Category Archives: Fernando

the unfortunate return of the Fernandooooooo tiger


Fernandooooooooooooooo!

Oh, I see how it is. I see how it is, and I don’t like it.

Dontrelle had a solid outing. Quality, you know, by definition and all. Eddie Bonine had a solid outing. That was it: the Tigers, for once, only needed two pitchers to get through the game. They only gave up two runs! The Angels got four hits– just four!– over the course of the entire game.

I’m proud of today’s pitchers. Dontrelle wasn’t perfect, and FSND did zoom in on something that might have been a blister on his throwing hand at one point, but he was pitching like a guy determined to hold down his spot in the rotation. AND HE DID. If two runs over six innings isn’t ‘holding down the spot in the rotation’, I don’t know what is. Does he have to throw a complete game shutout every time out? IS THAT WHAT YOU WANT, BATS? Is that it??

I don’t like it when the Rally Monkeys get four hits, the Tigers get NINE hits, and it’s the Tigers who are left scoreless at the end of the day. That’s irksome, ok, I don’t accept it into my life.

The Tigers also took a grand total of ZERO walks on the day, although I’m not sure if you can blame that on the batters or the Rally Monkey pitchers. Probably a bit of both, to be fair to all parties involved.

And of course Fernando would come on in the ninth to close out the game for the Rally Monkeys. Of course! How could it be otherwise? And OF COURSE he would get an easy 1-2-3 save. Ugh.

And a Merry Tigersmas to you all.


illustration by Samara Pearlstein

If you were celebrating today, I hope you had a good one! And if you weren’t, I hope you survived the crazed hordes of holiday shoppers and last-minute-supply-getters who descended on the roads and stores this past week. RotT wishes seasonal peace for you all, and most especially for the retail workers.

Our non-celebrating holiday present? Fernando Rodney has in fact signed with the Rally Monkey Angels. The contract is for two years, approximately $11 million. If you wish to snicker quietly to yourself, you can look back at the fact that Brandon Lyon signed with the Astros for three years, $15 million. There is a logic in here somewhere, but mostly hilarity.

The point is that, regardless of what the Tigers end up doing for a closer, it almost certainly WILL NOT be Fernando anymore. Our long trial is over, friends. New and excitingly awful trials may well await us (in fact they probably do), but at least they will be DIFFERENT trials. That’s… well, that’s something.

Once more for the road:

Paws willing, that will be the last time we have to see the Fernando tiger in these digital pages.

Happy Holidays to us?


photo by Samara Pearlstein

Could it really be? The greatest holiday present of all… Fernando Rodney signing with a team that is not the Tigers. Please let it be so.

The Phillies have shown some interest in Fernando, but talks are not serious. Fear not, Tigers, for all is not lost: the Rally Monkey Angels are in “serious discussions” with Fernando. So saith ESPN.

Of course the Rally Monkeys no longer have the soothing goggles of K-Rod to gaze into, and Brian Fuentes managed to “shake the confidence” of those in charge this season. I wish both sides all the luck in the world on this deal, but I will warn the Rally Monkeys right now that if they do not enjoy closers who grab hold of that confidence and shake the hell out of it, they may not enjoy Fernando. Maybe.

Not that they should let that stop them! This is nothing to do with the fact that every other team that seriously considers Fernando is one more roadblock in the admittedly somewhat unlikely path that leads to Fernando re-signing in Detroit and we want as many of those roadblocks as possible. Don’t be foolish! We just want what’s best for Fernando, and for other teams in the league. Our thoughts are purely altruistic. Always.

Have the Rally Monkeys heard of this totally fake and not at all real “ailment” known as “tendonitis”? No? Excellent.

In other news, the Freep thinks that with Dusty Ryan gone to languish contribute mightily in San Diego, Alex Avila and his Magical Facial Hair are sure to start the season on the big league roster, backing up G-Money.

why more Alex Avila might be a good thing:
–he might actually, really, truly be able to hit for some small amount of power, which would be a nice thing to have off the bench
–he bats lefty
–his youth makes him slightly less likely to physically break down than the usual old-as-hell backup catching type
–dat irrepressible beard
–he can learn from Laird directly, which is probably more valuable than learning from triple-A catchers/coaches
–it will make Assistant GM and proud papa Al Avila happy, which will help the front office to run more smoothly

why more Alex Avila might be a bad thing:
–he is a child, these are the Majors, he was brought straight up from double-A last season
–the league will soon enough have had time to adjust to him
–young impressionable catchers and potentially horrific pitching do not mix well
–dat irrepressible beard
–it will turn Assistant GM and proud papa Al Avila into a distracted, nervous wreck, which will make the front office run less smoothly

Just some Vital Facts to consider.

