Tigers lick wounds on way out of Cleveland

The quotes were short and sweet in the Tigers clubhouse as they left Cleveland with their second three-game series sweep to the Indians in as many weeks, this one more humbling than the last. Players ate quickly, packed even quicker and readied for the short trip home.

The flight back to Detroit is quicker than a morning commute. But after six games, the gap between Detroit and Cleveland feels wider than Lake Erie, even as they sit next to each other in the AL Central standings, both a game over .500.

“They outplayed us. Simple as that,” Brad Ausmus said. “They outpitched us. They outhit us. They outdefended us. Period. They were the better baseball team out there. They’ve been the better baseball team all six games that they’ve played against us.”

Or, as Ausmus put it more succinctly, “Quite frankly, they kind of kicked our asses all six games.”

Or, as Victor Martinez put it even more succinctly, “We got beat. Move on. It’s that simple.”

For a team that has had its way with Cleveland for the last five years, even last season, it’s a huge reversal. The Tigers were 37-19 against the Indians over the previous three seasons, including 11-7 last year. That said, they didn’t want to dwell on it.

“Tomorrow is a new day,” Ian Kinsler said, “so as far as next series and the team that’s coming to Detroit, this is something that we forget quickly. But next time we play Cleveland, we understand that they’ve won six in a row on us. I think everybody in here knows that. So whatever you need to do to get ready to play those guys the next time we face them, then guys are going to be ready to play.

“We were playing good baseball. We had Oakland coming to town and we played them tough, and then obviously in Minnesota we played really good baseball. Something with Cleveland right now. Baseball’s weird that way. Obviously it never feels good to be swept, but it’s a long season. We have 12 more games against them or whatever. There’s more matches to come. There’s more times when we face this team. But it never feels good to be swept.”

There was a sense among some players that the “something” was momentum and confidence. The Tigers had their chances to take early leads Wednesday and Thursday and couldn’t do it. Their at-bats Thursday with runners in scoring position weren’t good. On Thursday, they had solidly struck balls from Victor Martinez and Justin Upton in the first inning with a chance to plate a run, both balls caught.

“It is what it is,” Martinez said. “We had opportunities. We didn’t get the best out of it. Everything they hit seemed like they found holes. We got some good hard-hit balls with men in scoring position right at somebody. You can’t control that. We got beat and we move on, start a new series.”

Said Jarrod Saltalamacchia: “They’re just getting big hits right now. That’s the name of the game. They’ve got guys in that lineup that can hit, and so do we. It’s just a matter of timely hitting, getting in the right situation and delivering. They’ve been able to do that, and we haven’t. Next time, hopefully we can turn that around.”

They’ll have to wait a while for that. The Tigers and Indians don’t play each other again until the final weekend of June, a three-game series at Comerica Park. They meet again the week before the All-Star break in Cleveland.

Those games could have a big impact on how both teams perceive each other heading into the weeks leading up to the trade deadline.

“We want to beat these guys, especially in our division,” Saltalamacchia said. “But we still have our head above water. Them beating us six out of six, that adds a little fuel. I expect us to be a different team when we come to play them, and I expect them to be a different team. That’s the way it goes.”

71 Comments

Miguel leads the team in walks and his OBP is a pretty good for others, 345. His K rate while bad for him is still better than the League average
16th in hard hit rate

The Tribe has a better rotation and a pretty good defense against a one man rotation with questionable defense. No surprises there

Sorry, but they were 11-7 last season

Fixed. Thanks for catching that quickly.

Put the series with the tribe on the back burner . Move on hoping for wins .

Last week, it looked like the Starters and BP would be at least league average.The last 3 games raise doubts again.about the Starters, who are 13th in the AL with a 4.90 ERA as things stand.Their WHIP is 14th at 1.55.

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I think this team can be a playoff team if things go its way. But, I think we are probably a .500 team until some of the contracts expire for Verlander, Sanchez, and Pelfry and we can replace them with talented young guys that are ready for the show.

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Classic one Rich, “hey skip”. Why don’t you sit Miggy and see if that fires him up. Speaking of spark, I miss Sparky. This team is not crap. Go Tigers!

