RealClearSports
Advertisement

The Corner


June 1, 2009 8:56 PM

4 games up on June 1? Suck on it experts.

Remember all the shenanigans we heard during Spring Training? The Tigers can't pitch. The Tigers can't field a ground ball. The Tigers only score runs in meaningless games. They're slow. They're old. The were a 2006 flash in the pan. Well to you my friends, I say shame on you.

Meh, in all honesty I didn't see this coming either. Even in my own preseason ranking I had them finishing 3rd. I, as many people did, thought the pitching was just too thin. But Justin Verlander has returned to the pitcher that we saw in 2006. He is pounding the strike zone, and working with a fire in his eyes. Rod and Mario mentioned the other day that on days that he pitches he walks around the clubhouse with earphones in and basically doesn't say a word to anyone. He is zoned in until his start is over. It has been showing. Edwin Jackson has been much more than we could have hoped for. Hat tip to the person who saw the type of pitcher Edwin could turn into and persuaded Dowbrowski to pull the trigger. He and Verlander are as powerful a 1-2 punch as you can find right now. Then there is Rick Porcello. How good is this kid going to be? Not as good as David Price you say? Well shame on you too. I think he could be better. He is solid.

Ryan Perry has been impressive. His fastball amazes. He is part of a bullpen than can kill you with speed. Perry, Joel Zumaya and Fernando Rodney have given me reason to believe in the later innings. I can finally forgive Fernando for that stupid hat now too. Just continue to keep our leads, and you can wear a damn fedora for all I care.

The biggest ray of light I can see is the contributions from the "little guys." In 2006 we saw production from Timo Perez, Brent Clevlen, Alexis Gomez and Matt Stairs. This year, we've seen a lot of energy coming from Ramon Santiago, Clete Thomas and Josh Anderson. This is coming from a team that has already lost Marcus Thames and Carlos Guillen for extended periods of time too.

This next week will be a HUGE test. Frickin' Red Sox and Angles. Bah. If they can get through this week, than I will truly have a belief in this team.

-s

A Member Of