Winter Meeting rumor mill continues unabated


illustration by Samara Pearlstein

You cats ready for Day Two of this ridiculousness? I’m not sure that I am, but the Winter Meetings don’t care about me. As before, I will update this post over the course of the day, if/as new stuff makes itself known.

–Fernando Rodney and Brandon Lyon both declined arbitration. Not exactly shocking, but it does throw the Tigers’ quest for closing material into sharper, slightly scarier relief (har har).

–The Mets like Edwin but ‘can’t get the pieces to fit’. So far everything out of Indy has pointed towards the Tigers asking for the sun and the moon to move Jackson/Granderson, which is in my opinion both appropriate and mildly comforting. You tell ’em, Dave! Don’t let nobody push you around, y’hear!

Team currently rumored to be linked to Jackson: Mets, Yankees, Diamondbacks (Dodgers, Brewers?).

–FOX sez the Yankees are interested in Granderson even if the 3-team deal falls through. So even without complicated, many-faceted deals, the danger of THE WORST THING remains potent.

–A Yankee executive sez there is ‘traction’ to the Grandy talks. What.

–Well, they’ve done it. Details and reaction(s) above.

–Apparently the Tigers have signed catcher Robinzon Diaz, although whether it’s a major league or minor league deal is not yet clear. Diaz only played in 41 games for the Pirates last season, soooooo…. I dunno. I would say that G-Money shouldn’t worry too much yet, but with the way this day has gone, who the hell knows.

the arbitration ship sails on Placido Polanco

illustration by Samara Pearlstein

Goodbye, goodbye sweet Placido! We shall sorely miss your breathe-right strips and your cold-weather snoods and your little goatee and your giant skull and your grimacey batting faces on these Detroit shores. *sniffle*

Today was of course the deadline for teams to offer arbitration to their arb-eligible players. The Tigers elected to make that offer to Brandon Lyon and Fernando Rodney. They did not make the offer to Adam Everett, Aubrey Huff, Jarrod Washburn, and Polanco.

Polanco was a Type A free agent, which means that if the Tigers had offered him arbitration, other teams would have had to give up a first round draft pick and a supplemental first round pick to sign him. This would have made him less valuable on the open market, because he’s kinda old and teams don’t generally like giving up those early slots. So it was at least somewhat likely that if the Tigers had offered him arb, he would have accepted it, and gotten a snotload of cash on account of his Gold Glove and all that. Sure, it would have only been a one-year deal, and maybe in rosier economic times the Tigers would have done it, but all we’ve heard about this winter has been ZOMG THE MONEY IS GONE, GONE, ALL OF IT GONE– the amount of money Polanco was likely to make in arbitration was apparently a deterrent for the Tigers. He should still be able to get a good contract elsewhere, now that interested teams know they don’t have to give up The Future to snag him.

Fernando and Lyon are both Type B free agents, which would net the Tigs someone else’s first round pick (no supplementals) some random supplemental picks if they’re signed away. Ugh. I guess it wouldn’t be terrible if Lyon accepted… he made $4.25 million last year, which is pretty high for what he did, but there are worse things in life than effective-but-overpaid middle relievers, right? Right.

Fernando made $2.7 million in ’09. I won’t comment on his performance. You all know my feelings there. He may decide to decline arb and feel out free agency anyways. This does raise the question of what in the hell the Tigers are planning to do for a closer if they don’t go with Fernando again. Paws knows I don’t recommend holding your breath and hoping Zumaya stays healthy or sane, and the FA market is not exactly brimming over with scintillatingly brilliant closers at the moment. I guess we’ll see. Mr. Dombrowski’s got a plan, that is what I will keep telling myself.

Everett, Huff, and Washburn are all Type Nothing free agents, so nobody cares about them.

OK, mild lie. Everett’s presumed (although, I guess, not totally guaranteed) departure raises the question, as with Fernando, of what the Tigers are planning there for 2010. Right now the idea for second base seems to involve bringing up Scott Sizemore, whom we can all only hope is as willing to pose nude as Grady Sizemore, but there isn’t any clear plan for shortstop that I’ve seen. WORRISOME.

