ALCS Game 2 lineup: Tigers at Red Sox

ALCS Game 2 005

Just as Jim Leyland did behind Justin Verlander in Game 5 of the AL Division Series, he has Jhonny Peralta at shortstop and Don Kelly in left field. Max Scherzer hasn’t pitched to strikeouts and fly balls to quite the same extreme as Verlander, but he’s in the same mold when he’s on. Considering how many sliders and breaking balls the Red Sox missed in Game 1, it’s an offensive tradeoff Leyland clearly felt was worth the risk.

That said, Leyland defended Peralta’s play at short in the interview room.

“Jhonny Peralta is no donkey. He’s made the All‑Star team twice for me as a shortstop in the last few years,” Leyland said. “He’s a very good shortstop. We’re trying to get another bat in there, and we felt it would be the best way to do it.

“Like I said, this guy is a bona fide Major League shortstop. This is not a utility guy you’re playing there.  This is a topnotch shortstop.  He doesn’t have the range [Jose] Iglesias has, but this is a very, very good shortstop.”

So why Don Kelly in left field over Andy Dirks, you ask? Leyland has your answer.

“Donnie Kelly probably wouldn’t be playing left field tonight if Andy Dirks was swinging good,” Leyland said.

TIGERS (career numbers off Buchholz)

  1. Austin Jackson, CF (5-for-19, HR, 2 walks, 4 K’s)
  2. Torii Hunter, RF (4-for-24, 4 walks, 4 K’s)
  3. Miguel Cabrera, 3B (5-for-21, 3 walks, 3 K’s)
  4. Prince Fielder, 1B (1-for-6, walk, K)
  5. Victor Martinez, DH (0-for-6)
  6. Jhonny Peralta, LF (5-for-17, 4 K’s)
  7. Alex Avila, C (3-for-8, 3 walks, K)
  8. Omar Infante, 2B (2-for-8, walk, K)
  9. Don Kelly, LF (1-for-3)

P: Max Scherzer

RED SOX (career numbers off Scherzer)

  1. Jacoby Ellsbury, CF (5-for-9, HR, 3 walks, K)
  2. Shane Victorino, RF (2-for-10, 3 K’s)
  3. Dustin Pedroia, 2B (4-for-17, 2 HR, 2 K’s)
  4. David Ortiz, DH (7-for-15, 3 HR, 3 walks, 2 K’s)
  5. Mike Carp, 1B (2-for-8, walk, 5 K’s)
  6. Jonny Gomes, LF (2-for-6, 2 K’s)
  7. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C (5-for-12, HR, 4 K’s)
  8. Stephen Drew, SS (2-for-11, walk, 4 K’s)
  9. Will Middlebrooks, 3B (1-for-6, 4 K’s)

P: Clay Buchholz


But why Kelly over Dirks? Can someone help me understand that?

Well he didn’t exactly light the plate up in the ALDS – so it’s not like a miss him a whole bunch. And with the Gimp and the Donkey playing left infield, I’m probably going to want someone who can throw a guy out at home. Not that Kelly has a stud arm, but Andy’s arm reminds me of Johnny Damon’so_O

sept 3 – sept 29 andy hit .624 OPS with a WPA of -.39. He wasn’t THAT unlucky with a BABIP of .298 during that span. Remember?

Well I certainly don’t feel we are giving up much in outfield defense between Kelly and Dirks and as far as “potential” at the plate based on career stats, Dirks brings a ton more to the plate than Kelly.

Well, the Jose Everett experiment did not last long.

There is nothing unexpected with his bat. His Babip was way too high.
I do not like his cockiness at SS but his defense is golden glove caliber. He is expected to be there until 2019. They need to learn to live with his 200 avg

Kelly looked really bad last night. Dirks was a better option. His arm? it is not that LF is that far at Fenway

fair enough but his arm is horse apples

Estoy de acuerdo el Tigre, gracias!

De nada

I’d rather see Pena in the game, but whatever.

I really doubt we ever see him again in the field unless Avila is injured or in a really open game

I second that sentiment

It is easy to remove Iglesias from SS( I like that for those games at Fenway) but the leadoff name is etched in stone, 150 with 15 SO

Dirks 2 for 5 , HR vs Buchholz, little sample

Boston hitter took first pitch 29 of 35 times…that passive approach got them nowhere vs Sanchez and the pen…will they adjust or is that their plan for the series, and sticking to it? by contrast, in 9th inning alone, Tigers had 4 hitters swing at first pitch, including Hunter’s double.

