Sunday: Tigers vs. Rangers

As expected, Prince Fielder gets the day at designated hitter. Don Kelly gets the start at first, with Miguel Cabrera staying at third. Ramon Santiago gets the start at second against righty Colby Lewis. The result is a lineup that alternates right- and left-handed batters before ending with a switch-hitter.

Adrian Beltre is out of the lineup for the Rangers after his hamstring strain yesterday. Alberto Gonzalez gets the start at third base.

TIGERS

  1. Austin Jackson, CF
  2. Brennan Boesch, RF
  3. Miguel Cabrera, 3B
  4. Prince Fielder, DH
  5. Delmon Young, LF
  6. Alex Avila, C
  7. Jhonny Peralta, SS
  8. Don Kelly, 1B
  9. Ramon Santiago, 2B

P: Drew Smyly

RANGERS

  1. Ian Kinsler, 2B
  2. Elvis Andrus, SS
  3. Josh Hamilton, LF
  4. Michael Young, DH
  5. Nelson Cruz, RF
  6. Mike Napoli, 1B
  7. Yorbit Torrealba, C
  8. Alberto Gonzalez, 3B
  9. Craig Gentry, CF

P: Colby Lewis

86 Comments

I’ve been to a few games this year and there is a trend at the ballpark which to me is disturbing, the massive booing of Brandon Inge. It reminds me of what these people do to Grilli a few years back which led him to have a horrible home era and a good one on the road. While I’m not sure Brandon deserves to be on this team right now and I understand people inpatients, I’m not trying to defend his play, but what do people want him to do, he was the one given the contract, his play isn’t a lack of effort, but maybe age and a lack of talent. I don’t know what people think its going to do for his confidence to boo the hell out of him, but it sure isn’t going to help. People just shouldn’t acknowledge it at all but booing to me is counterproductive, and embarrassing to the fans.

I think they see it as voting. The decision to hand Inge a 2ndbase job was not a popular one. It was okay during ST when everything is la-la-land but it won’t fly now. Management should have known this was coming, and now it’s here.

I was at both games yesterday and I’m not a fan of booing. I agree that Brandon isn’t the player we need but booing him is counterproductive and uncalled for.

I agree that the booing should not be happening. As Alex Avila said during the radio postgame show, these people need to remember what Brandon has done since he’s been in Detroit, not just on the field but in the community. That doesn’t excuse poor play, but this guy has done more good for the area in the past 10 or so years than most people realize. He didn’t demand to play 2B this year, he only asked for a chance and didn’t complain about losing his job at 3B. I personally don’t condone booing any player, ever.

I hate, hate, hate booing – it is classless in my opinion. Not clapping in my mind gets the point across enough – booing to me is a very personal thing to do and I agree, I doubt Inge is intentionally doing crappy – when someone is not doing their best, hustling, etc then the booing is a bit more ok with me

So that’s one LH batter in their entire lineup, and that’s Hamilton? Good luck Drew.
The Rangers have scored two runs in the last 16-17 innings, so maybe they’re cooling off. Our offense is overdue to explode.

Never, never ask Rob Deer about Venezuela. He knows that are things worse than been booed.

Good point!

Brandon is just one of many on this team whom aren’t hitting. As Dickerson said yesterday, this team is having difficulty hitting some pitchers most are not.

the radio guys are beyond frustrated right now, almost funny to listen to them if it wasn’t so sad how pathetic our bats have been

I haven’t booed anyone since I was 12 years old. I mean, it’s not a very adult thing to stand up and go “booo.” Think about it. It’s dumb.

A lead off double and nothing to show for it. Not pleased in the least with this do called high powered offense we have! Crock of crap!

Ditto Gk.

Two teams in the central with a better team batting average, and the other two not far behind. Freaking twins and KC o a better job hitting.

…..and they almost wasted Santiago’s triple. Ramon drove in 2 runs Saturday and has scored their only run so far today. Well, JL will take care of that tomorrow by sitting Santiago in favor of Inge or Raburn.

