This post was supposed to be all about the stupid/funny things that Rod and Mario say on a daily basis. Their often silly banter is a constant source of delight for us. However, while we were taking notes, Rod said something so unexpected (and so true!) that this post had to be about it.
Rod said, "I'm not gonna say it too loud, but I'm gonna say it anyway. Avila is hitting like he wants to go to the All-Star Game."
Avila at the All-Star Game? At first this sounds ridiculous, but the more you think about it, the more realistic it seems. Here are three things that you may not know about our precious little Avi, who, after he woke up from his beginning-of-the-season slump, has been hitting and catching like a real champ.
1.) Avi has the second most RBIs and the second most homers on our team, after (you guessed it) Miguel Cabrera. This is an amazing feat considering the slow start he had to the season. Avila only had seven home runs last year. This year, he already has 6. His 23 RBIs are more than Austin Jackson's, Magglio Ordonez's and Scott Sizemore's combined.
2.) Avila leads all AL catchers in slugging percentage, RBIs, home runs, doubles, OPS, and is tied with three others for the most games played. Although his average hasn't quite caught up yet, he is hitting like a beast, and if you look at the last few games we've played, he's been one of the few that has been carrying the tigers offensively. During the time when V-Mart was on the DL, we needed him to step up to the plate and play like a champion. He did.
3.) In case you haven't noticed, Avila has caught some pretty awesome games this year (including the NO-HITTER). Despite some issues early on in the year, his defense has been pristine. And some of the games that he's called have been excellent. One thing that you can say for our pitching is that our starters (with the exception of some hiccups with Cokehead) have been pretty good. Obviously most of this has to do with the pitchers themselves, but let's not forget who has been giving the calls from behind the dish!
All this adds up to one pretty phenomenal catcher, and the realization that a certain amount of nepotism can be a good thing! Where'd he come from? We don't know, but we certainly hope that he's here to stay. So, we beg you Detroit, cast your vote for Avila for starting catcher in the all-star game! It's early May, and much can still go amiss, but wouldn't it be lovely if he went? We haven't been this excited about a catcher since the days of good ol' Pudge.
In other news, we just wrapped up a fantastic road-trip, and the Royals are next on the hit list. Now would be a perfect time to wrack up some more wins to put us in good standing in the central. Also, JV pitches the first game of the series. Anyone else feeling back-to-back no-hitters?