A Detroit Tigers Blog with a Feminine Touch

Sunday, April 29, 2012


Well. We needed to get at least one win in this series, didn't we? Going 1-6 in our own homefield (with a humiliating sweep by the Mariners) and losing a game we should have won to the Yankees was bad enough.The worst, however, came at 3 AM Friday morning when our own Delmon Young was arrested.

This has been a tough week and a half. Losing three series in a row--and going a depressing 2-8 during that stretch--hasn't done much to raise our morale. We know we've been preaching that the Tigers will get it together, it's only April, blah blah blah. All this is still true, and we are 99% confident that our team will eventually figure their shit out and comfortably win the division. And if we win tomorrow, we will technically be above .500 for the month of April. And looking at our ridiculous hard April schedule contrasted with a much-easier May, this can only bode well.

Like we said, however, we've got some major things to figure out. Max Scherzer, for instance. He seems to be reverting back to his old schizophrenic self, and now we're just waiting for that game when it all clicks for him and he starts pitching like Ace #3 again. For now, however, its frustrating watching anyone not named Justin Verlander, Drew Smyly, Octavio Dotel, or Duane Below pitch. Our relief core has been mediocre at best to abysmal at worst.

The hitters, too, need to start picking it up. Though there has been a few positive signs: (Miguel Cabrera coming back from his slump with a vengeance, Prince Fielder's continued production, Austin Jackson proving himself as a capable leadoff man) the lineup is not clicking as a whole. Yet. Just like last year, we predict they will start really coming together pretty soon. You can only keep hitters as talented as these down for a matter of time, though why they are "down" at all is kind of confusing. We should be murdering opposing pitchers, even at this early stage in the season.

This leads us to the most pressing matter--Delmon Young's arrest. We're not going to go too far into what we think about his alleged screaming of hateful Jewish slurs while extremely intoxicated, and that's mostly because we don't know enough information yet. But if everything said in the papers is true (and according to our hero Dave Dombrowski, it's not) then our opinion of Delmon's character is significantly lower.

Some people wonder if this kind of thing can damage a team, and question whether our clubhouse will rebound from it. Hello? Remember last year when our best player was arrested for a DUI, which was his second brush with the law involving alcohol? Yeah, we do too, and guess what? Our team (and the player in question) bounced back just fine. That being said, this situation is pleasant for no one, and it is one of the last things that our boys need right now. But this is something that they can recover from.

Long story short, we still have a lot (and we mean a lot) of confidence in our team. But this shit ain't pretty, and the team needs to rally around one another in this time of need and turn this slump around.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Random Tiger's Thoughts from Megan: April in the D's First 2012 Game

Hi guys!

So, it's taken me a little while to get this post up, but I was able to go to CoPa for the first time this year, due to a birthday surprise from a couple friends.  Awesome I know. Overall, I was really happy with the tiger's performance. It was the second game of the double-header against the Rangers, so I got to see a Tiger's win, and it was just plain exciting to see JV face off against Feliz in a killer pitcher's duel.  The seats were great, we won the game, and I got to enjoy great company, but there was one thing I could not get over... the overall hatred Tiger's fans seem to have against Brandon Inge.

I understand completely that the guy sucks at baseball right now.  He came into Saturday's game hitting .071.  He'd have to be an anorexic 8th grade girl to even begin to be hitting his weight.  His defense at second base isn't so good that he can hit that poorly. And even though it's the beginning of the season, it is a disturbing trend.  I understand all of this, and I personally would rather have Danny Worth up here than Inge.

I'm not going to constantly heckle the poor guy throughout the entire game though!  One of the girls that went to the game with me was kind of disturbed by it.  She is a diehard Cards fan from St. Louis and felt really bad for Inge.  When other people's fans feel bad for a guy, you know the situation has gotten out of hand.  It's okay to boo him when he misplays an easy ball. If he strikes out for the third time in one day, groans of disappointment are acceptable.  But what's sad is that people were heckling him before he even started to play.  I guess that as a Tiger's fan that doesn't have the privilege to attend many games, I don't want to spend my time harassing my team.  I'd rather heckle the Rangers.  I don't see what real Tigers fans have to gain from bothering Brandon throughout the entire game. I doubt it's going to make him a better second-baseman.

