Wednesday, August 7, 2013

As Close As We'll Come

I really love this team - in general, and specifically this team - but there's no doubt about it...the Tigers are damn good. Super damn good. They are amazingly good. They got it all, really. Pitching, hitting, and their defense isn't half bad.

So when the Tribe faces off with the Tigers and throws a rookie kid out there and he gives them a hard time, and then we get 14 hits and make it go 14 innings and only lose by 1 well, good. Good game tonight, on all fronts by our guys. There was no blowout, no huge mistakes, no disappointment - not even a bad bullpen! Even the bad stuff looked good. The Tribe was good but the Tigers were just that much better.

What can you say about Danny Salazar?
Heck yeah he's not scared! Also, he throws like a dang slingshot. Upper 90s, upper 90s, upper 90s and if he can't get you out like that then - bloop! 87 MPH changeup. Ha! I mean, how are you supposed to follow that nonsense?? He struck out almost every Tiger at least once tonight, some of them 3 times! And it didn't take much work to do it - he only had 103 pitches after 7 2/3 innings. Not bad for a guy who is "coming off" Tommy John surgery and was kept to 55 pitches his last time out! And his second major league start? No, this guy is not scared!

He left one out for Miggy - after striking him out 3 times - and that was the end of that fun. But what are you going to do? He's the damn best hitter in baseball. He doesn't get to be that way by striking out 4 times in a game!

Totally stoked about Salazar, like I'm stoked about the new Doctor, Peter Capaldi. Sad to see both Kluber and Matt Smith go but new isn't necessarily bad. And both Salazar and Capaldi have proven themselves to me! (I'm guessing Hulu streams of The Thick Of It are through the roof this week!)

How about that bullpen today, eh? They brought in Rich Hill first which was smart. Mainly to face lefties but also to get him out of the way I bet. He gave up a hit before finishing off the 8th. I cringed! Then he came back out for the 9th and gave up a walk. I squirmed. Then a single. I yelled! Then he was gone.

Check this out from friend of the blog @Twimpus/SMacR:
HA! Exactly!

Cody Allen came in to get the 9th finished and he ended up with the bases loaded. But he got two fly-outs to end it, big thanks to Drew Stubbs who was out there being fast as hell in right field!

Then Perez was up for the 10th and everyone was all "ugh, Perez" and I was like "Heck yeah, Perez!" He struck out their catcher Perez but the last pitch was wild and Perez-the-catcher went to first. Then he struck out Fielder. Then he picked off Perez - heck yeah! Victor got a hit because he's Victor, but Rage got the last out with no damage done. So, whatever, haters! He picked off a guy at first!

Joe Smith gave up a walk and a hit but I felt like he looked great. Maybe I'm just a sucker for the sidearm (oh yeah, the game was on WKYC tonight - by surprise!) but I don't even know how right handers can tell where the ball is going, coming across his body like that. Austin Jackson looked positively stymied!

Bryan Shaw was the big man in the bullpen, going the longest of all the relievers - 2 1/3 innings. However it was 1/3 innings too long. He gave up 2 hits that turned in to 2 runs and that was all for the game. Marc Rzepczynski (nailed it!) came in to finish and let Shaw's runners score and that was that. Zep hangs on to his 0.00 ERA for us - magic!

Our batters really battled hard tonight. Just some key spots had huge holes. Namely Asdrubal, Santana and everyone who came up in the DH spot (Giambi, Raburn, Chisenhall - not one hit between them!)

How much better do you think we'd be if Asdrubal was hitting .250/1-for-4 right now? That'd be at least one more run per game I think.

I have a theory now...he has braces, I believe, and having braces sucks. I don't care if you're a big tough guy, your teeth are moving around and they friggin' hurt. I don't even know if he has them anymore but if he does, that's exactly his problem and don't let him convince you otherwise. Braces should be for the off season only!

When Michael Bourn came up in the 14th they said he was 0-5 and I'm like "No way Michael Bourn goes 0 for 6!" Well, he didn't. He got a nice RBI double! He had been on base once earlier on the game, on a walk, and came around to score. This time he nearly won the game for us by seriously messing with Joaquim Benoit's head. He was pitching all over the place, being nervous about Bourn's lead at 2nd! In fact he threw a big wild pitch and Bourn went to third. That's our guy!

Oh yeah - also with an outfield assist - AT THE PLATE! Definitely a game-changer, too!

Swisher had a novel night, getting his first hit(s) since 8/2. Not only did he get one hit but he got THREE, going 3 for 4 before being replaced by Stubbs. He did have a costly error, though, because...ugh. Of course he did. But I'll take his 2 doubles and 2 RBI. Dick.

Stubbs went 1 for 3. I think his catches in the outfield were pretty key to the game being so long/so close. He had the chance to tie it up for us in the 14th but it didn't happen. I like the fact that we could all believe it could happen, tho.

Kipnis went 2 for 6. None of his hits resulted in runs or RBI. But I think he and Asdrubal looked pretty tight up the middle there today. No errors and 2 double plays!

Twitizen @sportsyelling threw this up tonight and had a caption contest. Special:

You'll have to check out her feed to see what the winning caption was. My entry was "You small. Do you even lift?" which was funny because someone had the exact same idea, but went the other way with it. "You're fat. Do you even lift?" or something. Ha!

Brantley was hot as heck tonight, going 3 for 5 with a walk and a run scored. Two of his hits were doubles! He's got 7 hits in his last 4 games! It sucks that he got so many hits and just 1 run came out of it. Oh, baseball...

Santana had a rough night. He only struck out once but he only went 1 for 6. He grounded into a double play and left 3 guys on base (to be fair, Kipnis did the same things too).

Gomes, of course, was a big player in this game...even though my brother picked him up for fantasy! He got a big homer tonight to lead off the third, to tie the game! Later on he got the game-tying RBI on a ground-out with 1 out and Brantley at third. Oh! How we love Yan Gomes!

Mike Aviles was holding down the 9-spot today like a boss! He went 2 for 6 and came around to score both times. He had a big double in the 7th and came around to score on Swisher's follow-up double. Then in the 14th inning he got a 2-out single and then motored around to score on Bourn's double, to put us just one run down. Also, he looked pretty good in the field!

I'm telling you guys - everything looked so good today. It was like a good honest playoff game. If only Salazar hadn't hung that one pitch, or if only we had a little bit of action from the cleanup or DH spots, things would have gone differently. But dang did we get our money's worth! Plus I got to see the whole thing on TV and hear it on the radio and watch along with the Twerps on Twitter. Good times.

And there were "only" 20,000 fans out tonight but it looked like everyone stayed! And everyone did a great job cheering - they were really into it! So good job by everyone tonight - the team, the fans at the park and all of us at home. What a great game!

Tomorrow is ZMac versus RHP 2.85. Don't be scared! Danny Salazar isn't scared! We've got as much chance tomorrow as we did these other 3 games...maybe it's our time.

No Radio Chatter tonight, I was overloaded on media. Hammy really had some good ones towards the end of the game, too. He reminded us that there's still 7 weeks to go, so everyone just calm down! Him and Rosie did a nice job too.

Ok, one more chance - see you there!

No comments:

Post a Comment