illustration by Samara Pearlstein
Eh, mixed weekend. Zach Miner was wicked good on Saturday, and Kenny Rogers was wicked bad on Sunday. We took the series, which is something, I guess. Does it even matter anymore? We’re not going to be playing in October. Ehhhh. The Lions season is starting dangerously soon, which is coloring everything a terrible shade of Mauve Malaise for me right now, and this might be affecting my outlook.
Our goal for the season should be .500 or above. That’s pretty much the only thing we can still reasonably shoot for. If you had said before the season began that come August we’d be struggling mightily to stay above the .500 mark, I would have thought you were wearing your crazypants, or you were just a surly Wrong Sox fan with permanent, irrational hate in your heart. Just goes to show: like a stopped clock, even a Wrong Sox fan can be right under special sets of circumstances, like the semi-inexplicable collapse of supposedly good ballplayers.
So, Miner on Saturday. Wicked good. Seven scoreless innings, only three hits, only ONE walk… and it only took him 88 pitches. Call him the anti-Verlander, if you will. In fact I’m not entirely sure why Leyland didn’t send him out there for the 8th inning. Maybe he wanted to take Miner out while he was still doing well, and didn’t think he could be in for much longer without getting into trouble. Just seems weird that we’re willing to run Verlander into the ground every time he picks up a baseball, but Miner isn’t even allowed to get to 90 pitches. The bullpen (Seay and The Farns) did just fine and the game ended uneventfully, so this is all just feckless internet second-guessing, but hey, that’s what we’re here for!
Kenny on Sunday. Wicked ungood. It took him 107 pitches to get through six innings, and he gave up seven runs (although only six were earned). He just didn’t have his stuff out there today, couldn’t hold a lead, couldn’t keep guys off the basepaths, all that usual terrible stuff.
It was one of those extremely annoying games where the Tigers kept pace with the opposing team in terms of hits and walks (10 H, 5 BB for the Tigs; 9 H, 5 BB for the Royals) but lost because a) almost none of the hits were for extra bases, and b) they couldn’t bring the runs home. I know getting guys on base is the first step and all that, but the Tigers this season are just not taking those subsequent steps. This is one of THE most frustrating kinds of baseball to watch. The players are on base, but nothing comes of it, over and over again: it’s like giving someone a slice of delicious cake and yanking it away every time they try to take a bite. You start to hate your own guys for hitting singles.
The image up top there has nothing to do with any of this, but is instead the kind of thing that often comes up when I have to watch an entire series of Royals baseball. I’m pretty sure it’s been mentioned over here before, but just in case you’re not familiar: Sluggerrr, the Royals mascot (extra Rs are their insertion, not mine), is (nominally) a lion. Royals, lion, geddit? And he’s got a crown for the same reason. But, DISTURBINGLY, Sluggerrr is not wearing a crown. Instead, it GROWS OUT OF HIS HEAD LIKE HIS SKULL IS HORRIBLY DEFORMED.
I don’t understand this. I have never understood this, because it would be SO EASY to have a lion WEARING a crown. Why would you opt to make the crown a part of his actual head? Why would you do that?
So, yeah. The little doodle up there is just me trying to work this out in my own mind. What would the skull of this horrific mutant look like? I have to know. These kinds of things can be very distracting.
Tomorrow the Tigers come home to Detroit for a 7:05 pm EDT game against the Cleveland Racist Mascot Caricatures. Arrrrrrmando goes up against Zach Jackson, which confused the hell out of me, because I saw him earlier this season with the Brewers and completely missed his inclusion in the Sabathia trade. I PAY ATTENTION TO THE BASE BALL. Mostly. Go Tigers!