The thing that shocks me most about this whole "We hate Brandon" trend is that he was one of the most beloved players one or two years ago.  There are those who have always hated him, but as loyal fans, I honestly don't think we should be kicking the guy while he's down.  I mean, he doesn't have to play for the Tigers, but Jim Leyland doesn't need a belligerent "YOU SUCK, BRANDON" to tell him that. Let Brandon play the game, and Leyland will decide whether or not Brandon plays at Comerica or  in triple A.

Other than that, I had a fabulous time! I was kind of obsessed with the new huge Tiger sign on top the new huge megatron-thing. It's really cool!

Rant over.  That was kind of a bad loss to the mariners, but I'm still optimistic about the season! Go Tigers!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Good, but not Great. Yet.

Ah, the joys of April (in the D). Teams are just starting out and things can either go great, as evidenced with our boys' recent series at Kansas City, or they can be a liiiiitle shaky, as shown by the four game series with the evil horrible arrogant druggie Texas Rangers. Megan was able to go to Game 3 and see JV and the boys kick some Texas ass (which she will write a review on later) but in the other three games we fans got to see our boys clearly out-pitched, out-hit, and outplayed. DISASTER!

Disaster indeed. At least, that's what the Lynn Hennings of the world would have you think. We're gonna give it to you straight. Our team right now is good, and we have the potential to be absolutely phenomenal, but as of right now we are not better than those dickheads who beat us in the ALCS Texas. In fact, after seeing their crazy-good offense do some WORK against our pitchers in the first two games, we would venture to say that, as of right now, three weeks into the season, Texas has the best offense in the game.

One important thing to note about the paragraph above: we are only three weeks into the season. We are 10-6 after playing Boston, Tampa Bay, and Texas. We should consider it a triumph if we make it out of this month with a winning record. At this point last year we looked about a million times worse, and we ended up wining the Central by fifteen games. So everyone who's losing their s**t needs to take a freaking pill.

We should point out, however, that though our team looks good (but not great) and there are some major question marks (Inge, Raburn, Daniel "ThankGodHesInTripleA" Schlereth), there have been two glimmering, hopeful lights. And those lights belong to these two young men.

Yes, Drew Smyly and Duane Below, the final two candidates for the number five spot in the starting rotation. As we all well know, Smyly got the job and has performed extremely well, putting in two quality starts in a row (and getting robbed of his first win in the second one). He took a pitch in the back (someone's out to get our starters) and had to deal with the aforementioned Ranger's Murderer's Row, but recovered from both of those things and has done extremely well for a rookie starter. We like what we see in him.

Duane Below, who is bound to be overlooked, has also done incredibly well, not allowing a run or even a walk in four relief appearances. His most impressive job came yesterday afternoon when he tossed six scoreless innings against a ridiculous lineup. He looked like he should have that starting job instead of Adam Wilk, who so far looks pretty average in his replacement role for Doug Fister. Please, please please come back soon Dougie.

This isn't going to be an easy month. We have a tough schedule and some ill-timed injuries, but we would much rather struggle in April then in September. This team may not burst out of the gate like those hicks from Texas, but they'll get it eventually. And when they do…watch out.

PS-We weren't aware you could hit the ball of your knee and put it in play!?!?! Amazing!!!!!!!! We would tell Inge to try it, but his are pretty weak...

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

A Team Effort

So, the first two series at home were pretty fun, right? Miguel Cabrera and Prince Fielder, the Dynamic Duo of Super BFF's smashing away. Dramatic, walk-off wins and awesome blowouts. Undoubtedly some fun stuff. Suck it, AL East powerhouses!!!

And then comes Chicago. Suddenly the big boys aren't hitting as much as they're supposed to be. Some of our defense is looking shaky. We're just not getting any productivity due to uncertain swings and bad luck. But we thought we were supposed to be destroying the Central! Everyone panic!!!!!!!!!!

We're kidding, obviously. People who are panicking at Miggy and Raburn and other players' hitting slumps, our somewhat questionable defense, and Jim Leyland's managerial decisions need to take a pill and shut the hell up. Do we sound a little harsh? Well, we mean business on this matter. What this team already realizes and what most fans need to understand is that this is a Group Effort this year, never mind the fact that we're only ten games into the season.