I just keep thinking back to how badly I freaked out about the lack of catching options after the Tigers jettisoned Pudge, and how tidily the Tigers patched up that problem. That was an example of the Tigers having a serious need at a hard-to-fill position, and it all worked out just fine (if not as offensively glorious as we might have wished, SHUT UP OK GERALD LAIRD IS AWESOME AND GOOD). Just fine. Everything will be fine. Finety fine fine.

*twitch*

Don’t forget to work on your entries for the contest!! December 10 is the deadline!

Fernando Rodney hates me. And you. All of us.

I feel like I just used the FERNANDOOOOO tiger. Was it a couple weeks ago? Was this the most recent time Fernando Rodney drove us all to the brink of frenzied, *rip the TV off the wall and hurl it Hulk-style through the nearest window* levels of horror?

FERNANDO. Why do you hate us? Why do you delight so in our suffering? My suffering is not particularly delicious, OK, it’s actually very undignified and unattractive and often a little squeaky. WHY WOULD YOU WANT TO SEE THAT, FERNANDO? WHY?!

Just in case you missed this game, a quick recap:

–Fernando comes in to pitch the bottom of the 9th. The score is 6-3, Tigers leading.

–Asdrubal Cabrera fouls out.

–Michael Brantley grounds out.

–Two outs! Up 6-3! Bottom of the 9th! Yay!

–Jamey Carroll walks.

–Carroll takes second without a throw due to sloth indifference.

–Shin Soo Choo batting, Fernando throws a crazily wild pitch. Carroll takes third.

–Choo homers. 6-5, Tigers. I clutch at my chest dramatically, like a badly acted commercial for responding quickly to the signs of heart attack.

–Pronk singles. The tying run is now on base, the winning run at the plate.

–Jhonny Peralta breaks his bat. The barrel of the bat and the ball both head for the gap between second and third. Brandon Inge has to leave his feet, sprawling full-out in the dirt on his gimpy un-knees. He somehow, miraculously, mercifully makes the catch for the out.

–Game over, Tigers win, Fernando has earned yet ANOTHER arrrrghsave.

Now, Fernando keeps getting the saves– despite the fact that tonight’s performance was not in the least way unusual for him, he has still technically blown only one save all year long (and the Tigers went on to win that game in extra innings)– so he clearly doesn’t hate the team. He just hates US, the people who watch the games. Maybe he hates Jim Leyland a little bit too, because you know Leyland had developed at least one ulcer this season from watching Fernando work his ~*~pitching magicks~*~.

I just want to know WHY.

win some, lose some, occasionally and embarrassingly lose some in KC

downed by the Mexecutioner, photo by Samara Pearlstein

Tigers! What is this? You sweep in Tampa Bay, then lose the first game in Kansas City? I mean, do you realize where you are? KANSAS CITY. Home of the Royals. R-o-y-a-l-s. The ones who play in the American League of MLB, not some other Royals team. Owners of the worst record in the AL, and the second-worst record in all of MLB (kept from true rock bottom by the Nats). You cats do realize this, right? Right?

I would say that I don’t mean to rag on the Royals or anything, but that would pretty much be a lie. Paws knows I stay up at night worrying about the Tigers’ problems (or at least I stay up a little longer than I otherwise might just so that I can blog about it), but even with all those problems, the Tigers are not the Royals.

Porcello wasn’t at his sharpest, but Bruce Chen was even less sharp, and the Royals bullpen is pretty catdamn terrible– but the Tigers did not score a single run off of any of the relievers who came in after Chen. The Tigers’ bullpen, which has been OK lately, freaked out as soon as FredFred left the game. Man, I hate Opposites Day.

Anyways. At one point Rod and Mario were talking about Rod’s time in Japan (I think it was when Yasuhiko Yabuta came in for the Royals; he’s Japanese and spent a number of years pitching for the Chiba Lotte Marines before coming to the US). Rod was saying that there would always be multiple teams playing in the Tokyo area, so the American players would get together and, uh, sample the nightlife in Roppongi (a district of Tokyo).

Mario: “You could let your hair down in Roppongi!”

Rod: “You sure could… and a whole lot more!”

Oh, Rod.

