Thursday, September 10, 2009

Now That's Just Flat-Out Getting Outpitched

When you’re trying to study for an exam on antihypertensive agents, this isn’t exactly the type of game you’d like your boys to be putting up. Yes, the offense didn’t do much last night, but they did score five runs the night before and scored plenty of runs in St. Petersburg, so right now you have no idea if this was a one-time yawn or the beginning of a hitting slump. It’s not like they were facing a guy with an earned run average over six. Tejeda had a good ERA and came into the game with off a start in which he shut out the best offense in baseball (the Angels), along with a 13-inning scoreless streak in which he had only given up two hits. The only strange part about that is that during this streak, his command has been very good, something which has not exactly defined him in his career. However, not doing anything against Kyle Farnsworth is just flat-out unacceptable. At this point, though, offense has been up and down, but the pitching has not been good in this series, and that is the more troubling aspect. Tigers pitching has given up 12 runs in this series to a team that (contrary to popular belief) ranks behind them in offense (they also kinda/sorta did this in Oakland, but there was only one game in which the pitching had a real meltdown). Justin Verlander may have only given up the one run, but it took all he had to prevent the Royals from scoring any more. Against a better offense, he may well have given up four or five runs at least. And the bullpen fared worse. It’s not like Seay and Rodney are mop-up guys, either. By the way, Bobby Seay has hit Mitch Maier in both games of this series with the same pitch in the same spot in the same count. That’s consistency for you. And unlike a lot of people online, I understand why Rodney came in to pitch the eighth (he hadn’t pitched in four days), but having him in there in a non-save situation was just asking for trouble. However, you can’t necessarily say that the runs Seay, Rodney, and Fien gave up were “the difference” because had the score remained 1-0 going into the ninth, you know Soria would’ve started the inning, and maybe Avila would not have had a sacrifice fly opportunity (in fact, this is quite likely).

Well, it’ll be up to Jarrod Washburn to salvage today’s game and avoid one really bipolar road trip (The Tigers had one like that last year, too, though; they swept the Yankees at Yankee Stadium, then proceeded to get swept at the Metrodome). He skipped his last start to rest his ailing knee. Hopefully, that’ll improve his pitching. He’s made two (arguably one) good starts as a Tiger, and one of them was against the Royals, where he pitched eight shutout innings against them back at Comerica Park. Meanwhile, the Tigers need to take advantage of the fact that Zack Greinke is NOT starting today. Instead, they’ll face lefty Lenny DiNardo, who has had time in the big leagues but spent the entire year for the Royals at Triple A, where he had a nice earned run average of 3.22 (I believe he also pitched for Team Italy in the WBC). Leyland has already said that Granderson will get the day off, with Raburn in center and Wilkin Ramirez in left. Hopefully, I’ll see some of this game. I have lab right around the time it starts, though. I have heard that the lab only lasts about two hours at the most, though, so I might be able to catch the tail end of the game.

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