Friday, July 24, 2009

You're Getting a Lump of Coal

Can we finally be rid of the stupid Christmas in July promotion? At any rate, I think Luke French pitched decently, and probably would’ve had a better line had it not been for a couple errors/defensive mistakes (For some reason, the Tigers haven’t played good defense behind Luke French, although Polanco made a nice play on a line drive that he turned into a double play). Tigers’ pitching as a whole did not walk anybody. Meanwhile, as far as the offense is concerned, well, where’s Pudge when you need him? I mentioned that the Tigers had had their way with Jarrod Washburn in recent years, but I neglected to mention that Pudge (who owns Washburn) provided a lot of the damage. You can’t really point towards failure at scoring opportunities, because there really weren’t that many opportunities (I’m not sure Granderson’s triple counts, because with two outs, you only get one chance to score him). Ironically, through the last turn through the rotation, the only win came on the one night the pitching was kinda crappy.

Now we’re all knotted up at the top of the AL Central with the White Sox coming into town, so this weekend’s series could be very good or very bad. We’ve got a full slate of baseball today with the doubleheader. And the White Sox are coming off of Mark Buerhle’s perfect game (Anyone else not want that to happen?), which means that Hawk Harrelson’s head isn’t even gonna fit into the press box. What I’m kind of astounded by is that Buerhle’s perfect game came against the Rays, who have a good offense anyways and in particular possess speed, speed, and more speed. You’d think one of them would’ve managed a piddly little infield single at some point (especially since Buerhle gets lots of ground balls). At any rate, though, that means we will not have to see him in this series. For Game 1, the Tigers will face Jose Contreras. Contreras is normally a punching bag for the Tigers, but in his first start back from the minors back in June, he absolutely shut them down, which had all of us in fits. However, he proceeded to rattle off several good starts after that, almost halving his ERA in the process, so maybe it was not a fluke. He has not been quite as sharp recently. Justin Verlander was sharp in his last start, but not sharp enough, as the Tigers only scored one run. The White Sox are one of his two “problem” teams, though he got a complete game win against them at U.S. Cellular Field in June, outdueling Jon Danks. Carlos Guillen is back, too, after going 3-for-4 (all singles) in Toledo last night. He did not play the whole game, but the Mud Hens had a 10-run third inning and the Syracuse Chiefs had position players pitching for them for the bulk of the game. Guillen still can’t play the field or bat right-handed, so for now he’ll be a left-handed DH. Josh Anderson has been DFA’d, but I do hope he clears waivers and gets sent to Toledo. He would be a very useful call-up in September as a late-inning pinch-runner. I will try to do a recap of this game before the second game starts.

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