After being quiet for the first 2 games of the series, the Tigers bats came to life today as they defeated the Athletics 10-4. Kenny Rogers needed the hitting support as he had his third straight mediocre performance allowing 8 hits and 2 walks in 5 2/3 innings. He has now pitched fewer than 6 innings and allowed 4 or more runs in each of his last 3 starts. His ERA has gone from 3.17 to 3.85 during that span. Roman Colon helped to bail out Rogers by pitching 3 1/3 innings of scoreless relief.
Rogers got even more help from his offense which scored 10 runs on 13 hits after scoring a total of 4 runs in the first 2 games of the series. Chris Shelton got his team off to an early 2-0 lead with a two run single in the second. Shelton is still getting a lot of criticism from message board fans for his late spring slump but he has actually done well the past 3 weeks. Since June 15, he has batted .292/.375/.508 in 19 games.
A player who has slumped more recently is Craig Monroe. Monroe has batted .215/.220/.342 in 23 games since May 27. Going into todays's game, he was batting .246/.282/.449 for the season. Today, Monroe doubled, homered, scored 2 runs and had 2 RBI. The streaky Monroe typically does better in the second half. His monthly splits for 2003-2005 combined look like this:
Hopefully, today's game is a sign that he's ready to go on one of his good summer streaks.
Other players with multiple hit games were Ivan Rodriguez with 3 hits, and Curtis Granderson and Carlos Guillen with 2 apiece. Inge hit his team leading 17th home run of the year. It was a well balnced offensive attack today.
The Tigers get a day off tomorrow followed by a 3 game weekend series at Seattle. The three day all-star break starts on Monday. It was announced today that Magglio Ordonez will replace the ailing Manny Ramirez on the all-star roster. Ordonez joins Rodriguez and Rogers as Tiger all-star representatives. Those are not the three players I would have selected from the Tigers. I believe that three Tiger starters (Justin Verlander, Jeremy Bonderman and Nate Robertson) have outpitched Rogers and that two Tiger position players (Granderson and Guillen) have outperformed Ordonez and Rodriguez. The whole selection process is flawed but I won't complain much because it's really just an exhibition game and with the Tigers finally in a pennant race, the game seems even more insignifant than usual.