Tonight’s game was a battle of aces that lived up to its billing. Lester and Scherzer both pitched well with Lester and the Red Sox evening the series courtesy of their 2-1 victory.
Mike Napoli didn’t start tonight but he did pinch hit in the 8th inning against Luke Putkonen. I would have loved for Luke to have drilled that shit bird but it wasn’t the time. The score was 2-1 with runners on first and second and only 1 out. It was more important to prevent the Sox from extending their lead than evening the score with Crapoli.
Speaking of Putkonen, he has been very impressive and may be pitching himself onto the post season roster. He came in last Thursday and stopped the bleeding against Oakland which eventually allowed the Tigers to rally late and save the last game of the series.
Putkonen came in again today in a pressure situation. Scherzer came out to pitch the 8th but didn’t retire either batter he faced. He left the game with runners at first and second and nobody out. Coke came in and got David Ortiz to fly out. Putkonen then relieved Coke. With runners at first and second and one out he gave up a single to Crapoli to load the bases. He then got Jonny Gomes to pop out and Stephen Drew to ground out, both to Iggy, to end the inning.
What does all of this mean?
First, Putkonen and Coke are making cases for spots on the post season roster.
Second, the burden falls on Ricky tomorrow to win the rubber game and hold Crapoli accountable for his Dave Rozema karate kick on Iggy during Monday’s game. It seems like these things fall on Porcello a lot. As has been documented here at Flashin Leather, Ricky hit Youkilis in August of 2009, then beat him into a conniption when he rushed the mound. Then earlier this year in Tampa Bay, after The Crooked Hat threw at Miggy’s head the night before, Ricky lit Zobrists’ rib cage up to defend the MVP the following game.
Third, and this is the most important take away from tonight’s game, Tommy “The Windmill” Brookens is the worst third base coach in baseball history. He always manages to get the call exactly wrong. Today, The Windmill got Brayan Pena thrown out at the plate in the second inning. With Pena on first and Infante on third, Iggy doubled, scoring Infante easily. Brookens, then, mistook the 5’9″ 230 lbs Pena for Rickey Henderson and sent him home. Although the play was considerably closer than most of The Windmill’s sends, Pena was still out by 30 feet.
I love Tommy but not as the third base coach. The Tigers need Geno back at 3rd. Let Tommy move to first or to the bench.
It would be nice to come out of Boston with Napoli’s ribs bruised and a series win.
“God I love baseball.” -Roy Hobbs | The Natural