Sigh...well I guess if nothing else has worked all year, might as well take a path very rarely traveled. Giambi to save the season! And...we are off to a great start, Lead off single on a 1-0 fastball by Kinsler, followed by a GIDP by Hunter on a 0-1 slider. At least Cabrera will only be able to put the Tigers up by 1 instead of 2 or 3. Salazar puts a strike two pitch where Allen tried to put it against Cabrera but left it too far over hte middle and lower, swing and miss this time, single last time. THen Cabrera reaches out on 0-2 and gets a cheap single to RF. Salazar jams VMart with a high inside fastball for an easy flyout. Hopefully he is hitting location, because if he isn't that means we will be on pins and needles all game. 11 pitches while working around 2 hits. Not bad. Thank you Tigers for being uber-aggressive.
I have no idea, overrun the ball probably? ANyway, on schedule, the offense shuts down. So we had Verlander at almost 40 pitches in 2 IP, now with one out in the 4th, he is only at 50. Way to get into their bullpen guys. WTH was Bourn doing bunting on the first pitch against Verlander in his second AB?! He just had a nice AB against him the first time around with a line out to LC, and he bunts on the first pitch?! A few line drives and a "sharply" hit groundball means there is some good contact, yet nothing to show for it, still really frustrating. We need a lot more runs than this, we need to give Atchison, Shaw and Allen rest today, and even Lee if possible. Man, who would have thought we would miss Axford. Unfortunately, the Tigers have few LHH, so the lefties are not as useful in this series. After a swing and miss at a hanging slider by Santana, Kipnis works a five pitch walk. Chisenhall fouls off two consecutive fastballs around belt high inner third of the plate. Fouls a slider down and out of the zone, then takes two fastballs out of the zone as Verlander is in his ramp up stage going up to 94 and 95 after staying around 92 and 93...87 MPH changeup misses...and you have to think Kipnis is going on 3-2. Chisenhall doesn't K as much as he used to and kipnis has enough speed to possibly make a straight steal...and I think the runner goes and Chisenhall takes a changeup that stays in the zone and lines it to RF, Kipnis scores and Chisenhall to third on a throwing error by Kinsler! And the error hurts the Tigers as Gomes fights off a 95 MPH fastball in on the hands and pops it up just beyond VMart's reach for a bloop single!
Sigh...Giambi after doing a good job being patient and waiting for a good pitch middle in, decides to chase the first pitch changeup and of course GIDPs.
Wahooinkorea wrote: Thanks for the update. Walters has been cold for a bit now. I sense a defensive change at RF - to a true OF - coming (Holt).
With a 4-run lead, it wouldn't be the worst move in the world, but Francona seems to hate the idea of defensive replacements. If he believed in them...there would be a lot more moves in recent games. It will be interesting if URshela gets the call-up, if Francona managed like defense matters, there would be a niche for him on the team. Any RHRP on the 40 man not yet on the 25? They need all the help they can get, carrying 3 LHRP is becoming a burden
CATS44 wrote: It was a routine bouncing ball that Walters clanked. Single and error.
OK thanks for the clarification. At least it wasn't a "whiff", but I guess even then, Cabrera probably wouldn't have scored. I think FBs to Suarez is smart, he isn't a good enough hitter to make solid contact with the upper 90s heat. WOrst thing would be to throw something off-speed that says "hit me".
Anyone notice something, one thing the Indians rotation has done all on their own that has gone a long way to improve their performance throughout the year has been to cut down on walks. A very overlooked improvement, of course Masterson no longer going every fifth day and ZMac being replaced by House has helped, but still, I think across the board, the control-level has risen tremendously.
CATS44 wrote: Walters makes a fine play, running down a drive into the gap by Davis to end the Tigers fourth.
Sigh, since when did Davis suddenly become this dangerous line-drive extra base hitter? Geezus, they must do something to the hitters water in Detroit to suddenly make them AS caliber hitters after years of failure.
Just an observation about JRam, he seems to have a good eye as to what is a strike and what isn't but has anyone else noticed that he seems to do what Brantley used to do as a younger player, SWING AT EVERY STRIKE!? Seriously, no matter what the count and if he is ahead, he seems to want to swing if it is in the zone, even if it is not the best pitch to hit. Brantley eventually changed, so there is definitely hope for JRam, especially considering his history of adapting every level, but just something I noticed on Gameday. Oh and Walters has problems making consistent contact with ANY pitch. It actually seems like he is better making contact with breaking pitches than fastballs. First AB he whiffed on a 93 MPH fastball down the middle, this time he whiffs on another fastball.
2-0 count to JRam, who wants to bet he swings if it is a strike. Yup, fouls off a 91 MPH fastball, down the middle but a little up in the zone, not exactly his wheelhouse. Swings at another pitch in the zone, fouls it off. What did I tell you? Then he swings at a borderline fastball up in the zone and lines it in an area that Martinez can't get it and has a double. Brantley works the count 3-1 but swings at a 95 MPH fastball up and in and can only GO to 2B. Sigh, would have rather Brantley taken that pitch for a strike.
@#%@^@$ freaking Rangers, have 1st and 2nd and no outs and Vargas Ks the next batter LOOKING on a 88 MPH fastball! SERIOUSLY?! Geezus, and of course the next batter makes contact but all it does is make it two outs and 1st and 3rd. Productive out by the previous batter would resulted in a runs scored.
Big inning for Salazar, 2-3-4-5 due up. Come on Salazar...you can do it. can't believe I am saying this, but channel your inner CC. Get Hunter to get himself out, keep the hard stuff up, the slow stuff down. OK one down... Now Cabrera, just throw soft stuff low and away, hard stuff in and up. He will probably single, but most likely not homer.
Oops I was wrong, 1-2-3-4-5 up. Kinsler down on a high fastball that is lined to LF. Sigh, Salazar doubles up on the slider down and away and Hunter reaches down and hooks it back up the middle. 1 on 1 out for Cabrera.
Like I said, fastballs up and in, slow stuff down and away. Cabrera likes hard stuff low and in, even really far in. I Guess if you throw it that far down, he can't get to it that easily. OK alternating eye levels with the fastball...good idea.... Slider starting waist high should do it. Or a change up down and over the plate! That is some pitching, if he was hitting location each time, great mixture of eye levels and bringing the off-speed when you needed it! Now VMart, just throw up and in, let him get a bat on it and count on your defense. Fastball down the middle...dangerous...maybe 6 inches higher? Changeup/slider low and in, nice thought, just held it too long, bad release point. 95 MPH fastball at the knees...nice and safe...just don't let VMart foul off too many pitches...let him put it in play, there you go, get his timing off a little with a changeup in the zone, but he puts it in play up the middle but right to Bourn for the last out!