Aviles will allow struggling JD to recover:
.191 .250 .298 .548
Thanks to Birdman , only him can cover the OF is needed

Schierholtz is better than nothing. the lack of space in the 40 roster is problem but:
JWagnerBlade ‏
“Right now, in my opinion, [Maybin’s] not well enough to throw from OF. … I don’t want to rush it & have a setback.” ~McClendon

Since they don’t like Bernard for some reason

Nothing like playing the tiger’s to get your offense going.
.
Jeez

Something has to give. Both teams are on 3 game losing streaks.

The play by Gose on Moreland’s ball showed his Gold Glove potential. At the same time, Aviles showed exactly what he cannot do in the outfield.

well, he got that

I have to give it to Aviles for his fine running catch in RF.

Wagner about ;
Norris in 2.1 IP:
19 batters (10 1st-pitch strike)
77 pitches, 48 strikes (15 swings)
5 3-ball counts (4 BB)
8 H (0 HR)
7 ER, 5

Licking wounds hasn’t helped so far.

I see at least a 9 game losing streak in our future…..the only thing which might make it 8 is Zimmerman next Wednesday.

Hamels is a Cy Young caliber pitcher

Of course he is…….but between the crappy pitching and the dead offense (even against non Cy Young caliber pitchers) and the teams coming up in don’t see any wins.

Same record as the admired KC.

The second worst BP is coming up in the 8th

As expected from the team that gave us Nathan, Soria and Feliz

Another struggling team offensively beating up the tiger’s. Seems fitting like I said I don’t think Pelfry or Verlander will pitch well enough to beat the Rangers and the Nationals are actually a good team with very good pitching and hitting. Yep a 9 game losing streak is very very likely.

Yep it is likely

Is there a record for number of players hitting below the Mendoza line???
Heck, keeping even above 100 is a challenge for some. Surely can’t continue the whole season…

This is the club I am worried about. The one that inexplicably can go from playing decent baseball to uninspired, dare I say, even, “poor” baseball. And it happens in a heartbeat.
All of a sudden nobody can hit. Starters can’t stay out of trouble. bottom of the order gets worse.
Miggy is losing his superiority. He is becoming almost complacent. He is not leading by example and the rest of his mates still psychologically expect him to. The guys have to move on and let age and weight do what it does to Miggy. They may have to learn to pick HIM up now that Father Time is having his way with him. This may sound harsh but it is evident. No amount of or creative manipulation of statistics will convince me otherwise. He was the heart and soul of the team and it is unfair to expect he will always be. The other guys have find a way to collectively embrace each other and make this a team in the true sense of the word. I don’t see it right now at all.
I am not suggesting Miggy is at fault.
From what I am seeing, Mike Aviles is probably a 2 million dollar placeholder for Jacoby Jones.
I also see Gose being sent down for regular playing time where he isn’t hurting the Tigers directly.
Iggy is starting to show signs of “attitude” again.
Too many weak ground balls to short from our RHB.
Daniel Norris is getting pummeled in AAA. Remember when we thought he was a steal and considered him to be someone capable of replacing Price all on his own?
Where do sluggers like Moya and Stewart go to play MLB?
Will Saltalamacchia regain a glimpse of the power stroke he surprised everyone with early this year? I doubt it. He will have trouble hitting his weight.
There two guys on this team team that are playing all around good ball. Casty and Ian. There is ONLY one guy playing EXCELLENT ball–that is IAN.

Well said and accurate . Something has to light a fire under them and soon.

It won’t be this manager

Victor was the player of the week while Kinsler is hitting 091 this week, 200 over last 15

If Moya the SO machine gets a spot, it wont be Victor’s spot. Barring an injury

The Tigers are above Texas in avg and OPS. Texas is 2 games above 500

Nothing in all of sports is more frustrating than a .500 team.

