Cabrera: We play hard, but we have to play better

One prominent presence on this team that has been a relatively quiet voice belongs to Miguel Cabrera, who has largely kept out of interviews since the All-Star break while he and his team have tried to get going. With the struggles continuing Sunday with a loss to Seattle, Cabrera spoke with a small group of reporters.

His message was largely a push to action. Like several others on the team, he pointed out that the effort is there. It’s not a matter of playing hard, he said. It’s a matter of playing well, and they’re going to have several chances to play well against teams that will make a difference.

“Some days we play good defense and then we don’t hit. Some days we hit good and don’t play good defense,” he said. “If we want to win, we have to stick together, play defense, hit and pitch at the same time. I think we still have a good shot because we still have a lot of games against Kansas City and Cleveland, against our division. When we play against our division, we play good.

“What we can do is go out there and play hard. People see we play hard. We play hard, but I think we have to do better. That’s what I want to say. I say we have to play better.”

Once the Tigers play three games this coming week at Tampa Bay, they’ll have just six games left outside of their division, all at home. They’ll host the Yankees for a quick three-game homestand Aug. 26-28, then welcome the Giants for three games Sept. 5-7. They’ll have six games against the Royals in September, and seven against Cleveland.

“If we want to win the division, if we’re going to be in the playoffs, we have to play better,” he said. “We have to win series. We have to step up and do our jobs. Do our jobs and I think we’re going to be OK.”

Asked if they’re feeling the pressure of a division race, he agreed.

“That’s why you see when we have men in scoring position, we swing at a bad pitch, because we want to make something happen,” he said. “When you say it’s a lot of pressure, yes, it’s a lot of pressure because two or three weeks [ago] we lead the division by six, seven games. Right now we’re behind. But you know what, we’re a good team. We’re going to come from behind and we’re going to get the lead again. But what we have to control is go out there and play better, play hard, make something happen.”

That includes himself. And not surprisingly, he didn’t want to get into his health. His non-answer, however, didn’t deny that he’s dealing with issues.

“You guys know me for seven years. I don’t like to talk about my injuries or whatever I’ve got in my body right now,” he said. “The only thing I can say is I’m going to be out there every day and try to play hard. It doesn’t matter what I have. I try to play my best. Hopefully I can do my job and hopefully I can help my team to win more games and hopefully we can win the division.”

When asked about his swing, he said he feels better about it, and he’ll feel better if he can hit for more home runs. But he also acknowledged that in trying to swing big, he has gotten out of his strike zone, something he’s trying to reverse.

“I try to expand my zone. I try to make something happen. That’s a big mistake you can do as a hitter,” he said. “So right now, I have to feel more comfortable with what I’m doing at home plate and try to shorten my strike zone and try to swing at strikes.”

When asked about the fan reception lately, he admitted it can be a tough when people expect them to run away with the division and they haven’t. But he also stated the obvious: If you win, everything’s good.

“Detroit is a sports city. They come every day to support us and when we don’t do our job, they express it, they boo us,” he said. “I’ve been playing in Detroit for seven years and seen this or that, but we’ve got to control that. We have to get out there and play better and win games. If we win games, they’re going to be OK. …

“They don’t like the way we play right now. I understand that because we don’t play good right now. Like I said before, we have to do our jobs. We have to go out there and play better, play good defense, hit and pitch. We have great starters, great pitchers and offense. We have to get together. … We need everybody here on our team to do everything we can do best to do our job. I think if we control that, the fans are going to be happy.”

42 Comments

On the minus side, the Tigers are 39-44 since May 16. That’s over half a season and that, more than the standings, is cause for some alarm.
On the plus side, they should be getting Sanchez and Soria back. While they don’t swing the bats, that should provide a boost for the entire club.
It seems later than it is, but this probably isn’t over until they play the six games with KC. At this point, I’m just looking for a better and cleaner brand of baseball.
The crazy thing is, they could stagger into the postseason, get hot, win the WS, and this team would be venerated and adored for many reunions to come. Don’t laugh. Looking at all the teams in baseball this year, the entire thing is up for grabs.

The Tigers need to go out and have FUN like kids and play ball

Here are some insightful quotes I like… Lemme know if you like them:

“Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited, whereas imagination embraces the entire world, stimulating progress, giving birth to development.”

“I, at any rate, am convinced that He (God) does not throw dice.”

“The significant thing is not to stop questioning; curiosity has its own reason for existing.”

“Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.”

“Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I’m not sure about the universe.”

“Falling in love is not at all the most dumb thing that people do — but gravitation cannot be held responsible for it.”

“The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious.

“Anyone who hasn’t made a mistake has never tried anythiong new.”

“Strive not to become a man of success, but rather try to become a man of value”

“man who go to bed with itchy butt, great morning with sticky fingers” – some indian chief

*greet

Someone has to lead the Tigers out of the darkness. That someone is Ian Kinsler. He has the ability, he has the experience and he has the opportunity.
If he would just level out his swing and trying to pull everything down the line.
His best struck balls are all 20 feet foul.

you can tell Miggy is not comfortable being the spokesperson for the team – he would rather come in , have fun, do his work. I am ok with that, but being the man with the big contract also means you have to show some outward leadership to the media, so I applaud him for doing that. It is am uncomfortable part of the job, and guys like Don Kelly and Suarez don’t have to do it, Miggy and Victor and JV have to. I say forget what happened the last few weeks and start new this week and get back on track.

good comment

This made me forget about the Tigers for just a few minutes:

http://detroit.cbslocal.com/2014/08/18/minor-league-manager-with-an-epic-meltdown-video/

This is from Gabe Kapler, speaking about Nick Castellanos (“Kid Linea”):
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“A line drive won’t necessarily be the hardest balls in play, but they do end up being hits at a lofty 75% clip,” according to sportingcharts.com.