Also, Fernando Rodney has been suspended for three games for chucking a ball into the stands/press box/wherever he threw it after his last, diciest game. Dave Dombrowski gave a little interview about it that FSND showed during the game and said

–First and foremost, thank cats nobody was hit (he did not actually say ‘thank cats’, but clearly should have).

–Fernando was mad at himself for his performance. He wasn’t mad at anyone in the crowd and wasn’t trying to hit anyone.

–It seems like a pretty stiff penalty to him for throwing a ball into the stands, when he sees guys do that all the time.

I agree with the first two points, and sort of agree with the last one… I think three games, plus a fine, IS a bit much for a spur-of-the-moment gesture that didn’t result in any damage or injury. Just a fine, or a one game suspension, seems more appropriate to me. But when guys throw a ball into the stands, they’re usually underhanding it to a fan; that’s NOT what Fernando was doing here. I get that MLB wants to strongly discourage emotional outbursts that end with objects flying towards the fans. I do think they came down a bit too hard on Fernando, though.

More important? During the interview, Mr. Dombrowski was wearing, you guessed it: a red and white STRIPED SHIRT. Even though the Tigers would of course go on to lose the game, I felt, for that one brief moment, that everything was as it should be.

it's official, Fernando Rodney is trying to kill us

I did not see this game because I was out setting fire to things on the beach. Judging from the box score, it seems that Fernando was, against all the constraints of logic and distance, trying his hardest to join me.

As near as I can make out, Verlander was awesome for eight innings. One run on four hits, one walk, seven Ks. A typical 126 pitches to pad his absurdly high season total. And it looks like Jeff Niemann matched him pretty well. Going into the 9th inning the game was tied at one. I’d imagine it was a great relief to watch JP Howell fall apart and allow three runs in the top of the ninth. I’ll bet fans were settling back contentedly, maybe turning their thoughts to college football.

Then: FERNANDO.

With the Tigers up 4-1 and Verlander freshly departed, Fernando allowed:

–a walk

–an advance of indifference

–another walk

–an RBI single

–an RBI double

There were two outs after the single, so for the final out of the game, the tying run was at third freaking base. The potential winning run was at second. I think it is fair to say that if I had been watching this, I would have been shrieking at the TV, or possibly curled up all agonized-fetus-style on the floor.

Why, Fernando? Verlander pitched well. The offense eventually came through and did well. You, Fernando, got the save in the end, which counts as ‘doing well’. WHY MAKE IT SO STRESSFUL AND DIFFICULT?

You know who I’ll bet did not enjoy this? Justin Verlander. Poor dude throws a squintillion beautiful pitches and has to sit in the dugout and watch Fernando do whatever it is that he was doing out there to the remainder of Verlander’s pretty, pretty game. It must have driven Verlander crazy. I wouldn’t be surprised to hear that he had been vomiting into the bubblegum buckets or something.

Fernando Rodney is not another Rollercoaster Jones. A rollercoaster has its ups and downs, its rational little cycles of good and bad, imposed on it by human will. Fernando Rodney is a force of nature. He’s Hurricane Rodney. Tropical Storm Rodney at the very, very least.

Tigers defeat a whole bunch of Gonzalezes

photo by Samara Pearlstein

It’s pretty late and I am pretty tired. Luckily for you, I took notes on this one. Instead of synthesizing them into some sort of paragraph system I am just going to throw them in here as-is and you are going to deal with it.

–Gio Gonzalez started this game for the A’s. Edgar Gonzalez finished it. In between they had three innings of non-Gonzalezes, so this was a mostly Gonzalez-pitched game on the Athletic’s side of things.

–Armando was rockin’ the one long sleeve early. His throwing arm was sleeved, his glove arm was bare. Jacoby Ellsbury did that a lot last year. Later in the game Armando dropped the other sleeve so that he was sleevily balanced.

–Ryan Raburn got an error because he dropped a ball in foul territory. I know why that’s an error, but still, harsh.

–NOMAR! I forget about him sometimes, take my Red Sox fan card away immediately. And Orlando Cabrera is on the same team, in the very same lineup, oh my goodness, I did not realize that. How awkward. Do you think Orlando Cabrera sometimes starts telling a story to his teammates and he says, “So back in 2004 in Boston…” and then he kind of awkwardly trails off and everyone tries to not look at Nomar? Do you think that happens? I think it does. That ’04 team was the kind of team that would have a lot of stories in it.