There are indeed some very confusing statistics to these first ten games. After six games of pure hitting prowess, Miguel Cabrera has yet to get a hit in this road trip. Ryan Raburn is hitting a truly awful .065: 2 hits in 31 at bats. And Doug Fister, who we were SO excited to see claim his #2 Ace Role behind Verlander, succumbed to injury early on. Brandon Inge returned to the lineup despite his anemic, pathetic batting numbers. Plus, no starter got a win in the first nine games, and Jose Valverde was doing his best Fernando Rodney Defibrillator Act.

And yet. And yet we are 7-3. Why do you think this is, haters and pessimists? Because we are more than just the Cabrera-Fielder show. Because we have more offensive depth than many initially thought. Because just because our number one closer can't get it done doesn't mean someone else won't.

Have you seen Austin Jackson? We know we talked about it last post, but Lloyd McClendon should be worshiped as a God right now. The eliminated leg kick seems to be exactly what AJax needs to really be a great table-setter. Look at his numbers. LOOK AT THEM. Boy is on fire, and though there is no way he'll keep his offensive production at this crazy pace, expect him to have a much better season than the last one. And what about sweet Rick Porcello? His last two starts have been good, and the one on Sunday was just plain dominant. He's hot, and in more ways than one. Don't forget Juh-honny Peralta, who seems to be slipping everyones mind, and Alex Avila, who hasn't missed a beat off of last season. They're two huge reasons why we have as good a record as we do.

And of course, Justin Verlander. While we shall not speak of the 9th Inning Atrocity vs. Tampa Bay, he has been absolutely killing it in all three of his starts. We didn't initially like Leyland's decision to keep him in last night, and it was terrifying, but Justin said he needed to prove it to himself that he could do it. And that last 100 mph pitch and his reaction was worth every second of torment that the fans went through.

So, bottom line is: if one of the stars (right now it's Cabrera, for reasons unknown) is struggling, don't think all is lost. It isn't. For one thing, we have a great all-around team. For another, he's Miguel Cabrera. He will fix it. He's in good hands. And as far as Raburn goes--we know. It's annoying. But we feel that he will come around too, even Saint Lloyd has to get in there and change some of his mechanics.

The season's very young, folks. Of course we're going to have some rough edges at the start. But look at our boys' potential, and look at what they've already done. This is going to be a good year. So relax, and enjoy the show.

Friday, April 13, 2012

A Recap from Rosie

After facing the Boston Red Sox and the Tampa Bay Rays, our Beloveds are 5-1. Did you predict that?

I think it is safe to say that we have the potential to rock this year.  Despite the catastrophic what-the-f***-are-you-doing-Justin blow up that was the 9th inning the second game with the Rays, I'm so proud of our boys. They've really been making the world a better place for us Tiger fans recently. 

 Have a really hard day at work?  It's ok, the Tigers are on TV and they're winning. Have a hard exam at school?  It's fine, because the comedy duo that is Rod and Mario will put a smile on your face in two seconds flat.  Feeling like crap because your boyfriend broke up with you? It's cool gurl! As we speak there is a stunning shot of JV's perky baseball behind filling your screen.  His pitching is pretty wonderful too, I guess.  The Tigers have been the cure-all for every evil and there have only been five games.  That's right. Let that sink in.  We are only five games into the season.  

Think about what that means, folks. Even though JV hasn't gotten the wins, you just need to look at the stats. Opening day was a two-hitter.  It was a shame he couldn't get the W, but his pitches were masterful.  Wednesday was the same. He threw 83 pitches and allowed ONE HIT in eight innings.  It was sick.  It was nasty. It was freaking beautiful. We have a winning horse, and we know it, and everyone else know's it, and he's only just left the gate.  Isn't he supposed to have kind of a down month in April as well? 

Then there is Porcello.  He is not only a gorgeous specimen of man, but he looks like, this year, he'll be a gorgeous specimen of pitcher, too.  He allowed 2 runs in his 5 innings.  Not too shabby for the first time out.  AND SMYLY!  Besides some first inning shakiness, he did stellar in his Big League debut. He allowed only one run in his four innings, and the boys showed up to support him.  WELL DONE.  

Scherzer. Well. This is a happy, lighthearted post, and it's still early, so........well done bullpen! Glad to know you've got what it takes to save our starters when they implode.  But in all seriousness, we think Scherzer will right himself, and when Fister comes back, our starting lineup will definitely get those wins they so justly deserve.

