The Tigers beat the Mets tonight, 6-1, a Citifield.
With the game tied 1-1, the Tigers exploded for four runs in the second for a 5-1 lead. As usual, Doug Fister, put up zeroes and shut the Mets out, with help from his friends in the pen.
The big blast in the second inning, came off the bat of the Mighty Miggy. With two on and two out Miggy took the first pitch from Daisuke Matsuzaka and sent it over the left field wall for his 41st of the season. Torii Hunter hit a solo shot in the first to get the Tigers started and AJax, Austin Jackson, capped off the scoring with a solo home run in the 7th.
This was the first start for Daisuke Matsuzaka in the big leagues in over a year and other than the second inning, I thought he pitched pretty well. He gave the Mets 5 innings, allowed 5 earned runs on 6 hits. He struck out 4 and walked 1. If he could have avoided the long ball, his line would look a lot better. If I were a Mets fan, I would be fairly happy with what Daisuke gave them.
For the Tigers, Fister, was aces. But I think the important thing today was the pitching of Drew Smyly. Smyly relieved Fister with one out in the 7th and inherited runners on 1st and 2nd. Smyly got Eric Young Jr. on strikes and got Daniel Murphy to fly out to right to end the threat. This was big because I thought Smyly struggled, just a bit, in his last few outings but looked impressive today.
Victor Martinez started at catcher tonight for the first time in two years or so and looked pretty good. I’m not sure what I was expecting but Victor didn’t look broken down at all. He actually looks like he’s feeling pretty well. In fact, in the first inning, on the play that the Mets scored their only run, Victor made a nice play at the plate. Don Kelly made a great throw from left field, and Victor received the ball well and did a good job of blocking the plate. Although, the runner was safe, it was a solid play on both ends by DK and Victor and not one I would expect from an ailing catcher.
The Tigers got some bad news regarding Alex Avila today. Apparently, he’s been playing in Toledo and has complained of headaches. Concussions are tricky things and I hope this doesn’t linger. That being said, I think Alex has looked broken down and beaten up since the end of the 2011 season and I think his declining offensive production is directly related to his ailing body. While I hope his concussion problems get solved I think an extended period of rest would the be best for his career in the long term. I think Alex is so beaten up that it will take more than a few months for him to recover. If Victor feels ok, perhaps the Tigers should consider making Pena the starter, let Martinez spell him once a week or so, and just let Alex rest. While I like Alex and wish nothing but the best for him, I think a six months to a year off would do the trick for him. He needs to get healthy not only for the Tigers long term, but for himself.
Scherzer v Harvey tomorrow afternoon.
“God, I love baseball.” – Roy Hobbs | The Natural