Also for some reason it is hilarious to me that Nomar is wearing number 1 now.

–Such a good game for Placido Polanco. He was 2-for-5 with 3 RBI and a run scored, including his first inning two-run homer. Polanco homeruns are like little freaks of nature, so it is always nice to see them supplemented with other solid hitting.

He has the exact same batting average as Curtis Granderson does right now (.259), which freaks me out for some reason… shouldn’t Curtis be higher, with the kind of year Polanco has had? PANICKY PANIC. Curtis’ OPS is a lot higher, though (.704 vs .821).

–Armando has been having Bondo-esque first innings. This is especially evident since tonight he settled down so nicely after that first inning. I almost want to have him talk it out with Bondo, except clearly that will not work because a) Bondo never really worked out his mental pitching issues and b) Bondo does not communicate well, or sometimes at all.

Armando also walked six guys today (in 6.1 innings… he only struck out five), which is not good. Not good at all. But he did get his second consecutive win, which IS good, considering how long he went between wins prior to that last one.

–Every time Adam Everett takes off his helmet I am struck anew by how glorious his hair is. That is some serious blonde-streaked fluff he’s got up there. He has, like, volume and bounce and other things that people desperately try to get out of their shampoos.

–Rod Allen says that Matt Holliday has “no body fat”. He says it with relish.

–I am so heartily sick of those Foundation for a Better Life ads. I don’t particularly enjoy having ‘behavioral values’ shoveled into my face while I’m trying to watch a baseball game. To be quite honest I find the whole thing skeevy, partly because its founder/funder is skeevy, and partly because I just object to the tone of the whole campaign itself. I’m a fan of a baseball team that employs Fernando Rodney, I am not going to get excited over someone cloyingly insisting that I take “optimism” and “pass it on,” you moose-lickers.

–A shot of Fu-Te Ni on the bullpen bench. He appeared to be either talking to himself, or singing to himself. Freddy Dolsi was sitting next to him. They were not speaking to one another.

–They have got to get a new font for the on-screen player stats, Rod Allen can’t read them half the time. Today he couldn’t tell if Zoom had allowed 16 or 18 walks because the 6 looked ambiguous (it was 16 before the game).

–Magglio didn’t look so hot at the plate tonight, he was taking some bad swings, didn’t seem to be seeing the ball well at all. His one hit was pretty bloopy, if I may use that word. So clearly cutting off the hair was not some sort of panacea, THINK ABOUT THAT NEXT TIME, MAGGLIO.

–Zoom had to momentarily hold things up in the 8th so that he could take his glove off and properly bite a loose bit of fingernail or skin or something off of his throwing hand. He was shaking his hand a ton, and after the inning ended he had a huge crowd of Tigers and Tigers trainers staring at his thumb in the dugout. Inge was all over his shoulder.

No word as of right now what it was, a blister or a hangnail or what. I would imagine there probably will be in an hour or so, but screw you guys, I’m going to sleep as soon as I post this.

–No hitting at all yesterday, so much hitting today. Whatever, Tigers. Clearly I don’t understand you and you don’t want me to understand. Be that way.

–In the 9th inning, Miguel Cabrera swung so hard that he let go of the bat and it went flying… but he made contact. The ball ended up being caught by the second baseman, who backpedaled out to the outfield grass, but Miggy was watching the bat and didn’t move from home. What if it had landed, or the fielder had dropped it? So weird. I can’t remember the last time I saw a player lose his bat and make contact, usually it happens on wild misses.

–Someone in the crowd near the end of the game was screaming like a loon during Tigers pitcher windups.

–FERNANDO. This was a textbook example of What He Does in his ongoing Attempts to Kill Us All.

Polanco had singled in a run in the top of the 9th, so the score going into the bottom of the inning was 5-1 Tigers and, thus, no longer a save situation. Fernando was all warmed up, though, so Leyland put him in. Rod and Mario say a bunch of things about him having a quick, clean inning so that he could pitch in tomorrow’s day game if needed.

He immediately walks Nomar on five pitches. I begin grinding my teeth. Jack Cust flies out to left. I temporarily cease dental destruction. I even dare to think something along the lines of, “It’s late, maybe he will just finish the game and I can go to sleep.”

