Category Archives: Scott Sizemore

the Oakland A’s actually want Scott Sizemore

photo by Samara Pearlstein

I guess the Tigers got tired of scenes like the above, because they have just traded Scott Sizemore, his .222 batting average, and his .567 OPS to the Oakland A’s. In return, the Tigers receive former starter/current lefty reliever David Purcey, along with his 3.60 ERA, 1.27 WHIP, and small sample size of 15 innings pitched this season.

Yeah. Um.

The post title is actually a little bit of a lie, because according to Jason Beck, Sizemore will be joining the A’s in a triple-A capacity. Second base for the A’s at this point in time is mostly Mark Ellis (batting even worse than Sizemore) with a backup of Andy LaRoche (almost as bad, and mostly playing SS/3B this year), so it’s not like there’s no room for Sizemore to work his way onto the team. Still.

The Detroit lefty relief corps right now consists of Purcey, Charlie Furbush, Adam Wilk and Daniel Schlereth. Obviously someone is leaving… two someones, actually, since Andy Oliver is coming up to pitch this weekend. Ryan Perry has been filled with struggles (turns out this is why he cut his hair, as noted in yesterday’s game post; he’s been trying all sorts of things to change his luck) so he might be one of the Expendables. Not sure yet who the other will be. It would be kind of mean to bring Wilk up and then send him packing again so soon, but do they really need THAT many lefties?

David Purcey is a career 5.17 pitcher. He has a fastball that hangs out in the low 90s, so as a lefty I guess there’s your point of interest. The word you’re looking for right now is ‘meh’.

Danny Worth reaps the benefits of this move, as he’s the infielder getting recalled from MudHenville to do what Sizemore has been doing, but hopefully better. At least slightly better. Please.

No Will Rhymes (remember, he was the one sent down when the Great Scott Sizemore Experiment of 2011 began), not yet anyways. He’s batting .296 and OPSing .728 for Muddy right now. Danny Worth was batting .270 and OPSing .787. Just sayin’.

For a little blast from the past reference, the only David Purcey graphic I had on file was the one heading up this post, from 2008. Good times. Good, futile times.

the triumphant return of Scott Sizemore

illustration by Samara Pearlstein

I was at the Angels/Red Sox game tonight, so I did not see any of the Tigers game, aside from score updates on the Monster and via my dad’s phone. Sounds like Scott Sizemore was basically AWESOME AWESOMEPANTS (3-for-4 in his first day back!) and clearly deserved acknowledgment.

Here’s the problem: I don’t have any cartoons of Sizemore (he’s present in larger cartoons, but there are none of just him). I also don’t have any photos of Scott Sizemore, which is my usual backup for when I’m too tired/busy/whatever to draw things for the blog.

Additional problems: I got home from the Sox game late, I was already wicked tired, and I am working on a laptop with a trackpad. The vast majority of the drawings you will see around here are drawn old school, with ink on paper, then scanned and colored in Photoshop. But this late at night, this tired, and needing to get up for work tomorrow, I was not about to go through the whole process of drawing something, turning on and hooking up the scanner, scanning the drawing, coloring it in a bunch of layers, etc.

So what could I ‘draw’ in 5 minutes or so, using a laptop trackpad (this is sort of like fingerpainting)?

There you go. Scott Sizemore to the 2B rescue, at least for one game.

Now I am seriously falling asleep. Let us celebrate Scott Sizemore while he’s here with this truly terrible Terrible Cartoon.

Action Jackson

illustration by Samara Pearlstein


That’s really all I have to say about that.

Congrats also to:

Scott Sizemore, for his first big league home run,

Brennan Boesch, for his first big league home run, which just happened to be a grand slam,

Gerald Laird, for a real actual extra base hit,

Jose Valverde, for everything that makes him HIM,

and finally to Rick Porcello, for getting very, very, VERY lucky. I’ve got my beady little eye on you, mister, you’d better step it up next time. The only reason I won’t yell at you right now is because I don’t want to distract too much from the kittens getting their first big hits, and from Austin Jackson’s awesomeness.