Zimmermann and my man Wilson both prove they’re human after all. Z-Man pitched well enough to win every time. This joke of a lineup is really getting old. Where have you gone Miggie? Never thought you would fade away like you have. Maybe it’s all a big dream. Hamels is a tremendous talent, but our offense should get more than 2 hits. Agree that we are potentially looking at a serious losing streak unless dramatic changes occur, starting tomorrow:
1. I never realized how good Ian was, until I saw him play on a regular basis.
2. The Aviles catch in RF. Only thing he did to contribute.
3. We call Z’s outing a bad one; actually was a solid performance; you couldn’t ask for more from a starter.
No kudos. I say Pelfry gets into the fourth tomorrow before being knocked out. Please get Julio back to the five.

Let’s face it…there is no preparedness on this team….Rod Allen seems to know better than the hitters..he kinda knows what pitch coming next…he knows everything.
Don’t the manager prepare hitters for the next series, be it Texas or any team.
This manager is terrible, why is he still there? When you replace the leading
batter with a Romine or an Aviles…is this the best you got?
The pitching still sucks and you have the weakest bench in the league.
all the power in this lineup is supposedly at the top(I mean at the top) Kinsler, Kinsler and kinsler….Miguel is in ga,ga,ga, land, if anyone should be rested,
it’s him.
This team s defeated literally….

When I say playing excellent I mean on both sides of the ball. Ian has done that very well.
Victor is a DH. And the last 4 games he is 3 x 16 (.188) with no XBH or RBIs.

Victor is a nice guy. He is a truly professional hitter.

Well I will be unable to watch today’s game……that’s probably a good thing.

Kinsler 2015 , before ASG:
274 .339 .375 .713
Once the Tigers were out of contention:
325 .347 .495 .842
JD he was hitting 5th or 4th when he had 3 months slump in 2015, ( avg and OBP) . he showed power most of the time. He began hitting with authority by middle June
He is a streaky hitter, far more than Upton. His K rate has been god this year but his career track is different. That why I found weird all the complains against Upton by JD fans. He is what JD could be
McCann in the Minors:
256 .290 .372 .662. How could he become a good hitter overnight?. He is like Avila , an all defense . no stick catcher.
Gose is stubborn. Still playing shallow . Time to send him out of town. He had attitude problems with the Jays and nothing changed. His K rate? 34.7 , Upton 35.6

I recall commenting several times over the last several weeks that the Tigers look like a competitive team and will have to score runs to compensate for questionable pitching. I noted that Baseball Reference, Fangraphs or Baseball Prospectus pegged them at about .500. Well, it’s still early but the Tigers are now 14-14. I hope the rotation stabilizes starting with Pelfrey today, and the Tigers can prove the expectations of the experts were set too low. Pelfrey and Sanchez absolutely have to perform solidly like the #3 and #4 starters they are. JZ and JV should be okay,along with the BP. The #5 starter’s spot has been a question mark since ST and remains one due to various reasons, some of which have been health-related.

And as far as whipping boy Gose goes, the Tigers aren’t floundering because of him. It is our stars who need to perform more consistently and at the level they are compensated.

Gose should be a Mud Hen along with J Upton

Lastly, I have commented several times about Nick over the last couple of years that he is doing his developmental work in the majors instead of in the minors. That development is coming to fruition, but Nick’s distinguishing mark is his bat. My point about Gose is the same. However, his distinguishing mark is his glove.

The blind squirrel

Clueless about the BP

No amount of statistic bending (I showed an example of my own yesterday) can convince me that Ian Kinsler is not the best player on the Tiger team.
As to Gose, again, no amount of of potential, speed glove or whatever can convince me he will be a solid MLB.
As to comparisons between Avila and McCann? I’d take James in a heartbeat. Younger, stronger, faster, better hitter, leadership a
and actually a better catcher.
He will be a dependable .270 hitter with 15 HR potential realizing itself as early as next year.
Pelfrey again showed his vulnerability. Two strike pitches to Beltre were both pounded.
No excuse for that.

Screaming at a teammate is no leadership for me. He was a rookie and had to keep his place. He should try the same with Mad Dog or JD. He would remember what happened to certain Cubs catcher

Brad Ausmus: “We’ve been taking batting practice and losing, so let’s not think about it so much,” he said. “Let’s just go play a baseball game, like in Little League.”
Very philosophical, somehow Brad that seems approach seems appropriate in terms of how they are playing AND how you are managing.