I give credit to Jimmy Smokes for leaving Sanchez in to get the last out. He does make some good moves but the game has passed him by. To say that he got the Tigers back to their winning ways? The Tigers had no talent with a pizza baron owner who knew nothing about baseball. He hired Bo as president! What would it hurt to try Omar batting first and AJ last? SOC. Go Tigers!

Verlander with Peña: 3.48 SO/BB. With Avila:2.68
Sanchez: 4.75/3.43
Fister. 4.14/3.32
But for Scherzer, the starters SO more and walk less batter with Peña.
Better framing and less fear of calling breaking balls
That stats is pitcher-catcher work dependent . ERA has to be higher with Peña, He is part of the B-team.

Dirks isn’t swinging well? He isn’t swinging at all. Leyland cooled him off with 2 weeks to go in the regular season.

That was a heck of an ab for Torii in the first…….swinging at a ball in the dirt.

He’s done that in every game but the 1st Oakland game.

Our hitters only saw 9 pitches total that 1st inning……have the Red Sox ever allowed that?

Taking pitches works against BoSox. It has been said by many after last night. High K against K pitchers. Taking pitches is a recipe for disaster for them.

Well we won’t get shut out. Infante hit that hard just right at em…..

The playoff MVP will walk away from Detroit again…..

So glad I was wrong about playing Avila tonight! What professional hitters we have with Jhonny and Victor!! They are both such a joy to watch right now. Even most of our outs tonight have been very hard hit balls!!

At least 2 that inning would have been nice. 1-0 Tigers win tonight, too!

Just when your about to give up on Avila…he comes through.

Geez I can’t believe Pedroia made that play!

This way , Miguel will be the leadoff

aj and torii continue to stink sheesh. but overall getting good swings not being fooled while max has them off balance

Gonna take 3 more runs to wind this game.

Is he doctoring the ball again?

yea he’s been grabbing his nasty vaseline filled hair then throwing. nobody is saying anything but it has been driving me bananas all game.

Guess we’ll need a shout out to win again tonight!!

Max sure knows how to shut that Krowd up.

Oh that double play EXACTLY what the Dr. Ordered!!!!

dang kelly not helpin the skip’s decision any are you?

The “carrier” will be aFA. But Jackson is making good contact now

That hit off the bat of Saltilamacchia (I’m sure that is spelled wrong) was very scary.


Oh, boy! The bats have come alive! 3-0


3-4-5 all have hits, when is the last time that happened in 1 inning?

Regular season

thats for sure!!

Holy moly….3 runs!

Uh, OH! More runs.

He cracked it.

Ya, lets start Pena!!



Yes!!!!! 5 runs!

Woohoo! Alex!

Kelly walks, hoping AJ isn’t the rally killer…

Long rest

Time to play Iglesias

good point

Dang……….Max needs to settle down now.

time to send out some pen pieces, or send max back out? have guys warmed up???

94. Still has one more inning in the tank

That’s the only run BoSox get.

I think Max goes out for another inning

Max pitched a great game. Let the ‘pen and defense carry them the rest of the way. Tigers can score a few extra insureance runs, too…

Miggy gettin stronger and stronger [grin]

max has them soooo off balance it’s sucked the life out of the ballpark lol.

Wow, I shouln’t be surprised that Max came out stoked and mowed them down! What a great performance!

do the tigers hittters have more familiarity with Peavy or does bostons hitters have more familiarity with doug fister? the former, right?

Damn Smyly……a freaking walk at least make em earn it!

He does tend to get to ‘fine’.
AlAl here? Iggy in–where’s Porcello/
Al is to inconsistent. Just don’t know what you get and a walk here ( something he does too often) and we’ve got major trouble.

no Coke?

just pepsi. jL making good decisions here

Is the pen going to screw this up after being so good last night?

I don’t know about this.

Ortiz lives for this stuff. 4 runs down and this particular at bat may have enough importance in it to determine the series..

I was right. There goes the game.

Too much BP fiddling

well, it was good for a moment

Freaking pen…………

this game is unbelievable. o my gawd. youngster down! youngseter DOWN!!

