Category Archives: Miguel Cabrera

A public service announcement from Miguel Cabrera and Paws.


illustration by Samara Pearlstein

Guess who just pled no contest to his DUI charge?

Cabrera will get a year of probation, a 6 month license suspension, and around $1400 in fines. He’ll have to take a couple ‘guys this is a bad thing, don’t do it’ classes. The plea allows the charge of resisting arrest to be dropped, and Miggy will avoid jail time. He will also have all the court stuff behind him before Spring Training 2012 gets started. All things considered he is getting off lightly.

KIDS! Let this be a lesson to you! Don’t drink and drive! Do not disappoint Officer Paws, arbiter of peace and justice, guardian of the streets! Because, look: you aren’t Miguel Cabrera.

You get pulled over with a bottle of Jack in the front seat next to you, you yell at some cops, you probably not going to get the kindly treatment afforded to a superstar first baseman. Your license gets suspended for 6 months, you are not going to have your job paying for someone to chauffeur you around: yer takin’ the bus, buddy. And while $1400 is the change that Miggy digs out of his couch cushions, it’s probably not quite such a trivial amount for you or I.

Learn from this, cats and kittens! Do not let Miguel Cabrera’s idiotic example have been in vain! Separate your drinking and your driving. It will be better for everyone. And Officer Paws will be proud.

Eight Nights of Terrible Chanukah Cartoons 2011: Night Two


illustration by Samara Pearlstein

Gelt!

Gelt is the Yiddish word for ‘money’, and is associated with the holiday because cold hard cash used to be one of the presents of choice for children during Chanukah. This tradition still exists, but gelt nowadays is often given in the form of gold-foil-wrapped chocolate coins. Chocolate is obviously the only way to improve upon money, as Miguel Cabrera would doubtless agree.

Why Miguel Cabrera, of all cats? Why not? Anyways, he IS making a good chunk o’gelt himself. Every day is Chanukah for Miggy!

Happy second night!

Stupid Awards Season

Well, here we are. The postseason is over. The preseason is many months away. Roar of the Tigers has stopped watching TV in the name of actually (gasp!) doing work. This season… what season is this? It is a season constructed by Major League Baseball in an attempt to appease us, to give us something to talk about that isn’t trades involving Melky Cabrera or the sad state of Oriole affairs. Yes, we are firmly in the midst of Stupid Awards Season.

Stupid Awards Season asks you to care deeply about these poorly determined awards. And you want to care! You want to care because you want your favorite super wicked awesome baseball player to be recognized by everyone for his super wicked awesomeness. At the same time, you don’t want to care, because you (if you are a sane, moderately educated baseball fan) recognize that these awards are at some essential level mostly what Jim Leyland would call, ahem, horsesh!t.

FOR INSTANCE.


drawings by Samara Pearlstein

Miguel Cabrera wins the batting title. Miguel Cabrera does not win the Silver Slugger. I would tell you how this makes sense, but I cannot, because it actually makes no sense whatsoever. Adrian Gonzalez is a good hitter and all, but Miguel was better than him at basically everything you can legally do with a bat in the game of baseball this year.

It’s ok, because Miguel loves his own bat and has no need for that stupid silver hardware, but it’s the principle of the thing.

BUT THEN

Alex Avila wins the Silver Slugger at catcher. Did he catch more games than anyone else in the universe? Yes. Does this mean that, in my biased little fan-heart, I think he deserves all the awards ever? Yes, yes, of course. Were his overall numbers better than, saaaaay, those of Mike Napoli, who basically hit better across the board and went to the World Series to boot? Erm. Well.

But, you see: this we like. Alex Avila’s durability and (perhaps more importantly) dogged tenacity convince voters that he deserves a metal stick more than Mike Napoli’s 1.046 OPS does. Stupid Awards Season!

Then Austin Jackson fails to win a Gold Glove. Okay. The fact that I wanted him to win is almost certainly, in this case, the tiny Paws in my brain guiding my thoughts. And again, it’s not as if he desperately needs it to tell us all that sometimes he makes plays so good that Rod Allen loses his mind and control of his vocal cords. Just more Stupid Awards Season nonsense.

