Monday, September 2, 2013

Detroit Tigers week in review: Week 21

Kind of a tough week for Detroit Tigers fans. The Tigers go out and lose 3 of 4 to the Oakland A's at home, and in one of those losses Ace Justin Verlander struggles mightily. Then they bring in the Cleveland Indians and beat up on the tribe making their record against them 15-4 for the 2013 season. While getting banged up by a team the tigers could see in the playoffs sometimes in baseball it matters who you beat and when. 15-4 versus the tribe means the magic number is 19, and the tigers handled their business at least within the division.

As always we look at the splits to try and explain exactly what is going on with this team. The overall record is 80-57 and the tigers have a 7.5 game lead on the tribe and the division title is a virtual lock. A big test comes today with the Tigers on the road in Boston playing a very good Red Sox team. We would like to see the tigers play well, but with Miguel Cabrera ailing the tigers might be tempted to but their season on cruise control and get healthy for the post season.

September call ups are upon us. Phil Coke, Jose Alvarez, Bryan Holaday, along with top[ prospect Nick Castellanos have all joined the big club and we shall see how those call ups play out over the rest of the month and what is likely another post season appearance by the team.

In other organization news Toledo Mud hens manager Phil Nevin has been let go, and the Mud Hens will begin a search for a new skipper. It seems very likely that the Tigers will look within their own system to promote someone, maybe the manager of the Erie Sea Wolves who has gotten a lot out of the talent on that team.

The Good:

  • Prince Fielder- We have been a lot down on Big Prince so far in 2013 but the truth is he has had a pretty good season. Maybe not in terms of power numbers but we are talking about a huge man that has 29 doubles and will wind up with over 100 RBI. All while hitting behind Cabrera. He has some personal issues to deal with and we always knew his power numbers would suffer playing half his games at the Copa. 
  • Anibal Sanchez- With Max Scherzer being basically automatic, and JV struggling (by his standards) we can sort of overlook Sanchez. he has had a very solid year with a 12-7 record 151 innings pitched, 163 K's, and an ERA of 2.68. Hopefully he keeps that up and lives up to the terms of a fairly large free agent contract. 
  • Jose Iglesisas- Jose is magic with the glove and will be the starter at Short Stop for this club for years to come. However, as he nears 100 at bats for the Tigers he is hitting .292, and is good enough bunting that Manager Jim Leyland is more willing to let him drop a bunt here and there. This adds another dimension to the Tigers and that is a very good thing. 
The Bad:
  • Cabrera's injury- He has missed the last few games, and we are not sure exactly what is meant by abdominal strain. This is a cat who thrives on being in the lineup everyday but who is just dinged up right now. 
  • JV- We have yet to see the dominate JV this year that we have seen in past years. He did turn 30, he has pitched a lot over the last couple of seasons but before we get to concerned let's see what he does in the playoffs and maybe even next year. Players are most remembered for what they do in October and JV above anyone else in this town has certainly earned the benefit of the doubt. The good news is he was very sharp yesterday against the tribe. 
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