Wednesday, April 15, 2009
It seems the steady rainfall we got all day yesterday in Toledo was also happening in Detroit (though I would’ve missed the beginning of the game anyways). I wouldn’t even bother posting about it, except the rainout has resulted in a shuffle of the rotations of both the Tigers and the White Sox and, as such, today’s game actually features both starting pitchers who were originally scheduled to pitch today. So instead of Rick Porcello and John Danks a day later, we’ve got Armando Galarraga against Jose Contreras. Technically, Galarraga HAS faced the White Sox before, but it was in that stupid makeup game they played after the season ended, when we were all so emotionally disconnected from the team that even though I listened to the thing on the radio, it seriously feels like it never happened (indeed, I may not be the only one who feels that way, because a lot of broadcasters, websites, and news stories frequently rattle off his pre-makeup game numbers). He faced one batter, walked him, threw two wild pitches (allowing the tying run to score), got lifted, and eventually took the loss when his runner came around to score after Gary Glover gave up a grand slam to somebody. So technically, he’s 0-1 with an ERA of infinity, but really, I don’t think one batter is a high enough sample size, so for all intents and purposes, the White Sox have never seen him. However, just like with Texas, he’s going to have to EARN this win. He’ll probably have to work very hard to do it. For one thing, Chicago’s offense is hot right now. Second, they seem to kill Tigers pitching no matter who it is. Third, even though Galarraga had that stellar batting average against, he DID give up a lot of home runs, especially to lefties, and that’s basically how the White Sox have dominated the past four years. It is supposed to be warmer today, so hopefully the weather won’t affect him like it did Zach Miner. Now, I assumed that John Danks would start for the White Sox, but apparently Ozzie Guillen has (wisely) decided that he’d be more useful against the Rays, who have more left-handed bats in their lineups, so we are getting Contreras after all. I actually like this, cuz I honestly think the Tigers have a better chance of beating Contreras than Danks. They’ve had success against him recently, and up until Floyd’s wild start on Monday, he had been their least effective starter (“least” being a relative term, as he still gave up only four runs). At the very least, the rainout guarantees that the Tigers will have a winning homestand. And it’d be nice if the guys worked quickly today, cuz I have to be at work at four, and it’s agonizing not knowing the score for five hours (wrong pharmacist is working tonight). By the way, today is the Jackie Robinson game, and it’ll be a little different this time around, as apparently EVERY player, coach, and manager will be wearing the #42. I guess they finally decided the disproportionate representation was starting to look a little awkward (Last year, you had teams like the Tigers who had several players wearing the 42, but you also had the Marlins, whose lone participant was their third base coach).