John Lowe – Speed

Hat Tip to Nebraska for pointing this article out.

It appears John Lowe of the Freep dot com has come to the same conclusion readers of this blog have come to.  Namely, the biggest problem the Tigers have is their inability to throw out runners.

On a night when the Tigers set a team record for home runs allowed in a game with eight, the significant question that emerged nonetheless dealt not with power, but with speed:

If there is a Tigers-Red Sox playoff series next month, could the Tigers lose because of their inability to prevent stolen bases?

Ominously, that inability is what allowed the East-leading Red Sox to score the run that put them ahead to stay in a 20-4 thumping of the Central-leading Tigers on Wednesday night at Fenway Park.

Keep reading here.

The part of the Tigers’ inability to throw runners out that baffles me is that they don’t have ANYBODY that can shut down the running game.  Can all the blame go to the pitching staff?  Are they that bad at holding runners close?  It seems to me that the catchers have to start sharing the blame. Avila, Holaday, Pena, none of them can throw anybody out.

Perhaps speed defense should have been addressed at the trade deadline.

“God I love baseball.” -Roy Hobbs | The Natural

9 thoughts on “John Lowe – Speed

  1. Actually we have two starters who do a good job of holding runners on. JV for everything he has been has a DOA pick off move (see his last start) and Max varies his time to plate well………so yea your last line…well the king has no clothes.

    • Nebraska,
      You know this pangs me to say this, but the Tigers need a starting catcher. Pena is ok for a backup, he’s hit a lot better than I expected, but defensively, he’s not good.

      I understand that A Squared Money is good at calling pitches, but that seems to be about it. He can’t hit and he can’t throw anybody out. Unfortunately, I think he’s aged prematurely. He does look like a broken down tractor stuck in the mud. He can’t hit, he can’t run and well, you know the rest of the story.

  2. Lets start throwing some blame at that senile, mumbling person they call a manager. He can kiss my ass – I don’t care how good he is in the clubhouse. Taking V-mart out for a pinch runner two games ago in a 1 run game?!?! What if we tied it up? U gonna go into extra innings with your hottest hitter on the bench? I haven’t liked Leyland since day 1. There are other reasons but sick of typing…

    • I’m willing to throw blame anywhere in the organization. They are all culpable.
      what about when mush mouth took Cabrera out for a defensive replacement in Cleveland and the game ended up going 12 innings.

  3. It’s ALL on the catchers, and a small amount on the pitchers because of how slow or quick they are to home plate.

    This is by no means scientific, but in my hardball league we plan our base stealing strategy on who the opposing catcher is. I’m not a great base stealer by any stretch, but I run depending on the throwing arm of the catcher. I don’t take big leads or get good jumps, but I’ll pick on certain catchers.

    The Tigers absolutely suck in this area of the game, and it WILL cost them dearly in the playoffs if they don’t address this. It’s obviously too late to find a suitable arm, but they need to find some sort of strategy to limit the opposing running game. As things are right now teams are fearless in running on us, and every playoff team has great base stealers. From what I heard the other day we haven’t caught anyone stealing since Aug 6th. That isn’t very good!

  4. Well we all know how hard it is to steal on our left handed starter (ok never mind) So Sark you are spot on…… what tools do we have to use? What can we control? If you read the Tigers web page right now the Tigers catchers are working on that. In the next month well we should learn to pitch out, vary our times to the plate and remember that Iggy & Omar can catch the ball. Other than steal signs…..that’s all I got.

    • Well it’s ground hog day all over again………..go to the Free Press sports section and read the John Lowe article Can the Tigers slow down the running Royals? It also includes some interesting info on not so Amazing Al….this guy reads this blog!

      • The numbers do tell the story for both of these narratives. The Amazing Al and the running game have been abominations. And then numbers tell the story.

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