The last time we saw Kenny Rogers in games that counted, he was pitching 23 consecutive shutout innings in post-season 2006. Today, he had his 2007 debut after undergoing surgery to clear up a blood clot in his shoulder. He was back to his cool, calm self again after displaying rare emotion last year in the playoffs. Regardless of his demeanor, he picked up right where he left off with 6 shutout innings allowing just two hits and no walks. Rogers, Jason Grilli, Bobby Seay and Eulogio DeLaCruz and three relievers combined on a two hit 5-0 shutout over the Braves.
It was a scoreless pitchers duel between Rogers and Atlanta starter John Smoltz for 5 innings. Then the Tigers exploded for all 5 of their runs in the 6th inning. Magglio Ordonez plated the first run with a two out single. Carlos Guillen followed with a two run double and Pudge Rodriguez added a one run double. Brandon Inge capped the scoring with a single.
Ordonez gave the Tigers and their fans a big scare when he was hit on the hand with a pitch by Chad Paronto in the 8th inning. Thankfully, x-rays later revealed that there was no break and that it's just a bruise. He is listed as day to day and he expects to play tomorrow.
One interesting side note was Wilfredo Ledezma's Braves debut. He struck out the side in the 9th.
Tomorrow afternoon, it will be Justin Verlander versus Kyle Davies at 3:55 on the dreaded Fox game of the week. By dreaded, I mean that the game will be blacked out for most Tiger fans living outside of Michigan.