OH WAIT ONE MORE! Congrats to all the fans, for surviving another April in the D. It’s over now, friends. It’s over. Breathe easy.

welcome back to Detroit

cartoon by Samara Pearlstein

The gates have opened, the hot dogs are roasting (or whatever it is they do to make those things nominally cooked). The lights are on, the grass, despite the temperature, is green. Rod and Mario have returned to their accustomed booth. Paws has swept the dust from home plate. It’s the home opener!

And the Tigers won. Which is great, because I had scrawled spring cleaning Paws up there before the game, and his smugly pleased expression would have looked awkward if we’d lost. Thanks for that, Cats.

FredFred gets the win, and although he only went five innings (87 pitches), he looked sharp. He gave up two runs: a singleshot homer from Travis Hafner, and an RBI single from Mike Redmond, who stayed with the ball way deep into the strikezone and just poked it through the defense. Porcello didn’t look that bad in either at-bat. And did I mention how cold it was during the game? Because it was apparently cold. Miserably, Detroit-ly cold. Not-great-for-pitchers-ly cold. FredFred handled it well. It could have been more efficient, it could have been a little cleaner, but I am content.

Inge on Porcello’s lack of big game jitters, after the game: “He’s a better guy than I am, I dunno. He’s toeing the mound with 50,000 people out there and it doesn’t look like it bothers him at all.”

Scott Sizemore got his very first big league hit! A single with one out and a man on in the fifth. He eventually came around to score on a hilarious series of bad defensive events on the part of the Racist Logos. I’m just glad he got it out of the way before the season wore on much longer; if he started pressing to get that first hit, it probably would not have ended happily. (As an aside: in this game, there were two Sizemores [Scott and Grady] and two Cabreras [Miguel and Asdrubal].)

A note on how cold it was: the loudest cheers of the day were on the few occasions when the sun came out. The first time it happened, Rod and Mario had just mentioned Ernie Harwell. Suddenly the sun comes out and the crowd roars. They couldn’t have planned it better, unless Rod Allen can control the clouds with his mind, which I guess is a possibility that must be considered.

Jim Leyland, after the game:
–Porcello wasn’t sharp by his own admission, couldn’t get strike one, had a little trouble with his control, but it was a good sign he could come out when he wasn’t on top of his game and still get the win.
–Agrees that we need to start doing better against starting pitchers.
–He’s “never one to look for excuses”, won’t blame FredFred’s lack of ‘feel’ on the weather. Claims he thought it was going to be brutal, but wasn’t as bad as he expected. “Fans got excited when the sun came out a few times, and so did I. I mean, I’m old. It felt good, believe me.”

FredFred, after the game:
— “In regard to some of the other guys in this clubhouse, I haven’t done much. It’s a good start and I’m happy with what I’ve done so far, but it’s a long season ahead of us…”
–Struggled with his command early in the counts, rest of the team backed him up.
–Agrees with Leyland that the weather was not much of a factor, says he was just a little erratic.
–He was pretty amped up, especially for the first inning. “I was prepared for it, but at the same time, you can’t help being a little excited out there.”
–Calls Joel ‘Zoomy’.

Damon, after the game:
— “We are definitely going to count on all 25 guys here, and also some guys we had to send out at the end of the spring…. you need everybody, guys you can count on, guys like Raburn, guys like Santiago, Kelly. You need those types of players and these guys, they fit well into the system. I think that’s why we’re going to be a very good team.”
–On the burgeoning beard: “It feels a little messy [reporters laugh]. I would shave it, but we’ve been playing good baseball. Who cares what I do? I’ll sacrifice a few o-fers for team victory.”
— “I promise you there’ll be some hits in my future, and some contribution.” Said this with a grin, the reporters laughed.

