Saturday, June 05, 2010

Valverde Saves Tigers Again

The Tigers topped the Royals 4-2 tonight to even the series at one game apiece.  Here are some notes:

Mario Impemba and Rod Allen kept remarking how often Justin Verlander was throwing the ball 100+ MPH but, as is often the case, the gun was apparently too fast.  According to Brooks Baseball, he threw only two balls as fast as 100 with a maximum of 101.  He did average 97 MPH though which is higher than his  95.5 average for the season.  He was not really dominant striking out only four.  He was effective enough to pitch seven innings of two run ball with both runs scoring after he left in the eighth.

Joel Zumaya came in with two runners on in the eighth but couldn't find the plate.  He was taken out of the game with some kind of finger injury.  It appeared to be a blister but you never know with him.  Hopefully, he doesn't miss much time.

Jose Valverde was forced to come in before the ninth inning and pitched 1 2/3 innings for the first time this year.  He ended the eighth by inducing a double play and then pitched a scoreless ninth.  He has not allowed a run in 22 consecutive appearances since his only blown save of the year on April 7 versus the Royals.  That streak ties Todd Jone's team record.  Valverde now has an 0.39 ERA for the season.

Miguel Cabrera blasted his 17th home run tonight and now has eight in his last ten games.

Alex Avila had two hits in three trips and now has 9 hits in his last 24 at bats.  With Gerald Laird still in a horrific season long slump, Avila will see increased playing time as long as he keeps hitting.

Scott Sizemore has not sulked with his demotion to triple-A Toledo.  He had four hits tonight to rise his batting average to .380.  His only position is second base though, so he'll stay in the minors as long as Carlos Guillen remains healthy.

Armando Galarraga is currently the feature story on CNN.COM.  What were the odds of that happening when the season started?  

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