Our hitters are stellar as well. AJax, Juh-honny, Brennan, Andy: they're ALL HITTING. Good ol' Lloyd is surely sleeping well at night, and he's a saint for what he did with Austin, who's playing out of his mind.  Everyone is contributing, and it seems like whenever we get one or two men on we are actually sending them HOME.  Our Big Three Hitters, Miggy, Prince, and Avila, seem to be having their own private home run derby that none of the opposing pitchers knew about.  It's kind of scary admitting it out loud, and I feel like a need a block of wood, or a tree, or an entire forest to knock on, but our team is looking scary good. It's really nice looking at the leader boards for the AL and seeing a player from the D on every one, if they aren't at the very top. if Our pitchers are pitching (nastily), our hitters are hitting (consistently), and the team chemistry and handshakes are alive and well.  We rule.  

It is really, really fun being a Tigers fan right now.  Do you think we can keep it up all season long?  I do. Sure well have our dips and trouble spots and (hopefully minor) injuries, but this shouldn't be too big of a problem. 

I think everyone is starting to realize that the Tigers are one of the strongest forces to be reckoned with. Other teams will try to rise to the occasion, but I believe our boys can make them fail.  It's time everyone realized that this powerhouse team is here to stay.

Oh, and as always, follow us on twitter at @April_in_the_D !!!!

Monday, April 9, 2012

The Boys Are Back in Town!

Well, we can honestly say that this first series against the Red Sox was one of the most exciting that the three of us have seen as Tigers fans.  It had everything...dominant pitching, powerful slugging, and comeback wins that made all true fans want to weep with joy.  All this against a not-too-shabby Boston Red Sox team.  There have only been three games this season, and we don't want to make predictions too early, but we thought we'd point out a few of things that we saw in these first three games that we hope continue for the season (and some things that we hope are changed immediately!)

Good Thing 1: Justin Verlander
To be honest, throughout this offseason we were kind of worried about our ace JV.  Not that he was slacking, but the talk from all of our news sources showed him making commercials and playing golf as opposed to throwing and practicing like he did last offseason.  However, if its possible, Justin looks even better than the beginning of last season. He seems to have finally found a sort of solution to his April woes, and we just hope that the trend continues.  He deserved the win, yes, but what's most important is that he gets off to a good start.  He wasn't MVP for nothing. When Justin does well, the team tends to do well too.

Good Thing 2: Big Bats
Our offense seems to be as powerful and dominant as it was in Spring Training.  We put up big numbers in games two and three of this series, thanks most notably to Miguel Cabrera and Prince Fielder, but to all the other players as well. It was truly a team effort to win, especially in game 3, when every player who came up to bat had at least one hit.  At this point, there is no obvious weak link in the Tigers lineup, and Prince Fielder seems to have settled many people's fears about being able to hit home runs in the expansive fields of Comerica Park, blasting two home runs in game two.  Even when our pitching struggles, it seems like we will have our bats and clutch players (@Miguel!!!) to bail us out.

Good Thing 3: Team Chemistry
Was it just us or did it look like they were just having fun out there?  From the good natured jokes at Miguel's ungainly foul territory catch to Prince talking about how he loves his new club, it just seems like our boys are on a mission.  Many people think that Chemistry doesn't matter in baseball, but we really believe it does.  It also makes for a much more entertaining game when players are rooting for one another, and we're looking foward to a fun season!

Best Thing: Austin Jackson
Rod has often stated that Austin (and Curtis before him) is the "Straw that Sitrs the Drink."  We're not entirely sure what that means, but from context clues, we gather that when Austin is playing well, the team plays well. Austin Jackson has been freaking amazing this week.  In the game on Sunday, he was 4-6 with a double and three singles, and he had the hit that one the game in walk-off fashion on Thursday.  He's been coming up clutch, and he seems determined to shut up the haters by having has few Ks as possible. We hope he keeps doing well!

Concern 1: Dougy F.
We don't want Doug to be injured, mainly because we don't want Andy Oliver or any of the other no-name shmucks who got beat out for the starting job to come up to the big leagues.  They are not reliable, and its conerning to have the player we were most excited about at this blog be injured. Thankfully, it's the beginning of the season, and we can deal without him for a little bit, but we hope he recovers ASAP.

