Right-handed starter Chris Lambert, right-handed reliever Freddy Dolsi, lefty reliever Clay Rapada, catcher Dusty Ryan and infielder Mike Hessman were called up to Detroit August 31. With the Tigers in need of depth, it isn't a surprise why they chose these type of caliber players. Surprisingly, normal call ups, infielders Mike Holliman and Jeff Larish and outfielders Clete Thomas and Brent Clevlen weren't called up to the big club. Tigers manager Jim Leyland refused to speak about the players that were not called up.
September 3, the 30-year old Hessman proved to be a good call up for the Tigers. In his first three at-bats he grounded out, first-pitch pop fly and struckout. The fourth time, however, with Gary Sheffield in scoring position, the Olympian wasn't to be denied. After a called first strike and a fouled fastball, it seemed Angels reliever Justin Speier had Hessman's number. After a few more foul-tips, Hessman connected of the ninth pitch--which was a slider-- sending it deep to left for a two-run home run. The Tigers ended up winning the game 9-6..
Back in Toledo, the Mud Hens finished their season out strong with a 3-0 win against Columbus. Virgil Vasquez went the distance pitching none innings while only getting hit off of five times and threw only one walk and striking out five to gather his 12th win of the season.
The 'Hens didn't complete a fourth consecutive West Division title, but should be proud of what they have accomplished this season. Not only did they sellout the majority of their games, they also provided Detroit with a string full of options in the their rotation, bullpen and everyday lineup. Records were broke, fans were happy and Toledo has a bright future in the years to come with its plentiful talent throughout the farm system.
The 'Hens ended their season respectable at 75-69 (.521); 13 games out of first place on which Louisville (88-56) claimed. At home Toledo was 38-34 and on the road they were 37-35; showing they were equally aggressive no matter where they were at.