Ugh just got home in time to see Rangers go up 7-5 and to see kinsler get a walk and jd and miguel to ground out weakly. I honestly think this team is worse than last years. Even now the pen has shown some vulnerability.
.
There are a lot of men on this team underperforming and being overpaid. Price and Dickerson where talking on the way home how completely frustrating it is how inconsistent this team is.
.
Again I think we are looking at atleast 9 game losing streak. Just not very enjoyable team to cheer for.

Brad seems like a nice enough guy. But, you can’t replace the whole team. Maybe, try replacing him.

There goes the trusty dependable pen. Getting in line with the rest of the team.
.

They will be above 500 next week by Saturday. They can win on the road

Not against the Nationals they won’t.

I am still waiting for Upton to wake up. He butchered another ball in the field today and has 2 HRS with 8 RBIs and an OPS of.610. By comparison, our resident whipping boy, Gose , has 2 HRs with 7 RBIs and a .666 OPS. And, Gose is working for minimum wage, not $22.125M per year.

Lets all hope J-up starts hitting like he can. That’s is a lot of money to pay for a maybe he can. Or we pray he can.

The Texas broadcasters issued an interesting tidbit about our $16M Man, Pelfrey. He reportedly has not won a game since last August.

For sure. The difference is that you can pretty much count on Upton hitting .270/25/100 by the end of the season–or close to hose figures.
There is no telling what you will get with Gose but I figure more like .240/8/40 if you’re lucky.
And the way he is stealing bases? What’s the point in a regular position?
He is not to blame about the team’s lethargy and record. He is probably doing the best he can.

Upton is here to be a Silver Slugger. Gose is here to cover CF. They have different strengths. And you were close on your stats for Upton. It is more like .271/26/83 based on 162 games per Baseball Reference. I admit I have preached patience waiting for Upton’s eventual .800 OPS, but I’m getting real antsy. So, would you please set his alarm clock and wake him up?

Not exactly thinking 12 rbi for Miggy is enough either

It could be worse, they did not sign Price

Price 6.75 ERA 217 MM
Verlander 6.49 112 MM
6.23 for 16 MM

Pefrey is “embarrassed”. Anybody else getting tired of the self deprecation act by him (and others).

For failure? Not so much. Would prefer successful outings to be the ultimate response.

Had Ausmus gone to the BP after the second runner on,we would not be calling off the season

They’ve got to pitch better. Too often the offense is battling to overcome multi-run deficits. I had the impression that Pelfrey had a little run of success today only because the Texas hitters swing at nearly everything.
Put someone else, even Upton (but not Nick at this point), back in the 2-hole. I don’t see anybody receiving a steady diet of fastballs hitting in front of Miggy anyway. Upton will get hot when he gets hot regardless of where he’s hitting. And some of these big sluggers need to be leaving the yard more often.

Man, this team is killing me slowly. I apologize for being so negative about Big Mike; I said he wouldn’t last the fourth, but he fooled me; He got into the sixth only to be bombed as usual. If he starts 5 games from now, the big brass has conceded the season. No excuses: we gave him a three run lead; maybe the worst signing by the Tigers ever. Julio has died totally at the two. The Pen even unraveled today, save for Verhagen. Great 4 hit game Miggy; how about a three run homer?
1. The Iglesias play in the deep hole.
2. Nick and Ian do their job.
3. Pelfrey actually didn’t walk anybody.
Are we swept again Manana? Leave it to the Tigers to wake up a team’s offense.
Thoroughly disgusting baseball being played by our boys right now.

Tigers lick wounds and open more sores. I watched the game last night since I was working during the day. Some guy with Tiger gear walked in the store and I asked him how they were doing. “Oh, they got this one.” Get home, see the score and almost keel over. I was screaming for Brad to pull Pelfrey before Beltran. He didn’t listen.

I was wondering what that distant sound was………..

We have a saying, ” bad guys are cowards”. Harper fears the wall. They were comparing him to Mickey Mantle and then Shy Guy cost his team the game.
Ken Griffey he is not
The lost both games, but so far the Nats have not impressed me.

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