Tiger team. We can’t afford Cabby, AJ and AVila not contributing enough.

Max Scherzer was the key of that game IMO.
Now we get JV to start off and I awonder if they can sneak Max in there for game 2?
I think they probably could.

Amazing. I must say I thought those damn Yankees were gonna find a way.

It is all about the scouting. By the time the step in they have been dissected, analyzed and classified. It is not unusual for stars to struggle in postseason and to blue collar to be in the spotlight with the game winning homerun.
But for Cano and the player that injured Guillen , Yankees weren’t better.
ARod and Texeira( Third to last in clutch in MLB) were tamed by Detroit pitchers
Supposedly Guillen will be in the roster. So i guess Leyland will take out Dirks
The bullpen needs a fix. Pauley or Below could be called back.
Verlander, Scherzer( Like Verlander after the friday game?), Fister, Porcello, Verlander, Scherzer , Fister?

Scherzer was huge in this series and hopefully that won’t be overlooked. Him winning Sunday then stepping up today turned the tide. Delmon Young would be my other MVP along with Valverde. Here we come Texas!

Oh, my, oh, my, oh , my. How sweet it is. At least 4 more games coming up. Yes, I hope some more of the Tiger bats wake up. Saturday then …..

That is a good one El Tigre :-) Nope. No Leyland here.

Max only threw 32 pitches, none stressful. He probably would have thrown more in a bulpen session.

i dare say they were all stressful. I could feel the stress all the way down here in South Carolina. GO TIGERS, GREAT WIN!

Since these are fan comments here, I want to congratulate all you fans for making it through tonight’s game. Win or lose in the ALCS, you won’t have to live through another gut-wrencher like this one. It was the Yankees in their ballpark and we had to hold on for a 3-2 win, and I can’t think of anything more nerve wracking. Even though I thought we had an even chance to win, I’m still kind of stunned that we actually did.
JL pulled the right switches again. Can’t say enough about Max and Delmon in this series. Don Kelly has earned honorary membership in all Tiger families tonight.
Happily looking forward to another week of baseball and it should be fun for all of us.
Simply outstanding.

Worth noting: October 6 was the 2-year anniversary of game 163 in 2009.

Kelly, Delmon, Peralta’s defense, Benoit earning every penny of what we paid him, a win with nothing out of Cabrera, Austin Jackson breaking his slump in a huge way… If this team continues to play as well down the roster, 1-25, as they did tonight, they’ll win the World Series. What a baseball game.

That game comes close to Angels game with Weaver. All the bullpen moves by Giaradi and we score off of Sabathia. Yankees had the sacks full twice with one out. Seems like the game stood still at times, with all the moves, it was so slow. It was great to watch the celebration on FS Detroit and MLB network. How do you think Benoit felt when he had to take that bandaid off in front of Millions? Valverde, MVP. Go Tigers!

DB I know at times we looked at each other and went it’s only the 4th or the 7th,! It moved in slow motion with all the pitching changes. I am waking up this morning and still can’t believe it, I thought our chance to win ended on Tuesday night. Yes I know I had little faith!

Holy smokes guys, that game last night was unbelievable. I rarely have the computer up during games and to be honest I was terrified to move from my spot. Unbelievably I missed the first inning putting my kids to bed and was so thrilled to see back to back homeruns. Delmon has been huge and so has Kelly. Fister pitched a good game, just had to use too many pitches to go deeper, but he did very well and I can’t say enough about Max. I wasn’t so sure he could do the relief spot but I was very wrong, he was tremendous. Benoit got out of his jam – lots of pressure pitching and we did not cave. To only give up 2 runs in NY when they had bases loaded twice is truly unbelievable. I taped some of the post game stuff but loved what I was seeing, Valverde could hardly contain himself, I did not understand one word of his post game interview but was loving every minute of it.

Old Jimmy is going to make me cry all the time now, he has such love for his team and once again he gets to highlight Don Kelly. Credit to Leyland for putting Don in the 2 spot instead of Santiago. I again thought the Maggs replacement was a bit early, but he also would not have come up to bat for a few innings so I guess that made sense. Sure hope Delmon is ok. I see someone posted Guillen might be back, first I heard of that. It would be nice to have a bat off the bench, I kept wondering who could pinch hit last night and Betemit was my only thought and to be honest after his game 4 swings I didn’t want him in there.

The Raburn upgrade comment was a good one – I couldn’t watch him catch that fly ball, was afraid it might pop out. Then again compared to Delmon who also drops fly balls it might have. I did predict Raburn would hit a dinger if he got the shot but I guess we will never know.

Way to go guys – I am still shaking with excitement which either says I need to get a life or that I just love my Tigers beyond belief. Be ready for the Rangers

Oh and Jhonny’s play getting to the other side of 2nd for that ball was terrific, just saying how he misses so many balls up the middle and he does that. am guessing he was shifted but I don’t care, that was a huge play my man.

Nice the way it all worked out with the final week push to gain homefield falling a game short, of which I was guiltily glad. We missed two horrible weather days in Detroit and won the series anyway. I don’t think it matters who has homefield for the ALCS. And best of 7 is far less intense than best of 5.
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I was happy to hear Leyland say that he was against the added wild card play-in game or games. He makes out like his input on that committee is nothing, but I’d think he’s putting himself into a position to be paid attention.

