Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Bring Out the Dramamine

That wasn’t exactly the game you wanted to happen when you have food poisoning (although I can tell you that my stomach was most assuredly empty before the game even started). That whole thing about Max Scherzer doing worse in a second consecutive start against a team seems to be alive and well. All of his pitches seemed to be up. He settled down in the third and fourth innings and looked as though he’d at least be able to eat some innings, but fell apart again in the fifth (and I was totally right about the Twins not missing Joe Mauer at all). Brad Thomas proceeded to let all the inherited runners score, but he did spare the bullpen by finishing the game.

Well, as I said before, the Tigers generally score between three and five runs against Scott Baker, and they did so again, but three runs was not enough in this game. Austin Jackson ended the game a home run shy of the cycle, and continues defying the stat geeks who say his luck will run out soon (oh, and congratulations to him for being named the AL Rookie of the Month for April). As for Target Field, I noticed nothing quirky except for the cardboard backstop providing an intriguingly strong carom back to the catcher on wild pitches.

Let us hope that tonight’s game brings a much happier ending. Dontrelle Willis was very, very good against the Twins in his last start, but can he do it again so soon? I don’t need to rehash his numbers against the Twins, do I? Meanwhile, the Tigers will get their first look at Nick Blackburn this year. Blackburn has given up five earned runs in each of his last three starts, although the Twins won two of those games. He was scheduled to start last Friday, but did not due to a death in the family or something, so he will be pitching on extra rest (He’s a sinkerball pitcher, and I’ve heard that extra rest isn’t always good for that type because it makes them too strong and their sinker doesn’t sink). If memory serves, the Tigers tend to beat him up when they’re at Comerica Park, but don’t do a lot against him in Minneapolis. Maggs and Cabrera have hit him particularly well (.400 for both of them). Inge has not (.214, but he has homered against him). Everyone else in the lineup is either at .250, .273, or has never faced him. Your Mood Music for tonight: It’s National Star Wars Day (so I learned on Facebook), so why not?

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