Phil Coke, after the game:
— “It was a hairy situation, felt like I went out there and handled the hairy situation… Everybody’s got to do something, I might as well make it interesting once or twice.” Stands up, goes on to say that he can’t stand doing that really, felt like he let down his teammates a little bit.
— “It’ll get better from here, I promise.”
–He has freckles! Thank you, HD.
–Asked about how the bullpen feeds off of each other, he starts talking about how they do, and they rally ’round when you might have a guy who struggles. Then he takes himself and his performance today as an example. Holy cats, someone needs to go in there and give the man a hug.

Seriously, Coke faced five batters. He gave up no hits and no runs. He inherited one baserunner, who did not come around to score. He walked two guys and had to leave them for Zoom to deal with, which must be what has got him so down, but Zoom didn’t let either one of them score. It’s not that bad, Phil Coke! Please cheer up!

Tim Allen, Detroit area native, in the booth in the second inning:
–Sadly admits that he is a Lions fan.
–Hates on the FSND headset, says it’s like something “from the ’30s”, asks why they don’t have Bluetooth yet.
–Expresses surprise that Dave Dombrowski went to Western Michigan and got a good job (Allen himself went to Western).
–Big fan of Dave Bing, thinks he respects the city and knows what needs to happen.
–People ask him to do the Buzz Lightyear voice all the time, but it’s disturbing for small children, because he doesn’t look like Buzz Lightyear. Says it’s like a kid seeing a guy in a Mickey Mouse suit with the head off.

Mario, asking about Tim Allen’s comedy start in Detroit: “Were you funny back then?”
Tim Allen: “I’m gonna knock you out. If I can get this headset off, I’m gonna knock you out.”

things Rod Allen said:
— “You know what they say, there ain’t no party like a Detroit party, and that’s absolutely a known fact.”
— “This much I do know, he’s got a big league name! AUStin JACKson!”

Magglio had another good day, Inge had a good day. Adam Everett had yet another hit. The Tigers turned three double plays once again. It would be nice if all of this could have resulted in runs WITHOUT the necessity of a Racist Logo screw-up, but I guess a win is a win. Happy Home Opener to us all.

Opening Day is awesome when you win. Today was awesome.

Yeah. That’s a win. You’re catdamned right it is. Photo by Samara Pearlstein, emphasis by Miguel Cabrera.

I took notes. I know these posts are your favorites.

Opening Day 2010. Justin Verlander vs. Zack Greinke. The game and what happened in it.

–The Royals are wearing their powder blues. I am a big fan of the actual royal blue, but these are kinda nice. They should’ve gone with the full royal blue hats, though, not powder blue with royal brims. Kansas City boos Johnny Damon lustily. You’re not so bad, KC. I could grow to like you a little bit.

–Carlos Guillen pops one up over the infield, nobody calls it, Greinke throws his hands out as if to say I DON’T KNOW GUYS WHERE IS IT I JUST DON’T KNOW. Bloomquist makes a last-ditch dive for it, but misses. Magglio scores from second I think, making it 1-0 Tigers. These are the Royals I remember.

–The FSND Verlander scouting report: Workhorse. Repeat delivery. The Butler did it.
Mario: I can’t believe you used that.
Rod: I said it!
Mario: Especially to a Spartan…
Shortly thereafter Mario calls Billy Butler “one of Verlander’s nemeses”.

–Here comes Scott Sizemore with his yellow body armor batting gloves. Rod calls Greinke “The Truth”, caps verbally implied.

–Verlander is riding at 97-99 mph so far today. In the second inning, Jose Guillen singles up the middle. A couple guys later, Yuniesky Betancourt survives a long at-bat to blast a two-run homer. 2-1 Royals. Whhhyyyyyyy

–Damon booed again in his second at-bat. Mmmhm. In the bottom of the third, David DeJesus strikes out on a 98 mph fastball way outside, then hops around several times because he can’t believe he let himself be beaten so badly. Mmmmhmm.