Finally CS in the boxscore. They were running by the free lane

The way this team is (not) hitting there is no way they will get a split in the series today.
Great to see Smyly throw well, and at times, very well.
Where are Boesch and Avila? We really need them to start hitting again.
The power outage on this team is disturbing. The inability to hit starting pitching is beyond common sense. Perhaps if they break out offensively they will start enjoying themselves again—kinda like in Scherzer’s 1st start. That was fun.

The only hitter on this team who has more homers than Jaskon is Cabrera. That says an aweful lot!

Boy that Gallaraga perfect games talk riles me up! Again the talk is always about poor Jim Joyce, instead of the victim in the situation. I felt bad for Joyce, but I felt worse for Armando. The thing that disappointed me most about the situation (other than the call itself) is that Joyce in my opinion made it about him. He should of deflected and made it about Armando instead of about himself.

Well stated GK. Booing has it’s place on a lighter level……..booing an ump, an opposing player, a fan missing a catch on a pop up, things like that. But to boo Inge who has had a long history and loyalty with Detroit is not fair to him. So he wants to play? So he wants to earn the money they gave him? Can anyone blame him for that? It’s management’s decision to keep him. Boo them. They set him up for the booing.
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Regarding why the Tigers are 10-5 with the poor hitting they’ve demonstrated so far, and doing it without the services of Fister. Smyly has had a great deal to do with keeping things settled within the entire pitching staff. The guy could end up being the number three starter in terms of games won by the team in his starts. It’s way early to tell but I couldn’t help throwing that out there. Tigers are also winning the close games which is a very good stat.

Can you imagine making that call in a playoff game or World Series.

Who’s to say that the boos aren’t directed at management? Maybe they’re booing every appearance of Inge, rather than Brandon himself. Know what I mean?

You know as well as I do that isn’t the case.

He can still make 6 million if he finds an Independent League to play in. I don’t like booing either but maybe the Tigers’ brass will get tired of it too and do something about it.

They are allowing Smyly go deeper in the game than Porcello in his first season

Porcello was younger then.

It was not a criticism, only and observation.Porcello had three years of experience by the age of Smyly and only then they allowed him to go deep. And even then he was skipped once to rest him

Good points, Smyly is older than Procello. Who is to say that Smyly will not be skipped later in the year. They do need to watch his innings.

Tomorrow is dayoff. Are they in a hurry? they are making swing at the first pitch

A lot of other parks, those two flyouts by Austin and Cabrera in the 6th would of been homers. Back to back to back!

Even a CoPa but in the summer

Cubs outfielder Marlon Byrd confirmed that he has been traded to the Red Sox, tweets Bruce Levine of ESPNChicago.com. The Cubs will receive Michael Bowden and a player to be named later in exchange for Byrd while paying all but roughly $400K of his $6.5MM salary. JUST SAYING.

Smyly has been impressive. He has a lot to be proud of in his first few outings! The test will be when the book starts to get out on him. I like what I see I far!

been wondering what leyland sees in wilk as a starter that he doesn’t see in below. is it that he views wilk as more a strike thrower and below more of a nibbler? some other factors that make wilk the better candidate?

I was wondering the same thing?

Below’s competition is not Wilk, it is Smyly. He lost out to Smyly. Hopefully, Fister will be back soon. Do not discount how important Below’s role is to the bullpen. What he did on Saturday saved that bullpen for the rest of the weekend.

assume that benoit is not available after throwing 33 pitches last night. valverde with 30 pitches too, so back of bullpen not exactly fresh today.

Well Avila threw 2 out and had to errors, the second which was extroidinarily costly. Very disappointing! Dint do squat at the plate either to this point.

Wow my grammatical errors….. That’s “two errors. And Didn’t do squat

Ok, 10 tth inning . Put a runner on base, be patient ,no swing at first pitch…

That is the way it is done..

Tigers hitters remain unimpressive and so far over hyped.

Walks kill! We’ve walked a ton of batters today.

