photo illustration by Samara Pearlstein
I’m just going to say off the bat that I was at the Michigan/Appalachian State football game, so while I’m pleased that the Tigers won this game, I’m having trouble right now believing that concepts like “victory” and “good” still exist in the world. Please bear with me in this difficult time.
It’s nice to be able to nibble on Dan Haren, who’s having a pretty good year, especially since the bats have struggled against lesser pitchers of late, depending on how they feel about life, the universe, and everything on that particular day. Polanco had a great day (as usual), and Timo Perez (!!) went 3-for-4 with two runs scored.
The real ‘yay’ batting performance of the day belongs once again to Mr. Curtis Granderson, with his 4 hits in 5 at-bats and his 3 runs scored and his double and his home run. The home run puts him at #19, meaning that he needs just one more homer and 3 more stolen bases to have The Slightly Arbitrary Yet Awesome Foursome: at least 20 home runs, doubles, triples, and stolen bases. He’s been playing right now as well as anyone, and on this team, that’s really saying something.
I mean, how lucky should we feel, as a team, to have a legitimate MVP candidate AND a Slightly Arbitrary Yet Awesome Foursome guy in the same lineup? Pretty lucky.
Verlander built off of his previous start and spun another gem. The only run he gave up was a solo shot to Mike Piazza, which isn’t great (Piazza’s bat is significantly slowed-down in his old age), but also isn’t terrible (power pitchers are gonna give up homers to guys who are used to hitting them every so often).
It is MOST encouraging that his last start wasn’t some kind of hyped-up fluke response to criticism. If he truly is back to Real Verlander form, and if Bondo is finally truly back to Real Bondo form, this could be a turn-around in the staff coming at exactly the right time.
Of course, the Racist Logos are also doing good things at the right time. They’re either very very lucky or very very good. Neither bodes well for us, and it may be time to start looking a whole lot harder at the gap in that wildcard race. And we’ll have to be very very lucky and very very good to get even that.
Lucky and good. Unlike the Wolverines. So you’ll have to excuse me for not writing more effusively about this game, but now I have to go sulk in a disbelieving way for a while longer.