Right down the freaking middle……fooled us last night didn’t ya!

Hunter had it

Over ran it, 2 steps different and he gets that. Amazing effort.

I had a bad feeling when he started changing pitchers. Plus, Benoit pitched last night and should not be expected to get 4 outs. Ridiculous decision. I’m going to bed.

It was the right choice to pull out Scherzer from them on….


He’ll that was a group effort but Smyly and the damn walk…… passes never work out well and he didn’t get em close. The Benoit serves one up on a platter.

Smyly walk was frustrating but he only pitched to one batter last nite. He is the most reliable pitcher in the pen. Disgraceful waste of a masterful Scherzer performance,

Hunter over ran it by a step. What a catch that would’ve been.

Well Veras has had one good inning since he came and that was yesterday. I didn’t feel he was the right choice at all. Porcello should have been warm there.
4 different pitches screwed up that inning. And JL wanted every one of them at the time.
Could smell that from Ortiz. Actually shocked that Coke wasn’t brought in to face him.

Ortiz had some really good swings that last at bat against Scherzer. But, this is on Smyly can’t walk a batter in that situation.

Ok he will hit a HR but what is he doing there?

And now no Peralta in the lineup.

Well, Joe Buck and Tim McCarver sound like they have new life breathed into them after that grand slam.

what a game – seriously this is an amazing game. this is what happens when you have a team designed like this you know?

You can’t even script wright this stuff. Al may have got a K but he was lucky to get away with slider after slider. pedroia is probably the best player on this field.
Clutch. Super clutch.
Back to Al-no way I bring him in simply because of his control issues. He didn’t issue the walk but how can JL trust this guy in that situation?
I don’t get it..
We win this game we win the series. It’s a gift the BoSox have been given. We have to take it back.

Agreed, luckily we have Verlander going next to grab momentum back.

Fielder had to catch that

With Peralta the ball was in the corner

He shouldn’t have thrown it.

And that too

That’s probably the game…..Porcello most likely doesn’t have the stuff to get out of this.

Peña had that

Fielder is not one, he just lost the game for us. Awful on two plays in a row.
may as well walk the bases full now.
What a sorry piece of managing in that 8th inning.

Hard to blame managing, Smyly can’t walk him. Might of had Coke or Alvarez (is he even on the roster) to bring in for Ortiz, but do you really want either of them up as the tieing run?

The Fenway curse strikes again!

Taking one at Fenway is better than expected but..

yeah what a game. JV has some work to do. At least the bats showed some life – remember, homestands usually spark the offense.

So disappointing.

Gave em life………practically had them dead and buried and Veras with his double and to me the biggest no no the freaking walk by Smyly. So mad……what a wasted opportunity………like I said had em dead and almost buried and in a matter of 5 minutes the momentum of the series turned. Dombrowski is going to have a lot of explaining to do with this pitiful pen.

don’t forget yesterday the pen over performed — that wasn’t going to happen 2 days in a row, right?

Didn’t really want a sweep anyway. Last 2 times we swept the LCS we lost the series.

I would have brought Max back out in the 8th. If not, then where is Rick? Well, let’s win the next 3.

Smyly walked one but it was Benoit who served the HR. He is supposed to get that out.He is the closer
There was no need to take out Veras in the first place winning 5-1.

Not hard for me to blame the managing. Smyly has been mis-used all year and should have been given the 8th inning. ever since JL made him a 1 or 2 batter guy he has struggled. When he was the set-up man he did the job. Pretty clear JL over-managed tonight.
As to Veras and AlAl. JL always gets greedy wit Al and never seems to learn when he can and when he can’t be counted on.
Benoit sure gives up big HRs.
If the Tigers can come back from this they will more than deserve it. Probably as down and out as a team could feel in that clubhouse..
Fielder took his eyes off the foul pop. He butchered the throw from Iggy. Sure it was a bad throw but you don’t expect your 1st baseman to butcher it on the other end..
Fielder is not the reason we lost but I sure don’t look forward to seeing him out there the next 5 years.

“Iglesias trying to do too much, but lazy play by Prince not to get his (large) body in front of the ball there.”

That’s the over-managing part. The whole pen is shook up now and has almost no chance of success. Well, we still have Coke!