Benoit’s Band-Aid!!!
C’mon Girardi that was bush league. I would expect more from him than that.
Is that any more of a distraction than some of the the bling draped around some guys’ necks? Next thing is we’ll have the the trainer going out to trim John Axfords mustache or Brian Wilson’s beard?
To think that a guy has to remove a first aid product and not a 2 lb. neclace is ridiculous.

Mentioned above about Austing Jackson breaking his slump What? AJ struck out 3 times last night-twice to lead off an inning. The hit he had was a broken bat single.
I hope you are right about breaking his slump but nothing I saw last night showed he is even close to do doing that.
That being said, going back to Texas may awaken his bat and mind. I like AJ a lot and have said more than a couple of times that I think he is going to be a star.
I still think that if he is striking out 3+ times a game he should not be leading off.
Let’s see what he does in Texas tomorrow then be willing to adjust the lineup to ensure that someone with a better approach at the plate gets that extra at bat in the late innings.

I shut the TV off in the 7th inning and just listened to Dan and Jim on radio. Couldn’t watch and my stomach was killing me. Went back this morning and re-watched what I only heard on the radio. Outstanding performances by the Tigers.
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The Yankees looked stunned and so did their fans. They ccouldn’t believe it.

Your comment about shutting the TV off and turning the radio on is funny Pup. I did just the opposite in a manner of speaking. I turned the sound off on my $3.99 mlb special package. Once I stopped subjecting myself to TNT/TBS commentators talking up the banditos Yankees it was clear sailing. I calmed down and just thought through was I was seeing in a more positive way. Just for yucks, did anyone else have to watch the game on mlb? Probably not.
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I’m out of the stone age and on to Fox baby!

By the way, those guys (Darling, Smoltz, etc.) rarely gave the pitch count. It was not posted anywhere on the screen in game. When clicking on the line score there was nothing but dashes or goose eggs. No replays of ANY play. Keeps your mind in the game though.

Even roadside motels have TBS, Marty. :-)
Now I wish I had bought ALCS tickets with those 4:19 start times.
Dan, while I agree with you regarding Jackson at leadoff, you know it’s not changing.
I made sure to wear a Tigers shirt to get my haircut by the barber from New York.
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Something I wanted to relate from Monday night’s game but didn’t have time: there was a young guy in our section who kept chanting “CC’s fat” over and over. When he changed it to “CC sucks” it gained traction and was taken up by several sections. Kind of rolls off the tongue nicely. Later a guy wearing a Jeter jersey came up the steps, I suppose to find a friend. He got into a little shouting match with our chanting guy, then walked back down the stairs. He stopped at the railing and was peering down onto the lower level when everyone started chanting “Jump! Jump! Jump!”
Playoff games are fun.

You can still get tickets to those games, Rich. I bought my tickets in ’06 on ebay the night before game 4 of the ALCS. Haven’t checked recently, but tickets were available for the NY series. Just checking in case I got lucky enough to find a ride. My son drove last time and maybe, if we’re lucky, and it lasts long enough, we might find our way to Detroit again.

Thanks Pup, but I can’t make the drive up to Detroit again. Additional time off work would be an issue. Now…….if we were playing the WS in Philadelphia, that’s different.
Anyone watching Brewers/D-backs? Fun to watch them have to deal with the pressure.

They’ve got bugs too Rich:-) Seriously, I have cable options but a few years ago made a decision to limit TV by limiting choices. I generally don’t miss the wasted time in front of the boob tube as my dad used to call it. But the downside is that there are a few channels I’d like to get, while most of the basic ones I get are awful. And so, given what I had too put up with this past week, I think I’m ready to get off my high horse and spring for an upgrade. You’ve shamed me into it Rich:-)

Well Dan, you are the only one that responded to the band-aide issue. The funny thing about it was listening to talk radio, they don’t think Giaradi is a good manager. But that move was his best one of the game. About AJ, I would like to see a bunt. Don Kelly did it. Start the game with a bunt. What is wrong with that? Go Tigers!

There is some good baseball being played and some great individual performances as well. The Carpenter/Halladay matchup was a treat to watch. They were like neurosurgeons out there on the mound. Unbelievable really.
Obviously we would like to hear that Delmon is OK. I find it more than surprising that he is being allowed to speak to media at all about this. He said yesterday he can’t throw properly, without pain. Man, I don’t think it is a really good idea to put that on the PA system for the Ranger baserunners to hear.
This will be a more challenging series than people are expecting.
Avila, struggling with the bat, is now going to be held to task behind the plate as well. These southpaws are not gonna let Alex improve his anemic bat avg much, that’s for sure.The Ranger runners are not going to make life as easy on him as the Yankees mysteriously did. It will be a test for Avila. Some players can totally separate there defensive and offensive performances but often there is some leakage from the slump that carries over. I see it in Jackson. He is not as sharp out there in CF as he can be. Another challenge will be the ability of guys like Cabby to come through big against the predominatnly LHP of the Rangers. And I mean real big. He, AJ, Raburn and Magglio will have to hit well in order to offset the loss or diminishment of Delmon Young. The oblique could not have happened at a worse time.
Even a minor grade one oblique strain generally can result in a visit to the DL.
Playing with it is difficult and will affect much more than Delmon’s throwing. It will be the swing that will cause him grief.
Pain killers help but he then runs the riks of masking it enough to cause tearing.
I wish him well with this.
No word yet on the roster.
Another key to this series may well be Ryan Raburn.
But in my mind it will be all about Austin Jackson and Miguel Cabrera.

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