We are still waiting on the MVP results. But Justin Verlander did get another award recently. It was Player of the Year (or something?) in the Players Choice Awards (or something?). These are even MORE made-up than Silver Sluggers and Gold Gloves. They are nice because they involve charity, but basically they are a measure of how much a particular dude has impressed all the other dudes in the MLBPA in any given year.

Justin Verlander frightens his opposition and his stunning good looks have charmed his peers. He commands respect and he’s popular. This particular Stupid Award is perfect for him, and he has duly received it. Woo, yay, etc.

If a Tiger does not win the MVP award, it will not matter in the least. The award is not strictly based on merit. At root it is meaningless. But that won’t stop our righteous and strident indignation. Something to look forward to! Thanks, Stupid Awards Season!

a little visual reminder to voters


illustration by Samara Pearlstein

Let’s say that you are an entity involved in the Major League Baseball MVP voting this year. You are still wrestling with the decision of what to do with your precious AL MVP vote, and for some strange reason you are reading this blog. Well, hypothetical voter friend, you have come to the right place. Gaze at the image above these words. Let it imprint itself on your consciousness.

It’s very simple. This is a reminder to help you hold the proper voting concept in your brain bits at all times.

M: Miguel Cabrera
V: Justin Verlander
P: Paws

Out of those three, nobody will care which way you vote; all are valid choices. But remember! MVP: Miguel, Verlander, Paws. Now go do your bit for truth, justice, and the Detroit way.

the wonders of autumn


all illustrations by Samara Pearlstein

Are you ready for what we are about to experience, Tigers fans and Friends of the Cats? Are you READY? You know, 2006 was a long time ago. Ready or not, here we go. The first game of the postseason is tonight. Tomorrow is October. It is autumn, and the Tigers are wicked awesome.

The regular season ended, appropriately enough, with Jose Valverde’s 49th save. Do you know how many saves he blew in 2011? You’re a Tigers fan, of course you know, but just in case you’re a fan of some other random team who just happened across this site, I will tell you. Jose Valverde blew ZERO saves in 2011. Forty-nine consecutive saves. Forty-nine glorious dances.

What else happened as the regular season came to a close? Oh, well, you know. Just a little thing like

MIGUEL CABRERA WINNING THE BATTING TITLE because he is the best and he is ours, ours, all ours. His final batting average for the regular season? .344. Choke on THAT, every other hitter in the Majors!

So things ended on a high note, just as we would have wanted. The Detroit chess pieces are arrayed before us. Alex Avila, the sturdy and stolid rook. Cabrera, the dashing knight. Max Scherzer and Doug Fister, the wily bishops. Don Kelly, the manager’s favorite pawn. Who is the queen? Probably Papa Grande, and I mean that as a compliment. Justin Verlander, of course, is king of all he surveys. Why wasn’t this today’s cartoon? I thought of it just now, and I’m not near my scanner. Oh well.

THE POINT. Now we get to see the Tigers play chess with the Yankees, with Curtis Granderson (sadface forever). They will have to outwit them, overpower them, generally chess the heck out of ’em. I don’t know where I’m going with this anymore. PLAYOFFS. GO TIGERS!

Oh, and a very happy New Year to you all!

The Tigers catch a break only if Miguel Cabrera doesn’t.


illustration by Samara Pearlstein

Here’s the scene for you:

Top of the 8th. Game tied at 3 thanks to a Victor Martinez RBI single in the previous inning. Twenty-one year old Kelvin Herrera comes in to make his big league debut, taking the place of Aaron Crow, who had had some, let us say, issues. Herrera’s first ever big league pitch is a fastball that drills Ryan Raburn.

Miguel Cabrera has the night off. He had been playing a lot lately, and with the playoffs already locked in, Leyland decided that the last road game of the regular season was as good a time as any to get Miggy some well-deserved rest.

