Now that was a thing of beauty, had everything a baseball game should have. Let's put up the fangraph first:
Games like this remind me why I'm a baseball fan. Not even sure where to start in talking about it. I guess I'll start by saying how happy I am that Vernon's back. Watching him is so much more fun than watching Wilk pop out. And with Lind, Wells and Rios, you see an outfield that at least has the potential to be good.
And we now have 4 homeruns this month....in the second inning Lind crushed one. I was starting to worry that he had caught the anti-power virus that has run thru the team, he hadn't hit one out since July 22. He also had gone 3 games without a hit for the first time since his call up in June. He went 3 for 5, score and drove in 2.
The top of our order Inglett, Scoot, Rios and Wells went 6 for 18 today. They scored twice and drove in 4. And Mac was1 for 3 with a run and in the 5th inning he takes a 12 pitch walk. And then in the 7th, the inning we won the game, with Lind on first one out and us down by three, he fouls off 5 pitches in a 10 pitch at bat before he doubles. I love when he hits.
Our bullpen, yet again, was just amazing. League pitched the 7th, he is so good to watch now. Downs pitched a 1,2,3 ninth. He does it so often it is almost boring. And Ryan, Ryan's taken a ton of grief this year and yet he gets his 23rd save against 3 blown saves. How many closers have more than 20 saves with fewer blown this year? He looked strong today.
A couple of moments have to be discussed. In the bottom of the 6th with the game tied Ordonez hits one just over the fence in right, hits a rail and comes back on the field. The nearest umpire, who came down the line to watch, called it in play, not a homerun. The Tigers argue and the umpires get together and get it right. The Cito comes out and really does the right thing, argues 'how can you change the call of the nearest umpire?" "Would you have changed it if it wasn't the home team?".
He has to argue that, but after AJ, maybe tiring, maybe pissed because of the call, maybe out of rhythm from the long wait, gets two quick outs but then gives up a homerun to Sheffield (his second of the game, you think maybe he wants someone to pick him up off waivers?), then Renteria doubles and Cito comes out. Anyone would figure Cito is coming to take him out of the game, but no, Cito hasn't got anyone up in the pen yet. Have I mentioned Cito does a good statue impersonation? Cito gives a few words of encouragement to AJ and AJ, moved by his manager's trust, gives up a double to Inge to score Renteria.
Now, it's obvious to everyone that AJ's lost it, but Inge tries to steal third and is thrown out easy. Now, if I'm manager, I either strangle Inge or pull him out of the ball game. You cannot get thrown out at third with two outs and a pitcher that is struggling. But the Tigers have a three run lead and generally a 1 run lead is enough against the Jays.
But we get into the Tigers' pen. Lind singles, Overbay strikes out. Mac doubles (see above). Inglett grounds out scoring Lind, two run game. Tigers bring in Zumaya (thanks Leyland) Scoot singles, one run game. Rios walks! Wells doubles, scoring two and we lead. Then in one of those managerial moves I never understand, Zumaya, he of the 100 fastball and a very shaky understanding of the strike zone, intentionally walks Stairs. Why? Don't ask we'll take it. Then he can't focus on the strike zone again and walks Barajas on four pitches. But Farnsworth comes in and gets Lind to fly out. Not that it matters, we have a lead and out pen is as good as the Tiger's pen is bad.
We get another run in the ninth, with the help of another intentional walk to Stairs(are managers incapable of learning?) and a clutch single from Lind.
Jays of the Day? Wells (.317 WPA), Lind (.132), Downs (.146) and League (.110). Honorable mention Ryan and Mac. Suckage Jay? Overbay (-.124) a big 0 for 5. Play of the day for the Jays? Wells' two out double in the 7th, scoring the tying and winning runs. Inge's caught stealling was only a -.013 because they already had the three run lead, the game was in hand.
Tomorrow, a battle of lefties; David Purcey (1-3, 7.40, but a good start in his last game, 6 innings and 8 ks) vs everyone's favorite, Kenny Rogers (8-9, 4.92). We've had our troubles against lefties (understatement of the year award?), but our bats maybe are turning a bit? We had a great time in the game thread tonight, 384 comments, record for the month. And had a new name in there, norm depalma, who fit in great. Hopefully tomorrow's thread will be as lively and the game as good.