photo illustration by Samara Pearlstein
Later, Gopher Dome! We hate you and are not at all sorry to leave you.
On a more sincere note: wins! Two wins in a row, even. It seems unbelievable but it is Real Actual Fact!
Saturday was a stressful win, although it only really got stressful at the very end. Verlander’s day was just about the definition of ‘eh’: 5.2 innings, 4 runs on 8 hits and 4 walks with 4 Ks. Not up to his former standards and not a quality start, but decidedly better than his last outing, so we’ll call it a wash. It was enough to keep the Tigers in the game, anyways.
Magglio went absolutely bat-guano crazy, falling just a single short of the cycle, with his double and triple coming off of Baker and his homer off of Guerrier. It’s so weird to think that Magglio has not been able to help the team more than he has this season… he is batting .319, after all. But his OPS is only .874. Compare that to last season, where his OPS was (an admittedly astronomical) 1.029…
The stress came in the form of Fernando Rodney, of course, who pitched the 9th inning and shaved at least half a year off of all our lives. Cats forbid we have a nice, easily-closed-out game. No, first we have to LOAD THE FREAKING BASES, and only then can we close the game. Is Fernando Rodney the new Todd Jones? Rollercoaster Rodney? He handled Sunday’s final inning just fine, so maybe he’s learning.
Sunday! Yes, that second win! Chris Lambert’s VERY FIRST EVER Major League win! Awwwwww yay. It is basically meaningless, but I’m happy we were able to get at least one for the poor kid. He may as well get something positive out of the horrible situations we keep forcing him to experience. I didn’t actually see most of his day, because I was watching the Lions game. Why? Because I am an idiot and a masochist, apparently. Let’s not talk about it. More baseball.
Howzabout our title image dude up there, Dusty Ryan? This was his first ever Major League start (awww, yay) and he hit his first ever Major League home run (awww, extra yay!). It was particularly fun watching him play opposite Joe Mauer – it was like The Oversized Catcher Extravaganza out there. There were a couple of stolen bases against him, but Lambert is not exactly Justin Verlander when it comes to his move, so, whatever.
The Farns was throwing up around 99-100 today. I think it’s the first time I’ve seen him topping out his velocity since he’s been back with us. Not sure what that’s all about.
The Race to .500!
With these two wins, the Tigers now need 12 wins to reach the promised land, and we still have 7 losses left to spare. The joys of .500 still seem so very far away.
We’re back home in Detroit for Monday’s game, takin’ on the A’s at 7:05 pm EDT. Zach Miner vs. Gio Gonzalez. This is a rare instance where the opposing pitcher is actually much worse (on paper) than the Tigers starter for the day, so it would be nice to take full advantage of that… but Gio’s got the dread Small Sample Size hanging over his head, so who knows, he could surprise and torment us, as has happened so many times this season. Ho hum. Go Tigers!