Monday, August 07, 2006

The Tigers at 112

Right now the Tigers are 76-36, 40 games above .500 and staying strong. If you consider the last ten games, it looked like the sheen may have been off the Tigers. To give a quick review of the 10, it started with a loss in Minnesota. Sure the Tigers won two out of three, but the loss was the result of an 8th inning brain cramp by the infield; two errors and a balk by the pitcher. To be honest I feared this series with the Twins since historically the Twins have had the Tigers number. I read an interesting fact which proves this, the Twins, at the start of the year were 32-20 at Comerica.

Then it was off to Tampa for a four game set. Knowing how the DevilRays are a struggling team this, like every year, one would have thought, sweep. Yet the series started with a loss, leaving the Tigers with a rare two game losing streak. This was followed by two wins and then a loss. So instead of a series victory, this was a series split. This was the end of a ten game road trip which saw the Tigers win 6 games.

The last weekend was a home series with another AL Central opponent, the Cleveland Indians. The Tigers met them at a great time, the Indians are definately in a slide and could realistically say hopes for a playoff are long and probably not going to happen. Their hopes took a bad break when the Tigers swept them. The series was not without excitement, the Tigers won the first two in exciting fashion, especially the second game in which they won in the 9th. So here's the logic of baseball, a team will lose a game (Sunday at Minnesota) they should have won and win a game they should have lost. Then again Yogi Berra said it best: "The two words that describe baseball are 'anything can happen'". Sunday was a pitching duel that was won by the Tigers through a combination of 'small ball' and an error. Still good teams make their own luck.

This leaves game 112, against the hated Twins. Again the Twins brought to the mound their ace rookie pitcher Francisco Liriano, who was 12-2 ERA of 1.96. This may have looked like a potential loss, but the Tigers took care of him. His boxscore- ip4, HITS-10, RUNS-4, ER-4. He took the loss and his ERA went to 2.19. By the way, his ERA against the Tigers is 4.94.

The Tigers went 7-3 over the last 10 games. They are now 10 games up on the White Soxs.

I'm not sure if it's time to start this but Detroit's magic number is 42. Which also happens to be the ultimate answer to life, the Universe and everything.

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