May 18th, 2012

Leyland: People have a right to be upset

Some interesting remarks from Jim Leyland in his pregame chat with reports, a lot of it centered around the fan criticism over the slow start. Long story short, he understands it, and he’s not going to blast it. Here’s the roundup:

  • “We’re in one of those situations where there’s so much going on, where there’s so much negative talk about us right now, and rightfully so, that you just have to stay the course. And that’s what I do. I don’t alter my routine. I don’t alter the players’ routine. I just don’t believe that’s the approach to take. I just stay the course and keep doing what you do.”
  • “It boils down to simple stuff: Come to work, do your job, try to do your job well each day. That’s no different than you guys’ job. We’re in the limelight a little bit more. But it’s just coming here and doing your job. It’s not a matter of some rah-rah speech. It’s not a matter of some negative stuff. The one thing I won’t let happen is be negative with myself and the coaches. I’m a positive guy. I stay positive.”
  • “I’m a grown man, and I’m a realist, and I think that if you’ve seen me over the six years that I’ve been here, I get a little snippy once in a while when I think that people are unfair. They’re not being unfair right now. I can take it. I’m a man. We have to take it. We’re not performing well. We haven’t performed well.”
  • “We have to take that. We have it coming right now. You’d better have broad shoulders. Does anybody like it? No. But do we expect it? Yes, I expect it. We got it last year, and we turned it around and that changed it. It’s one of those things basically that if things don’t get better, it heats up even more, but if you start winning games and you get back into that, people start feeling good again about the Tigers, and that changes as well. I’ve been around long enough to know how that works. That’s part of this business.”
  • “You don’t snap at reporters when you’ve got it coming. Right now, I have nothing to come back with, because we haven’t been very good. Simple. You’ve got to take it when you’ve got it coming, and right now we’ve got it coming. It’s pretty simple.”
  • “Oh, I’m ticked off, believe me. I’ve been ticked off a few times this year. But I can tell you this: It’s changed. The yelling and screaming and throwing stuff like I did 20 years ago, that doesn’t work anymore. Forget it. It’s a whole different society, whether it’s your kid, my kid, ballplayers, whatever, that doesn’t work anymore. You talk sensibly and you make your points, and you get firm when you make your points, normally in a private conversation. But that doesn’t work anymore, all that rah-rah stuff and throwing stuff, that doesn’t affect guys at all. That doesn’t help anybody hit a slider. That doesn’t help anybody throw one over the plate. So you grind your butt off.”
  • “If people are waiting for me to start throwing stuff and start yelling and screaming, to put on a show for the media, I’m not going to do that. That’s not going to happen. I’m not going to put on some phony show. The simple fact is we’ve got to get better, start winning some games. Then the negative talk will turn back to positive talk, with the exception of some people that are going to be negative no matter what. … But right now, the people have a right to be upset.”

Friday: Tigers vs. Pirates

Both Austin Jackson and Jose Valverde are reportedly doing better today, but neither are available tonight. Valverde looked and sounded particularly well, but seconded that he can’t pitch tonight.

TIGERS

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

P: Justin Verlander

PIRATES

  1. Josh Harrison, DH
  2. Neil Walker, 2B
  3. Andrew McCutchen, CF
  4. Pedro Alvarez, 3B
  5. Garrett Jones, RF
  6. Casey McGehee, 1B
  7. Nate McLouth, LF
  8. Clint Barmes, SS
  9. Mike McKenry, C

P: Charlie Morton

June 10 game at Reds is now a night game

If you’re one of what will likely be many Tigers fans making the trip to Cincinnati in a few weeks to see the Tigers visit the Reds, you might want to look over your Sunday plans. ESPN has picked up the series finale on June 10 for Sunday Night Baseball, meaning what was a 1:10pm game is pushed back to 8:09.

It’ll be the Tigers’ first Sunday night appearance this season. Detroit wasn’t on the original slate of games ESPN announced during the spring, but the network left open a block of dates in June so that it could pick the best game given the way teams are playing at the time. While the Tigers are hanging around .500 right now, they still have a contending team with star power, as do the Reds with Joey Votto.

The move should’ve impact the Tigers too drastically. The next day is an off-day for them in Chicago before they begin a three-game series against the Cubs at Wrigley Field.

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