Ballester would be the only remaing arm with Below unavailable and Don Kelly out of the game?

Between the errors today, the walks and this one sided strike zone, I’ve had it! It seems weird to say, but other than the first couple of games of the season hasn’t been a lot of fun to watch.
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And when you see replays and the stupid ump doesnt even notice a bunted ball hitting the batter, well do you even deserve to be an ump. But that being said Avila didn’t make his second error of the day this game is over in 9!

He has been a starter his whole career but , he has the stuff you need to be a Tiger´s closer. Joke appart, he kept the game at reach. He did not throw it away.

Honest to god some of these pitches he is calling strikes for Rangers pitchers and calling balls for ours is amazingly obviously one sided. I hate freaking umpires!

10 hits in the last 20 innings of baseball.
No team wide power again–other than an isolated HR, these guys are not doing their job.
Benoit also has to be able to get through an 8th inning without giving up a walk. It happens almost every time.

Another tough loss but as I recall they had struggles last April as well. Let’s face it they don’t like cold weather. Have faith in our boys they will come around. At least your boss isn’t from Texas, I’m hoping I can avoid him this week :)

Bad call on the bunt and nearly every break in the series went the Rangers way. Somewhat like last weekend in Chicago. This is because we’re not scoring runs; every play is magnified. That’s the bottom line. I’m not seeing many good professional ABs from these professional hitters. Someone needs to get their attention.
I’m happy with 10-6 with the way we’ve hit, but hitting is the elephant in the room. What’s going on here?

Jason, how about any article drawing a comparison between JV and Smyly??. Both went to college, had one season in the minors split between Lakeland and Erie, and jumped the next season to the show. After three starts Smyly has a much better ERA through three games than JV did in his rookie year and JV had accumulated a 1-2 record. Today was our first loss of a one run game. Coke came out of hibernation and did a good job. Cold weather is not good for Benoit will it warm up before Tuesday?? Monday is a great time for an off day filled with BP. These guys need all they can get.

If your not going to hit you’d better dang well pitch and field the ball. Ultimately hitting is bad, but even with that, the walks by the relievers and an enormously costly error by Avila were the downfalls today,

I kept waiting for the text message to my phone. Never got one. As I was leaving work some guy started talking Tigers and told me the score. Made me feel sick.

Last year with VMart they had an extra spot.This year they dont have that flexibility.The Tigers have 3 players to play 2b. And two that can play both the IF and the OF.So, release outright( Do not DFA, he would cling like a tiger) Inge and call another reliever.Until Fister is back they will need an extra arm in the bullpen. It is that or look for some veteran with rubber arm to be the 5th starter for two month and then became a reliever. You can go with Smyly, he won it. But not him and Wilks.
The bats will wake up. It is time to make changes( JL wont do that) to make it happens.
Avila´s defense is something to worry about.He was projected to be a 280 hitter. Above that is a bonus

Was at the game today, Brandon took a beating from the crowd. Those around me were laughing at his average between the booing.
Don’t want to see him on this team anymore, but I refuse to boo him. I can’t help but wonder how long this will continue? By that, I mean how long will Tigers management ignore this situation?

How long can they ignore Raburn’s inability to play the game of baseball? I don’t hear him getting booed even though his average is just as pathetic.