So of course (OF COURSE) he throws a few pitches to Mark Ellis and then Ellis hits a two-run homer to make it 5-3. And then Adam Kennedy singles. Why? Why prolong the agony? Because this is what Fernando Rodney does. THIS IS WHAT HE DOES. You have probably already looked at the boxscore for this game and so you know that we turned a double play to get out of the inning and did not lose, but Fernando had to come in and give up a walk and two hits and two runs. He basically forced Leyland to get Brandon Lyon warm in the bullpen, in case things got even more epically dire.

He only (?) threw 19 pitches, so it’s at least theoretically possible that he would be available in the Wednesday afternoon game, but even if there were no actual negative impacts to the Tigers’ record, this was still an infuriating performance. He drives me clean out of my mind. WHY DOES HE DO THIS? I ALREADY LIVED THROUGH TODD JONES, OK, I THOUGHT THAT TIME WAS OVER.

–Twice in the first two innings, the Tigers had a man caught out between third base and home. TWICE! That’s unacceptable. If it’s bad to make an out at third, it’s even worse to make an out halfway to home. I don’t want to see those sorts of shenanigans again.

everything but the kitchen sink and good pitching

I don’t even know where to start with this game. I feel like I should have been liveblogging it, because then I could have just written down my incoherent reactions to everything as it happened, and I could point you guys at it, and you could read it, and we would have a blog post. Unfortunately I was not liveblogging this one, which meant that I was free to roll around on the floor in agony as Fernando did his Fernando thing without having to stop in the middle to write about it on the internet. But now I have to think of something to say about this unwieldy lumbering mass of a game.

You know what that means. Unconnected and not necessarily chronological bullet point time!

–I love Dontrelle, you all know that I love Dontrelle, but this is getting absurd. I want him to do well SO BADLY, and you can tell that he wants to stay out there and pitch well SO BADLY, and Leyland obviously wants him to be able to hold down a spot in the rotation SO BADLY. There’s a whole lot of freeform WANT being thrown at Dontrelle these days, and on some days, like today, he manages to channel it into something vaguely approximating a proper start.

Three runs over five innings isn’t apocalyptically bad, but it also isn’t good, and we can’t keep doing this. We just can’t. We can’t have EVERY SINGLE GAME thrown by one of our starters turn into some kind of sideshow of pitching freakisms. It’s stressful for the fans, and, more importantly, it’s hell on the team. It puts crazy pressure on a lineup that’s already dangerously spotty in its ability to perform, and it puts crazy pressure on a bullpen that has plenty of troubles of its own, without the starters adding to it.

–Also, Dontrelle clearly hurt himself on that play at home, where he went down on his knee hard while trying to tag a Wrong Sock out. Maybe it’s just a bruise, but he was limping for quite some time afterwards. And when he made that bellyflopping shovel-throw to somehow get Pierzynski out at first, I almost threw up. It looked like Dontrelle was trying to hyperextend every hyperextendable bit of gristle in his body.

–Zach Miner is exempt from this, because he pitched two scoreless innings and didn’t walk anyone, but everyone ELSE who pitched in this game has a SERIOUS PROBLEM, and that serious problem is called THE BASE ON BALLS, and they seriously need to figure out what to do about this. The Tigers, collectively, walked 12 men today. THIS IS NOT OK AT ANY LEVEL OF PROFESSIONAL BASEBALL.

There are many levels of amateur baseball where this would be considered unacceptable as well. Let’s face it, there are college pitching staffs with higher standards than these cats. I want them to know shame.

–AJ Pierzynski is a cretinous knuckle-dragging chin-challenged rat-piss-poor excuse for a catcher. I know the benches cleared today only because everyone was bored, and Pierzynski flapping his sloppy jaw-bits is always a sufficient reason for bench cats to take to the field, no real fightin’ words were said, etc. I just wanted to get that out there.

–Brandon Inge was an on-base hero today. This was unusual, because, hey, Brandon Inge! Getting on base! Doing a basic fundamental bat-related thing! So unlikely, but there it was.

–FERNANDOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOasdfklja;lsdkjfasdlfkj

I can’t take much more of him, it is not good for anyone involved.

–Thank cats for Miguel Cabrera. It’s bad enough to see an improbable 6-3 lead vanish into nothingness in the loving hands of the so-called closer; it would have been so much worse if the Tigs had ultimately lost the game. But Miguel Cabrera would leave no stone unturned, no homerun unhit, no game unwon. Bless his high little socks.