So Cabrera is just chilling on the bench, doing whatever it is that he does on the bench– flicking sunflower seeds at Verlander, prank calling Carlos Guillen’s day nurse, saying rude things about the umpires in Spanish, napping in his footy pajamas– generally enjoying his day off. But Leyland has now decided that he does not want to lose this stupid game to the Royals. He’s going all out. He’s using Doug Fister in relief of Max Scherzer. He’s mad that the Rhino got hit by a pitch. He grabs Ramon Santiago by the collar, pulls him away from the on deck circle, and tells Cabrera to grab his bat.

“But coach,” Cabrera protests, “I’m in my footy pajamas! This was my nap day!”

“Who cares?” Leyland says. “Victor’s wearing four different sets of sleeves. Avila’s got a safety razor in his back pocket so he can shave between pitches. Inge is wearing Little Victor’s pants ’cause his’re in the wash. Just get on out there and win us the ****ing game.”

He can hardly argue with that, so Cabrera gets his bat and goes out there and jovially menaces the Royals. Kelvin Herrera throws his second ever big league pitch, a fastball that Miggy smacks for an RBI double. Boom, Tigers lead, 4-3.

Leyland sends Danny Worth out to pinch run for Cabrera, so Miggy can get his footy pajamas off the field. Jim Leyland may believe the uniform code is a load of horses**t, but he wouldn’t want to press his luck any more than he has to.

Don Kelly, of all cats, hit a two-run homer after that to put the game more firmly into the Tigers win column, but the damage was already done. The Tigers head back to Detroit on a winning note, and they even managed to get Mister Fister a relief win. Totally stupid, but since he was so win-deprived in Seattle, it’s a nice gesture.

Sweet dreams, Miguel Cabrera.

moonshots for victory


illustration by Samara Pearlstein

I was going to wait until the end of the weekend and do a wrap-up post, but yesterday’s game really demanded some sort of response.

The Tigers were down almost the entire game. After the top of the 5th they were losing 8-1. If the Tigers were going to make up that difference, it would have to be their largest comeback in three years. Brad Penny was being Brad Penny. It was by all accounts excruciatingly hot, making the slow Pennyish pace of the game even more intolerable for fans and fielders alike. The crowd was annoyed, the Wrong Sox were feeling feisty, and if the Tigers had actual tiger tails, they would have been dragging. You don’t come back from that.

Except when you do.

Austin Jackson tripled in a run. Delmon Young hit a two-run homer. (8-4) Wilson Betemit homered. (8-5) With a man on second, Jhonny Peralta singled in a run. (8-6)

At this point it was the bottom of the 9th. Betemit struck out to start. Action Jackson tripled (again!). Ryan Raburn came up, representing the tying run. No way, right?

Oh, but he did. The Rhino hit one 424 feet, a soaring moonshot that tied the game at 8. Rain had lowered the temperature on the field. The Wrong Sox were stunned.

It was still far from inevitable that Detroit would win the game, but there is a certain inexorable slide towards Tigers victory that begins when you give up the tying run in the 9th inning and leave time for Miguel Cabrera to come up to bat. After Raburn, Delmon Young struck out (2 outs), and then Cabrera came to the plate.

He only needed one pitch.

With nobody on base, the only way he could win it immediately was with a home run, and that is what he proceeded to do. Boom, moonshot #2, game over, walkoff Tigers win and a great big pile of happy hugging cats at home plate. It was such an extreme turnaround that it was hard to even remember what Penny had done to the first half of the game. And that is good; that is as it should be.

The miracle of life, in every way.


illustration by Samara Pearlstein

Congratulations are in order for Miguel Cabrera and Mrs. Miguel Cabrera, because today they have a brand new kitten! This one is reportedly a boy, and the third Cabrera kitten. Mazel tov, Miggy!

A happy event to be sure, but this was also a miracle of life on another level. His wife was induced, so the Tigers knew ahead of time to put Cabrera on the paternity list. This allowed them to to call up a replacement player for one day. Do you see where this going? DO YOU SEE?

I have never been so happy to see Omir Santos in my all my days.