In short, line-drive percentage matters. Kid Linea leads the American League as a rookie at 27.3 percent. Of course, this is a small sample size. Those players who have put up top numbers year after year have been amply rewarded by their teams. Since 2010, MLB’s three leaders in line-drive percentage are Freddie Freeman, Joey Votto and Joe Mauer. Those guys are really, really rich.

Okay, I dare you to watch this and not get a laugh.
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It’s on TV Rich. A new gig for Rod.

that’s great!

hahhhhahaha

Dare undertaken an sorry, (maybe my sense of humour is uncultivated), it didn’t get a chuckle out of me. The only thing Rod has ever done that has made me laugh is the incident in Japan.
I honestly don’t know how Mario puts up with him.

I bet the people in Toledo are calling Buck Farmer the “other name” after his debut tonight. Line: 0.1P, 5H, 8R, 7ER, 3BB, 0SO. 189.00 ERA.

“Woof, woof, woof”. (The sound of David Dombrowski barking up the wrong tree)

Kc winning yet again. Argh

KC 20-5 going into tonight. They’re playing over their heads, but Detroit can’t fall too far behind.

Well I said it in the winter and I’ll say it again. While gaining some offense at 2nd and in left we lost alot at 3rd and short. 1st is about even because Miggy is putting up similar numbers at this point to what Fielder did last year. (Miguel is quite a bit down from last year and in fact has only 5 rbi’s this month) pretty bad outlook right now.

I think the season long injuries to Iglesias, Cabrera, and Verlander have been the chief reason for not winning more games so far this year.

mcCann and Travis hitting .300.
Moya over .270 with 30+ homers/
Bring them up and give them a dose of the bigs.
McCann could actually get some meaningful playing time.
Moya less, but a big LHB might help somewhat.

Memo to Dave D:
Doug Fister—12 W 3 L; 2.20 ERA; 1.05 WHIP

OOPS

John Wagner reports Dirks suffered another hamstring injury while running the bases for the Triple-A Mud Hens Sunday. The injury came in the third inning and the outfielder had to leave the game.

He’s a mess

I think the chief reason is the fact that year to date they’ve scored approximately 100 less runs.

seriously? wow, that is a telling stat. Defense and pitching woes can take a back seat to that!

Remember this?http://beck.mlblogs.com/2013/11/18/joe-nathan-to-mlb-network-radio-i-definitely-love-the-tigers/
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I guess NY wouldn’t shell out enough money. Sure wish they had and then Joe would truly know how decent Tiger fans are.
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Just about every column in Detroit newspapers are saying the same things we all comment on every day: the lack of offense, godawful defense. I do recall earlier in the spring when Torii lost his temper in a game and almost had to be restrained. Of course, he apologized later and commented that he’s got kids and can’t act that way. The Tigers went on a tear after that incident.

And, here’s another thing I want to call out. Rajai Davis always takes responsibility for his flubs. “I’m a MLB player, I have to make that play.” “No”, I can’t use my injured thumb as an excuse. Doug Fister always admitted his mistakes in the post game interviews. And, look where that got him. “I let the team down.” Some of these “macho” men don’t like or won’t admit to their mistakes. You win as a team, and you lose as a team. No excuses.

I forgot to add Dirks and Rondon to that injury list.
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I’ve watched Fister pitch plenty this season and he’s doing what he’s always done. Players get traded for many reasons, some unknown to fans and media. It’s not that they traded him; it’s that they got nothing in return. The Fister deal will go down as one of, or maybe the worst in Tigers history.

Rich you are right and I don’t think the fans will forget it . Fister is missed in the Tigerss rotation . The trade made no sense then nor does it now.

It is not always how many runs you score but how many you give up. KC has the best bullpen, we have the worst. We have acquired many pieces but they are just not fitting into the jigsaw puzzle.

i for one am not going to cry about not making the playoffs this year. with that said I think we could win it all if we got hot. well see.

Sure. I always said there’s reasons why teams don’t go the postseason every year (not counting the Yankees) and we’re seeing most of them. It’s tougher on the older fans with not as much time left but it is what it is. I always say the story is the regular season. The postseason is like a carnival that comes to town, lights up the sky, and leaves in the night.

hey win or lose I just like listening to the game, particularly while spending time with my family and/or friends. Heck I listen to the games in the offseason or just put them on as background noise while I hang out with others.

Yeah Evan, there is no crying in baseball! Rich, I wonder what they are writing on the Yankees blog?

I don’t know what they’re writing, but I know that there is a LOT of it.

now that i think of it, a shame DD didn’t trade JV to the Yankees this season (e.g. at the deadline) for some bullpen help.

Amen. Bright lights, big city.

So if Verlander can’t return, there’s a possibility of Robbie Ray on Friday and TWO call ups to pitch the Saturday DH? Tell me we’re not the underdogs in this thing!

Oh lord help us

It seems to me that whwn Miggy DHs he doe not perform as well. I know he needs a day off now and then but give him the day off. I wonder what his batting average and RBI production is as A DH. I believe he needs to be involved in the game and having fun VS sitting and waiting to hit on the bench

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