Concern 2: Max Scherzer
Max will be one of the keys to the Tiger's success this year, but judging by his performance on Easter, we're going to need a different key.  We really like Maz Scherzer... if you don't follow him to Twitter then you should because he's crazy hilarious... but he needs to get his act together to help out the team.  We think he can; this was just his first game of the season afterall. Max has good stuff, and we really just want to see him use it.

Concern 3: Brennan Boesch
Brennan played pretty poorly.  Everyone else in our lineup was hitting like a champ all weekend, but Brennan was the lone weak spot in the lineup. He has the power and he has the skills, but it just didn't work against the Red Sox. Once Brennan gets hitting (and we belive he will) we will have a pretty much unstopable lineup.  Its also a hard place to be hitting, but that's why he has to do a good job and get on base for Miguel and Prince.  Its times like this when we miss the best 2nd man the Tigers have had in a long while in Placido Polanco!  Brennan can do it though...we have faith!

Anyway...it was kind of a crazy first series, but we were glad to sweep the Sox and and show those clueless FOX commentators a thing or two.  What are they going to do now that both the Sox and the Yanks are 0-3? 

Here's to a fantastic rest of the season!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Let's Get This Party Started

He Means Business.
(We don't know who this should be credited to, but it is too awesome not to use).

It's that time of year again, folks: the fantastical month of April, and as everyone who has access to the television station FSDetroit knows, that means it's also April in the D time! Loathe it if you must, but the three of us personally love all the songs, commercials, and fanfare (except the FSDetroit Girls, who, by the way, have added another girl to their ranks). It just signifies that the most glorious of sports has returned to us: Major League Baseball.

Just typing those words are exciting. Seriously. In two (long, interminable, excruciating) days we will see Justin Verlander, Miguel Cabrera and Prince Fielder take the field together for the first time. The incredible lineup we have been looking forward to seeing since January will be smashing baseballs out of the park. Our park, with it's enormous, brand new big screen. Be honest: how excited are you that we will soon hear the melodic  "RAWWRARARAWRARR" of our feline mascot when we score our first run?

The roster is "set", but not really;  Drew Smyly (!!!) is making his first start in AAA, so as soon as he is called up for his first big league start on April 12th, either Clete Thomas, Andy Dirks, or Danny Worth will go down to the minors in his place. Even more annoyingly, Brandon Inge is on the DL, so it will be about two weeks, so poor Danny gets a tease of Major League action before he has to go back down. So our 25-man roster is really a 27-man roster. Fun. Our money is on Dirks, not Clete, to make the final cut. But we shall see. Tigers management has surprised us before…

Our pitching IS set, however, and we couldn't be more pumped about it. Our starting rotation is one of the best in the majors, and definitely the best in our division, and it will be exciting to see what the three-headed monster of Valverde, Benoit, and Dotel can put together in the bullpen, which says nothing of other strong additions "Insane" Phil Coke, Luis Marte (replaced by our sweet Bumble Below due to an unfortunate injury), and Collin Balester. Daniel Schlereth is the one guy we're still on the fence about, but there's one of those guys in every group, right?

Last year we had surprises, and a lot of them, from Alex Avila to Doug Fister. This year we already have some surprises (V-Mart, anyone?), but mostly we have expectations-a lot of them. It seems like a given that we'll take the Central, and if we don't, heads will roll. But we, like most Tiger fans, want more than just another pennant. We can see the potential glory this year,  with our powerful bats and solid bullpen and ace starters. Sure, there are some question marks, but this is going to be a crazy fun year. We can just tell.

In celebration of the beginning of one of the most exciting seasons in a while (and our 100th blog post!), the three of us decided we need to do something besides grinning stupidly and breaking out into excited, hysterical giggles. So, with trepidation, we made the executive decision to start…a Twitter page. Though social media scares us a little (stupid, since we're bloggers for chrissakes, but whatevah), we'd be thrilled if you guys could give us a follow. Now you get to hear our ridiculous ramblings all the time. How exciting is that?!?!?!!?!? Oh, you are so welcome.

Happy April everyone! Be sure to follow us @April_in_the_D if you can stand it. And seriously, thanks for everyone who's been reading for over a year. This little blog has turned into so much fun for us.

See everyone on Opening Day!!!! Who else just cannot WAIT for Rod and Mario???