The annual home run derby the night before the MLB All-Star Game is one of the best events in sports. Even though the event is way too long and we have to endure Chris Berman on play-by-play every year, some of the fondest memories from my childhood as a baseball fan were watching Ken Griffey Jr., Mark McGwire, and the rest of the steroid infused sluggers of the 1990s launch homers into the seats.
Miguel Cabrera has to reason to participate in the HR Derby
That being said, I want Miguel Cabrera nowhere the 2013 edition Monday night at CitiField.
The Week That Was This week started off looking very good and then spiraled out of control and ended in a disaster. The Tigers took the first two on the road in Seattle and were primed to sweep the Mariners with Justin Verlander taking the mound on Thursday afternoon against the M’s. That’s where everything fell off the rails. The Tigers were shut out by Hisashi Iwakuma and the Mariners bullpen, managing only five hits and wasting a 12-strikeout performance by Verlander. Even with the loss, the Tigers had won four of their first six on the road and were looking at the propsect of a winning record on the nine-game West Coast road trip.
Then the team went to Anaheim and everything fell apart. In the three-game sweep at the hands of the Angels, the Tigers went 3-for-26 with runners in scoring position and left 31 men on base were outscored 24-4. The offense which was on fire in the previous week, turned in five consecutive awful performances. In the past five games which spans 54 innings thanks to extra inning games, the Tigers have scored six total runs and were shutout twice and one of those runs was in the 9th inning on Friday night against the Angels while trailing 8-0.
Weekly Record: 2-4 (2-1 vs. Mariners, 0-3 vs. Angels)
Season Record: 9-9 (3rd place AL Central, 1.5 GB of Kansas City Royals
Division Record: 1-2 (1-2 vs. Twins)
The Week That Was The Tigers 2013 season continues it’s pogo stick like trajectory, thus far. The Tigers have not won more than two games in a row at any point thus far in 2013 but have yet to lose more than two games in a row and sat in a first place tie in the American League Central with the Kansas City Royals after action completed on Sunday. The offense (especially Prince Fielder) is finally starting to click on all cylinders as Sunday’s win over the Oakland A’s got the Tigers to two games above .500 for the first time in 2013 but the work from the bullpen has been just awful, as they have blown leads and utlimately taken the loss in three of the five Tigers losses.
Weekly Record: 4-2 (2-1 vs. Blue Jays, 2-1 vs. A’s)
Season Record: 7-5 (T-1st AL Central with Kansas City Royals)
Division Record: 1-2 (1-2 vs. Twins)
There were some broken hearts and puzzled fans when the Tigers made their roster cuts last week that involved sending Quintin Berry, who quickly gained a major fan following last season, and Danny Worth to Toledo while Don Kelly and Matt Tuiasosopo made the major league roster.
Toledo’s on-field performance has been suffered the last few seasons due to Tigers tendency to trade their top prospects away. The Mud Hens have suffered three straight losing seasons, averaging 78 losses per season (they only play 144 games in the International League), bottoming out in 2012 with a 60-84 record.
Things aren’t getting that better for Phil Nevin’s squad, the team is 1-6, and is tied for the worst record in the International League. Here are some updates on some notable former (and future) Tigers.
The Week That Was
The Tigers had a very and up-and-down week, losing two of three to the Twins at Target Field (including Phil Coke blowing a save in the bottom of the 9th to the Twins on Wednesday) and taking two of three from the Yankees at Comerica Park. Both series featured frustrating moments at times from the Tigers offense and bullpen
The regular baseball season is just a long, long grind.
162 games spread over 6 months is a lot, especially when you experience a season like the 2012 Detroit Tigers, where a team that should have won the American League Central running away underachieved for five and a half months and only clinched the division on October 1st, which was the 160th game of the year. Last season was grind to experience and most likely took years off my life.
Seeing as baseball really doesn’t get exciting until post-All Star break and all the trade deadline activity, here are the five most “intriguing” match-ups of the first half.
Boesch was scheduled to make $2.3 million in 2013, or the 16th highest salary on the team. Since they released him today, they only owe one-sixth of that ($383,333). If they had released him before opening day, they would have owed him $575,000. I’m sorry, but the Tigers are not the type of organization that would cut somebody to save less than $200,000 if he had any value.
And that’s really it, Boesch has just no value left.
Baseball at the end of the day is a team sport. Despite all the advanced metrics that try to quantify how good a player is individually, ultimately, one player cannot carry a team for the entire season. Alex Rodriguez’s tenure in Texas proved at least that much. And it doesn’t necessarily means the star players either. We all know what to expect from Justin Verlander, Miguel Cabrera, and Prince Fielder over the course of 162 games. But if these five players have a big season, a return trip to the World Series will be in order.