–Rod Allen describes Willie Bloomquist’s knee surgeries as ‘orthoscopic’. He means ‘arthroscopic’, unless Bloomquist has eyes in his knees. Although, really, what do I know about the physical mutations of the Royals?

–Scott Sizemore has an excellent HURR DURR batting face. He kind of lets one side of his mouth hang open when he’s concentrating really hard up there. Pretty great. He breaks his bat; the barrel flies all the way out to third, skipping just past Bloomquist’s feet as he goes to field the ball. Bats these days, why I tellya, they oughta take action, action I tellsya.

–Saturday at Comerica will be a Year of the Tiger celebration! Oh man, if you are going to that game, you better live it the hell up. That sounds amazing. In other important promotions news: the only bobblehead giveaway so far seems to be the Justin Verlander K-counter bobbleheads on April 30, which somehow manage to look nothing like him. There is a ‘Paws foam tail’ giveaway on July 11 that sounds intriguing, but it’s only for kids. I’m a kid at heart, shouldn’t that count? I think so.

–Fifth inning, two outs. Chris Getz singles up the middle. DeJesus, up next, shows bunt but pulls it back. Laird catches the ball cleanly, but while trying to transfer it to his hand somehow throws the ball straight up into the air (??). While he’s waiting for it to come back down, Getz steals second base. Not kidding. I’m still not entirely sure what happened here.

–DeJesus singles. A few pitches later he steals second, making a TERRIBLE slide. He faceplants about a foot and a half away from the bag, losing his helmet and somehow bollocksing up the front of his belt. He lies there for a few seconds in shame, then picks his head up and starts laughing at himself. We would laugh with him, but Verlander walks Scott Podsednik to load the bases, and Billy Butler follows that up with a two-run single to make it 4-1 Royals. Verlander threw Butler only fastballs, including the last two pitches in the at-bat, which were both clocked at 100 mph by FSND’s gun.

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mysteries of the Detroit infield

digillustration by Samara Pearlstein

So the Phillies have signed Placido Polanco to a 3 year deal (option for a 4th year, when he will be 38 years old). To play third base.

You can take a moment to revel in the sheer WHAT of that, but when you’re done I think we need to talk about WHAT IN THE HOLY CATS ARE THE TIGERS GOING TO DO WITH THEIR INFIELD IN 2010?!


The Tigers were rumored to be ‘shopping’, or at least open to potentially trading Gerald Laird, I guess because he’s probably going to make at least $3 million next year? OK. I don’t even want to think about this. He’s going to be 30 years old for the entire 2010 season, he hasn’t been unusually injury prone or anything (what, some small back spasms that didn’t land him on the DL?), he’s a great defensive catcher who gets insufficient credit for that because his bat was weak as hell this season.

No, he isn’t Joe Mauer, but you know what, we aren’t going to get Joe Mauer. JOE MAUER: NOT OURS. This is a Fact of Life, I have accepted it, I have digested it, I am over it. Yadier Molina: not ours. Also not ours: Pudge circa 2004, Bill Freehan circa 1974.

Could we find a catcher who would come cheaper than Gerald Laird? Yes, of freaking course we could, we could spend the season with a cheapity-cheap-cheap combination of Dusty Ryan and Alex Avila’s 5 o’clock shadow, and maybe they would sometimes hit, and maybe they would make some good throws on occasion or whatever, but they would not be as good defensively as Gerald Laird and they’re just children so they would not be as big a help with our pathetic pitching staff, which has issues, you know that it does, we love it anyways but our love is not enough to heal it.


(Don’t even bring up Brandon Inge. Don’t even. You don’t want to go there with me.)