I agree that’s on Fielder. But the this game is another nail in Leyland’s coffin. I think he’s done after this season no matter what.

One thing is sure, Hunter wants to win and badly

He should try getting a few hits

That was a total bullpen meltdown. My only question would be should Scherzer have come out after seven? As I said after game 5 in Oakland, I’d need to ask him how he felt. A lot of extra energy spent in pitching these postseason games, and Max may have been done. I wouldn’t have expected the entire pen to fail in one inning.
I suppose Jim will get a lot of blame since he’s the manager, but I can’t really assign much. Tonight’s issues have been a season long thing, and now you use what you’ve got. Didn’t work this time.
I wouldn’t expect the Tigers to have any lingering effects from this one. And we got the split in Boston. The season goes on.

Game of inches. Torii overran that no more than a step. He makes the catch if he’s in position. Great effort none the less. Line drives right at you are the hardest to judge. It was probably hooking to the right as well. I was actually thinking maybe walk Ortiz though it would have brought the winning run to the plate. But Ortiz will kill you every time. Walk him and it’s still a 3 run lead. Porcello misused once again, although by the bottom of the 9th he was about the only option left. Our starters are great but to finish a game they would have to pitch 130+ pitches.

Re Fielder: If he is too lazy to work off the fat, not surprising he is lazy on that ball.

Agree about Smyly Dan.

Too late now, but…..with his flair for the dramatic, does anyone else think you should walk Ortiz? So the bases are loaded and it’s 5-2. Make the other Red Sox win the game. I really wonder how many could. But as usual, the SOC can’t think outside the box. Why did Benoit try to throw a perfect strike on the first pitch? Max and the Tiger hitters actually tried to win the game. What a shame.

I know we will always second guess here but, what the heck, that’s what we do. Rich, I wanted Max to pitch the 8th too. Even gassed he is a better option than anyone in the pen. It was his game. It was a 4 run lead.

Yeah Illinofan, me. We were thinking the same thing.

Leyland overmanaged that one I think. Was that the game plan all along for dealing with Papi? After Smyly faced Ellsbury he wasn’t going to stay in for the righties so was the plan to bring in Benoit no matter what the circumstances there?

Have to be happy with a split in Boston but up 2-0 was staring them right in the face and they imploded. And how much is Fielder getting paid to play like that?

Okay, got my answer. Max Scherzer: “I was done. You can write that. I was done.”
When all four relievers fail in the same inning, what can ya do? We got beat by a team that won 97 games and went 53-28 at home.

I would suggest not starting off Ortiz with a fastball, the one pitch he was sitting on.

Illinoisfan and Marty, had the same thoughts as you. It’s was done to Bonds a time or two back in the day. How about instead of a center cut piece of cheese maybe Benoit could have thrown a 55 foot vulcan changeup to the backstop.?? Then with the score 5-2 and first base open you walk Ortiz and take your chances with Carp. I had flashbacks to the one Ortiz hit off Valverde in 2010 though we had a five run lead that time and we won the game. Yes, as it played out we cheered up the announcers. Did you see the reporters were afraid to ask Jim any real questions about the game??

At least we have the certainty of seeing AJ and Torii batting 1-2 on Tuesday.
That really seems to be working JL. AJ is striking out over .500 and Torii is much better just whiffing 1/3 of the time.
Together they are hitting .111 this post season.
Don’t change anything.

I actually thought that they activated Coke to pitch to Ortiz.

With all the credit that has gone to Ortiz, the guy that made Boston believe is Dustin Pedroia. The guy is a fighter and one of the clutchest players you’ll ever see.
Smyly being too cute with Ellsbury really hurt the cause.
JL knows Benoit doesn’t do 4 out innings well.
Yet he asked him to again.
Porcello has to be pretty sick of pitching with drawn in infields.
I said before we played Oakland that we needed a saviour to be born in the bullpen.
Looks like it is up to Alvarez now.

What’s all that oily stuff in Clay Buchholz hair?
Am I the only one that noticed this?
Clays hair was dripping with an oily substance last night.
Every 3rd batter or so, he’d aggressively run his pitching hand thru the oily hair – then throw a pitch – on a couple of occasions – the pitch went high – followed by Clay forcefully wiping (rubbing) his hand on his trousers to remove the substance. How could this not be noticed by the Umps?

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