photo thing by Samara Pearlstein
Preying on the bullpen woes of others! Yeah! Running rampant on a pitcher/catcher combination suffering from Yips of Terror! Yeah! Stealing home when the other team does something stupid! Doubleplusyeah! Winning baseball games by being somewhat good at baseball! Indeed!
Lots of fun things happened in this one, but in the end the Tigers won because the Mariners decided to put on an instructional exercise in haplessness. King Felix was great, as he usually is (the only run he gave up was only sort of earned, as the scoring baserunner resulted from an at-bat that continued because a fan may or may not have interfered with a ball in foul territory [whew]). Mark Lowe came in and you should just insert a sad trombone right there. Wah-waaaaahhhhhh.
Throw in a zesty handful of Rob Johnson looking absolutely terrible behind the plate, and a pinch of whatever the hell happened when Russell Branyan failed to tag a picked-off Miguel Cabrera, allowing Ryan Raburn to steal home, and you’ve got a tasty stew of Mariners fail, served up to the Tigers all pretty on a silver-and-Northwest-green platter.
That said, of course it’s nice (some would say ‘a relief’) to see the Tigers actually taking advantage of the duncery of an opposing team, and the Cats did do SOME things right all on their own.
–Miguel Cabrera hit like Miguel Cabrera. It is always nice to see him do this, it feels like the Universe is nodding in approval as the natural order of things is reaffirmed. Tonight he went 3-for-4 and had two RBI… the tying and go-ahead runs, as it turned out. He also stole a base, for the lulz.
–I know there has been a lot of joking on The Internet about how we’re all treating Alex Avila like he’s some sort of permanently-five-o-clock-shadowed Savior (just look at the current Bless You Boys header), but when he hit his home run tonight, thus did Belief throw open the dusty windows of my heart for at least a moment, casting light upon those places which have so long languished in the darkness, and lo, it was Good.
–Fernando Rodney, of course, had to make things interesting in the 9th by allowing two runners to reach scoring positions in a game where the Tigers had a two-run lead. He dug into his secret bag of tricks and managed to get out of it, after shaving days off all our life expectancies yet again, but what I found most impressive was the way Comerica was chanting, “ROD-NEY! ROD-NEY!” once there were two outs.
Such support for the closer who seemingly thrives on viewer torture is very impressive. You’ve got to applaud that.
–FredFred was great for five innings. Spectacular! His only run was a singleshot homer, he only walked one guy, he struck out a career-high eight. In the 6th inning, I don’t know what happened. The Spazzosaurus, maybe.
In any event, it is a BIG HONKIN’ DEAL to take a game away from King Felix. Of course, these are the Tigers, which means that I fully expect to watch them suddenly forget how to hit against whatever dregs of humanity the Mariners decide to throw at them next.