Hello ladies and gentlemen. It’s been a long time since my last post, but I have read your comments daily. Since last September I have been dealing with the Big C in my life. I just finished an aggressive radiation treatment,and will br rechecked in July to see if it worked. I am very blessed, as I have worked nearly every day. I am retiring from the teaching profession in 31 school days. I already have ticekts for the July series in Baltimore, and believe it or not, I still bleed Tiger Blue.
Just a few comments; my opinion only. Am I still an Inge defender? Yes, I defend him as a human being. Is he carrying his load? Not even a shovel full. Should he be on this team? As long as Mr. Ilitch wants him.
Enough on Brandon. On the day, Fielder was signed, we all went into Over-hype Drive! The pennant and WS are ours. We hadn’t played a game on paper. We go to Spring Training, and we’re the best since the 35-5 Boys of 68. We hit the block running,go on the road, and suddenly no one can hit. Fielder and Miggs have the big homer game, and we pop the cork.
From that game on, let’s blame Inge. It got worse when he came back from the DL.
The bats stopped. So we can trash Inge because Rayburn has two hits, Fielder hasn’t hit anything close to a homer, Boesch looks like a dear in a headlight pose, Avila has cooled off, Peralta has cooled off, Dirks is hurt, Fister is hurt, Benoit can’t throw strikes, Valverde can’t- well, it’s all Inge’s fault. Inge bashing has been a huge part of our blog lately.
Her’s my proposal! Buy him out; get rid of the curse from the team. Call up Worth.
And what do you have? A team that can be good, if everyone who was supposed to produce, does so. I love Fielder. His hustle and desire are amazing. But maybe he needs an adjustment period to a new league. Great swing; good hands, but maybe he needs a little time to settle in. Start Santiago at second every game; not Inge, but Razor. Concede that Rayburn only hits when the temp averages 75 degrees.
Maybe, Avila will not repeat last year, and maybe that uppercut swing of Boesch’s is not going to give us .280, 20, and 80.
Watch out for the White Sox in our division. Guess what; we can’t hit. Let’s blame Inge; after all he goes 0-3 about every third game. Amazingly, he would be a nice fit on an NL club with his .100 average(dreaming, I know). But to all my TigerBloggers whom I greatly respect, quit trashing Inge. He’s not the reason we don’t hit; he’s a very small part.
Finally, I fear that this team was hyped so high, that any thing short of a trip to the Big Show is failure. Lot’s of potential on paper. So are the Red Sox and Phillies.
This is why baseball stands as the greatest sport in the world. It has to be played between the lines. Whether Inge is between those lines or not. Just my opinion.

Greg

Can hardly believe you’ve made it to work every day. You are one strong man. Greg is a good example of why I don’t believe in that “everything happens for a reason” view. Things just happen, imo, and sometimes we have absolutely no control over it. Here’s hoping good things happen for you in July. You could have told us sooner, you know. Personally, I would like to know if someone is ill or having a setback of some kind. You kind of wonder when someone doesn’t post for a long time.
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There have been many cruel remarks made about Inge, Leyland, McClendon, Rod Allen, C-Mo, Magglio, Gene Lamont, etc., etc., etc. No hateful comments to my knowledge on this blog, but there is on other message boards and comments in the papers. Yes, Greg, I do blame Inge on the discombobulation as Jim Price calls it since Inge returned to the lineup. I totally blame him for messing with this team’s mojo. There, I said it. Just my opinion, though. It’s almost all of the men who complain the loudest about him, so I guess I’m in the minority, but Mike Maroth and his
wife were dearly loved and admired for their work in Detroit. They had to let him go because he couldn’t do his job. He loved Detroit, but he had to go.
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Yea, Prince wears his heart on his sleeve. A very passionate person and player. I love him, too.

Glad to hear from you Greg, sorry for what you have been going through and hope you can enjoy the retirement coming up and catching more Tiger games.

Well Greg, it’s sounds like you’ve been going through hell the past several months, and I’m glad to hear it sounds like you are feeling better!
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I think most of us on here were condemning the treatment of Inge by the fans at the park. But to be honest while I think he is a problem he is one of many on this team who are not hittng! But I personally feel bad for him, because I think he’s a good man not a good hitter anymore.

Hi Greg. Good luck on your health issue. Aging has it’s drawbacks and it’s…….drawbacks. I’ve got tickets for the July Baltimore series too, Saturday and Sunday, so let’s try to hook up again.
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I don’t think Inge is being bashed and trashed very much on this site, if at all. Read some other sites sometime and you’ll see what I mean. There’s some downright cruelty out there. People here, more polite, are mainly discussing a roster issue. At least that’s how I see it.
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Every season, management goes north with one roster then, over the course of the season, changes it to something different, and usually better, barring injuries as in 2010. It will get straightened out and things will flow better. The odd thing is, it sound like I’m discussing a struggling team and that’s not the case. We have a tough April schedule this year, yet we’re playing .625 ball. I would have been happy with 12-10 after the first 22 games. That could still happen, but it becomes less and less likely.