Let it enter into the record: August 25, 2011, ALEX AVILA FINALLY GETS A DAY OFF. And it is all thanks to the brand new Cabrera kitten. New life for all.

send Jim Leyland all your hamsters


all images by Samara Pearlstein

The quote in the top TC is not verbatim; Leyland said something very much like that in a pregame interview, but I wasn’t taking notes so I didn’t get the exact words. He definitely said that he didn’t have any hamsters right now, though, and if fans thought they had the hamsters, he grumpily invites them to mail said hamsters on in.

Right now the Tigers are in dire need of some serious hamsters. Certain things make sense– Austin Jackson’s wrist is at least comprehensible– but the Tigers need a hamster for the third base situation, a hamster for the issues in the rotation… the bullpen… a hamster for Justin Verlander’s inexplicably tentative and offspeedy outing last night… all these things require hamsters, and Jim Leyland doesn’t have any right now. He’s admitted it. Send some in, if you’ve got ’em.

I’m trying to ignore the rest of that Friday night game. Verlander is allowed to have offdays and it would have been nice for the offense to pick him up on such a rare occasion, but… deep breaths… whatever.

Miguel Cabrera got his 1,500th career hit, that was nice.

Carlos Guillen is allegedly coming back today, allegedly at full health, or at whatever fragile and no doubt transient state of being passes for full health with Carlos Guillen these days. AlAl should be coming back too. Maybe they’ll bring some hamsters with them.

the creature in the lineup


illustrations by Samara Pearlstein

No, I am not talking about Don Kelly. I’m talking about that moment however many games ago, when Rod Allen referred to Miguel Cabrera and Brennan Boesch together in the lineup as a “two-headed beast”. From the moment those words were uttered, this cartoon became inevitable.

Miggy is currently batting .333 and OPSing 1.079. Brennan is batting .333 and OPSing .906. Beastly.

Other stuff that’s been happening

–Ryan Perry is back. He appears to have two functioning eyeballs, although really if they replaced one with a glass model, or perhaps a cybernetic robot eye, I don’t think I would be able to tell even on an HD broadcast. So we might be making some assumptions here. In any event, Perry is on the roster, and Enrique Gonzalez was sent down to make room for him. Papa Grande lost his shopping-for-the-rookies buddy.

–I found this note to myself in my email account, but I have no idea where it came from. Probably the Tuesday game?

“The only time anyone calls me Phillip is my mother when I’ve done something wrong.” -Phil Coke, via Mario

–Don Kelly batting third, Ryan Raburn getting regular playing time at second base. Why is this happening to us?

–Raburn became the first person ever to hit the roof of Safeco Field in Seattle with a popup. This seems kind of unbelievable but I have no way to fact-check it so I suppose we’ll all just have to believe the Man when he tells us that this is so. Regardless, it was fun when it happened because the ball changed directions when it hit the roof, and we all got to see Chone Figgins run around like a crazy person in pursuit.

–There was some ‘news’ on Joel Zumaya, but it basically amounted to “yeah, he’s still injured, but we are sharing with him the quiet delusion that he can return at some point and pitch in the Majors without his arm exploding. Shhh. Shhh. He wants to believe.”

–Victor Martinez is on the DL with strained groin-bits. He tried to play through them but it was extremely clear that sheer willpower alone was not going to be enough; he could barely move around on the field, and even a DH has to be able to stagger semi-competently around the bases. Omir Santos is up to take his place so we will hopefully never ever need to see Don Kelly, emergency backup catcher, wearing the gear.

MORE IMPORTANTLY. We were informed that Victor Martinez plays the accordion. In fact he played Happy Birthday on his accordion to Miguel Cabrera.

I repeat: VICTOR MARTINEZ PLAYS THE ACCORDION. He owns an accordion. We have a baseball player on the Detroit Tigers who plays the accordion. A-C-C-O-R-D-I-O-N. The fact that there are no photos of this yet is a tragedy of a scope that cannot be comprehended, but until such time as the universe/team photographers see fit to bless us with photographic evidence of Victor Martinez playing the accordion, you’ll have to make do with a Terrible Cartoon.