First base

As of right now, Miguel Cabrera is our 2010 first baseman, but he too has been at the heart of a number of trade rumors this winter. This is because

a) he has an enormous contract ($20 million next year, then $106 million from 2011-2015. That is a lot of millions) and the Tigers, as they keep telling us over and over and OVER again, are trying to do something to reduce their payroll,

b) he was pretty much the only Tiger from ’09 to hit with something approaching consistency (good consistency, not, you know, consistently failing to get hits) and as such is one of the few Tigers who can be said to have real trade value without people laughing at us,

c) he got all mutually combative with his wife and she threw him out of the house because he came home drunk after partying with Wrong Sox players when he had potentially division-clinching games to play in the next two days and the police got involved and Dave Dombrowski had to pick him up from the police station really early in the morning, at which point Cabrera’s blood alcohol level was still quite elevated, and I’m sure none of this made Mr. Dombrowski real pleased with him,

d) and also because Lynn Henning likes trading away the entire team.

But let’s face it, Miggy is going to be 27 next year. He’s entering his prime. We just got him all nice and broken-in at first base. It’s going to be difficult to find someone else willing to take on his contract, and even if that happens, the Tigers will need to be offered something truly out-of-this-litter-box spectacular to make it so. It is unlikely to be made so. So, uh, there.

Third base

It will be Brandon Inge. He’s due $6.6 million in 2010 and he just had surgery on both knees at once. He is such an untradeable commodity that we can’t even call him a commodity, he’s just, like, THERE. Not that I consider this a bad thing, because I love Brandon Inge and eagerly await his 2010 resurgence, fueled entirely by hustle and determination and sugar-laden gum and bionic knees.

Look, you know that Detroit wants Inge to do well next year, he is the longest-tenured Tiger and it would be a good story, and there isn’t really much of anyone else to back him up. If you think they DIDN’T pump his knees full of self-repairing nanobots while they had the chance, well, I would just have to question your obvious baseball naïvité.

Second base

Scott Sizemore is allegedly the cat for the job. He is a few months older than me, he went to Brandon Inge’s college, he split last year between double-A and triple-A, hitting moderately well at both levels. He broke his ankle in the Arizona Fall League and has been recovering ever since. Allegedly it’s healing well and he hopes to be up to speed by the end of Spring Training.

He has not had a single at-bat at the Major League level and the Tigers are willing to entrust second base to him. I know it worked out OK for FredFred and it worked out… kind of horribly, actually, for Jeremy Bonderman, but that wasn’t immediately evident– anyways the point is that I’m not so sure this is a good idea for a position player.

I don’t know! I’m not a Scott Sizemore expert. Presumably the front office cats who are familiar with him have reasons for believing that this is a doable thing. I just worry. It’s what I do. If Sizemore’s ankle doesn’t end up being ready, or if he isn’t as competent as hoped right away, I’m not sure what the Tigers do. Is there a viable backup plan? (Just lie to me and say yes.)



Try to get Adam Everett back after not offering him arbitration? Try to pick up some scrub and pair him up with Ramon Santiago all season long? Try to work a trade for someone random I can’t think of right now? Or dip into the unimpressive free agent pool?

Which would mean… go with someone old? I think all the free agent shortstops this winter are old. Like, over 30. Craig Counsell will be 39 years old, can he still walk? (Aside: I have a cactus named Craig Counsell. True story. He needs to be re-potted but I keep putting it off because it’s hard to re-pot a cactus.) Orlando Cabrera is 35 and I am pretty sure he’s a Type A guy. Bobby Crosby will only be 30 but he’s so injury-prone that his body is more like 78. The Red Sox probably just signed Marco Scutaro.

Shortstop is a huge, gaping hole for the Tigers right now. Combine that with the uncertainty about second base, and the possibility of (Paws forbid) Inge getting hurt again or something, and we are looking at a very unhappy situation with a lot of Tiger fan tears in the coming season.

Seriously, what are we doing for a shortstop? We aren’t really considering Ramon Santiago full time, right? Please, someone tell me that they have an idea that does not involve Ramon Santiago full time. Please.