After all I have read, Ramon should be the starter at 2nd base. Greg, good to hear from you. You can beat that “C”! I would never boo a player but maybe a manager….

It would be nice if Inge could hit enough that he could be come tradeable. Which is my guess on what they are trying to do. Get him to hit enough so they can trade him.

SLC–can’t afford to do that. Plus, it will never happen.
Classic JL tonight, bring a wide-eyed youngster up from Toledo and put him in a must win game in extra innings against the best hitting team in baseball. Smooth.
Our bullpen (though not to blame) is unreliable. The only guy there I trust is Dotel. I don’t consider below a bullpen guy. He is just a godsend. At least to this point. Reminds me of John Hiller. Coke did come in and do a great job.
Avila and Boesch have to start raking. Avila does not look good up there (either does BB). Peralta and Young have to start reaching the fence.
None of this has anything to do with Inge. Inge is a non-factor–both literally and figuratively. Matter of time till DD bites the bullet and does what he has to do.
Big disappointments for me so far ( and how dumb am I to expect anything else) is Raburn. Closely followed by Avila and Boesch (my favourite Tigers).

On a bright side, I went to see the Mud Hens play – luckily we did not see Schlereth! I am glad they sent him down, he needs more work and maybe they can figure something out when he is down there, at least they recognized that he is not the solution at this times. The Hens bats were alive and well, had some of the best seats there – 5 rows off the visitors ondeck circle. My son got a ball from the opposing catcher as he came off the field – a priceless moment, would have been better if my daughter got one too but can’t be too greedy. Our pitching was good, bats were better. Probably the most fly balls I have ever seen in a game for whatever reason both teams were lifting them – barely any plays for the infield it seemed.

I am glad the Tigers have a day off – I need a day off from the stress of waiting for us to hit and from Valverde!

Dan, I like your comparison of Below to Hiller. You nailed it, man.
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By the 11th inning yesterday, JL’s choices were Weber or Balester. I said at the time that Jim would have people all over him no matter which one he chose. He kind of made his own bed by using everyone else up when, with an off day coming up and considering the importance of this game, he might have stretched them out a little more, especially Coke. JL may have overestimated our offensive abilities. Myself, I would have chosen Balester. I prefer the experience regardless of what happened on Thursday night.
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Ron Washington, on the other hand, is the luckiest son of a gun in baseball. With the kid on the mound, bases loaded and none out, he puts on a suicide squeeze? There are so many things that could have gone wrong doing that, but he got away with it. Good for him that he has some much talent on his club because I rarely like his moves. I’m thinking of last year’s WS.
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Starting tomorrow, fellas, how about grinding out some ABs?

Weber was brought up because both Below and Balester could not pitch in long relief on Sunday.
I liked seeing Coke get stretched out but would rather have seen Weber given the ball in the tenth inning and given Valverde a day off. Weber was ready to go 80-90 pitches.

Why couldn’t Balester pitch? He last worked on Thursday.

Balester has given us four pretty good long relief outings this month and his pitch count is getting high. IMO he should only be used once or twice more this month. Remember we gave up a #1 draft pick for him. We don’t want him on the DL before May.

well…. we gave up Perry for Balester. Of note, Perry is in AAA.

