Sunday, June 7, 2009

Jackson Wins the Duel

Photo: Duane Burleson (AP)

I still hate pitching duels, but I’ll certainly take ‘em if the Tigers win. Edwin Jackson was, by all accounts, brilliant (though most of my observations came courtesy of at work). He was certainly efficient. Going nine innings and only throwing 109 pitches is extremely reasonable. I was home in time for the ninth inning, though, and that was pretty sweet.

Today marks the end of the homestand and the rubber match of this series. Rick Porcello struggled in his last start against the Red Sox, but the last time he struggled, he proceeded to win five games in a row. Obviously the Angels have never seen him before. With his tendency to induce ground balls, some of the speedsters might give him trouble by beating out infield singles, but generally the Angels don’t have a real powerful offense outside of Abreu, Guerrero, and Hunter. The Angels counter with lefty Joe Saunders, who is coming off his worst start of the season but generally pitches well on the road and at Comerica Park. Marcus Thames hit two home runs off him in a game last May, and lo and behold, he has been activated and stuck in the 5-spot in the lineup. Jeff Larish was sent down to Toledo to make room for him. Miguel Cabrera’s back in the lineup. The hamstring must be feeling a lot better, because with Larish gone, the only other person who can play first base is Thames, and he’s the DH (though Raburn apparently can play first in an emergency).

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