Royals 1 Tigers 0

This was a tough loss to take but no that surprising.  Both Fister and Santana pitched like aces but the “top rated” Tigers offense could not produce a single run.

I understand that Santana has had a good season and pitched well tonight but with the money the Tigers have invested in their offense it is not unreasonable to expect better.

This game has it’s share of leather flashin.  Royals’ short stop Alcides Escobar made several nice plays.  Torii Hunter threw a seed from right field to gun down Chris Getz trying to take third on a fly ball in the top of the 8th.  Miguel Cabrera and Alex Avila teamed up to cut down Eric Hosmer trying to score from third and a ground ball in the first.  And the play of the game was a relay from Alex Gordon to Alcides Escobar to Salvador Perez to cut down Prince Fielder at the plate to end the game.

Objectively speaking this was a really well played game.  The only problem is that the Tigers offense couldn’t come up with a single run.  This seems to be the story of the last two seasons, no consistency on offense.  They score a lot of runs one game then go into hibernation for a week. It is very frustrating and sometimes painful to watch.

There are two plays in particular I’d like to address.

  1. In the bottom of the sixth Iggy led off with a bunt single.  At this point it was obvious runs were going to be at a premium.  I was hoping the Tigers would give Iggy the green light to try to swipe second.  I’m not big on bunting a guy over from first to second but I am a fan of the stolen base.  Instead, Jackson followed with a fielders choice then Hunter and Cabrera flew out to end the inning.  If Iggy could have stolen second he could have gone to third on Jackson’s ground ball and scored on Hunters fly out.  Instead the Tigers settled for nothing.  I understand speed is not the Tigers game but Iggy does bring this dimension to the team.  This would have been the perfect time to try something new instead of just going to the plate and taking your hacks against a pitcher that’s been dominating you.  I could have lived with Iggy getting thrown out at second.  But I can’t live with doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
  2. In the bottom of the 8th Miggy came to the plate following a Hunter double.  This put Hunter a second with two out.  Cabrera then ended the inning with a ground out to second base on the first pitch.  I know it is hard to complain about Miggy but he has been horrible the last few weeks and I’m not sure it is all injury related.

On the bright side Fister did pick off Emilio Bonifacio at first base in the top of the third inning.  With pick offs and runners thrown out at second the Tigers seem to be making strides at slowing down the opposing team’s running game.  Now if they could manufacture a run or two of their own they might have something.  Still with this lineup they really have no excuse for being shut out ever, let alone, 11 times this season.

Let’s see if Max can get is 20th win of the season in the rubber game tomorrow.

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

Tigers Bats Still On Break

The Tigers lost 3-1 in Kansas City tonight and could only muster 3 base runners.

Royals pitcher Ervin Santana pitched 7 and a 1/3 allowing two hits, 1 walk and 0 runs.

Tigers starter Anibal Sanchez was wild but pitched well.  Sanchez pitched 6 innings allowing only 1 run on 2 hits.  He struck out 3 but walked 5.  It seemed like he was in trouble most of the game but managed to get out of jams.

If there was anything to like about this game, Phil Coke went 2/3 of an inning allowing a hit and striking out 1 and Bruce Rondon pitched an inning and a third with 1 strike out.

This was the seventh time the Tigers have been shut out this season.

Kansas City center fielder, Lorenzo Cain, made about 4 good catches in deep center but that was about all the Tigers did to threaten.  Torii Huner flied to center to end the game leaving Miguel Cabrera on deck.  It would have been nice to see the big man come to the plate in the top of the 9th with a chance to do some damage abut Royals’ closer Greg Holland was too good.

Let’s hope JV has a good outing tomorrow and the Tigers start hitting.  This was not how I was hoping the second half would start.

Here’s a few thoughts on the Tiger second half:

  1. Fielder will start to hit and raise his average to over .280
  2. Justin Verlander will return to form
  3. Phil Coke will pitch the way he did at the end of last season. (I just can’t give up on Coke yet.  I’m biased because I’m like him but I have faith in him.)
  4. Bruce Rondon will shore up the bullpen
  5. The Tigers will win the World Series, ending a 29 year drought, by beating the Cardinals in 6 games.

This is my story and I’m sticking to it?  Or at least until they start makin’ me mad again.  🙂

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