On Wednesday , they will have a hard test because the king is coming to town.
AJax is regressing a little but still he is doing his work. There is no regret for losing Granderson. He is proffiting on playing half the season at the the short RF of Pinball Stadium and 20 more at the green sandbox and O´s park. He wont be hitting like that at CoPa. While Jackson is the perfect fit for the huge outfield of CoPa
Boesch was injured because of his swing. Did he change his batting instance? Is he hitting with less confidence? Is he still out of rhythm?
Cabrera is beginning to bat. He went 0 for 4 on saturday night as expected with his .232 career as DH. He needs to forget about his defense to really get it going
Fileder is not living to the expectations. Like Cabrera in 2008( only season below .300 with the Tigers) and Pujols he is adjusting and is not feared at all.
Young is Young, he will swing when the pitcher throw the ball to the ump asking to change it.
Avila is paying for the overwork of 2011.He must go down to the 8th post until he get his time back
Peralta is doing his work.As usual
Santiago as Dan pointed during ST did not have his reps in defense and I add neither at bat. An bating from the bench is harder than anything in baseball.Been a regular he could bat second
Hate? Hate is reserved for the Evil Empire( excluding players named Granderson)
Still the 3rd best record in the league.
And again:No team is as good as its looks when is winning neither as bad as its looks when is losing.

Balester’s four appearances have been against four different teams, which I commend JL for doing that. He threw 61 pitches Thursday against Texas. It’s better they don’t see him again until later this season. Weber was brought up to pitch Saturday or Sunday and he came in the game at the best time for us.

well Navin field (or Tigers stadium) doesn’t exist anymore so maybe that is why

Watching images of Pudge retirment while the Yankees ruin another celebration. 6 -1. Never invite them to a party

Jason, could JL and DD be in Toledo tonight?? Andy Oliver has a shutout through six innings and Brad Eldred has a double, homer, and nine straight games with RBIs!! His game hitting streak is past fifteen, I think.

Oliver walked 5…. that is his problem. He needs to work out his control before he gets back to Detroit. I hope he can do it, he has great stuff. But he needs to throw quality strikes.
Eldred is an interesting case. HE is 32, MLB experience. But in Detroit he would be a DH only. But his bat is on fire (although he is not facing any CC Sabathia’s in AAA)

Yes, you are right about A. Oliver, he has 21 walks in 20 innings with the Mud Hens. Very inconsistent with throwing strikes. Nobody digs in and rakes against him, he allows few hits. Last night he had an excellent line through six innings.They sent him out for the seventh and he walked two and then they pulled him. Probably trying to get him to 100 pitches.

Brad Eldred gets to Detroit only if we get a long term injury with one of our four corner power hitters. We do not want that to happen.

Better watch out…….Chicago is right there. Not to mention they are pitching and hitting.

One of the other Central teams was going to start well and it’s Chicago. If they stay healthy and their people play to their potential, they’ll be the team all year. I knew this wouldn’t be an early runaway.

You are absolutely right we will not runaway with the pennant without a fight from somebody. I see
Chicago as our first hurdle as the schedule has us playing them five more games in May. We can’t let them win the series in Detroit. Need to hold home turf and split the two gamer in Chicago.

I can feel it – can you feel it? I can feel it in my bones – that brandon inge will soon not be a tiger. keep tuned folks!

Here’s the closest thing to a fair trade that I can see. Brandon Inge and Don Kelly go to Baltimore for Brian Roberts and two million dollars. I’m not sure if you can trade for someone who
is on the DL, though.

*stands on milk crate* I just want to point out that the Braves optioned right-hander Jair Jurrjens to Triple-A Gwinnett following a disappointing start against the Dodgers yesterday. The right-hander has a 9.37 ERA through four starts, so he’s returning to the minors, where he last spent considerable time in 2007.
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So all the crocodile tears about how it was the most gawd awful deal ever can be put on the shelf until JJ starts pitching at the MLB level again.

Dude, we would have gotten more out of JJ the past four years than Renteria. :-) The striking thing about that trade was how many Tiger fans hated it at the time it was made. It wasn’t even in retrospect.

Lynn Henning has a nice (long) article on Santiago. Worth reading. On other sites, Ramon is unfortunately being lumped with Inge and Raburn when detailing the lack of offense from the 2ndbase position. I guess being most of the Tigers offense the last two games was somehow overlooked.
Myself, I own two name jerseys. One is Norm Cash. The other is Ramon Santiago.

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