OAKLAND, CA - MAY 13: Andy Dirks #12 of the Detroit Tigers hits a single against the Oakland Athletics during the first inning at O.co Coliseum on May 13, 2012 in Oakland, California.
AL Central Standings
Andy Dirks is making hitting in the No. 2 spot look easy, Rogo sets the Detroit Tigers to a scene from South Park, and John Axford likes to write with hearts. These stories and a Monday-morning groan in today's Morning Prowl.
Tigers' Andy Dirks thriving at No. 2 spot in the lineup -- Detroit Free Press, Shawn Windsor
I know Jim Leyland needs to rest Dirks on occasion because of his sore hamstring, but I am in no way opposed to him playing everyday otherwise.
Your South Park Tigers -- DesigNate Robertson
Because who doesn't love Tigers baseball set to South Park?
To baseball fans, statistical analyses can't obscure true magic of the game -- The Detroit News, Jerry Green
"Now, amid all Sabermetric claptrap, we are being treated to a Major League Baseball season for the ages. It is the sort of season that grabs any longtime baseball lover with sensational joy of the game, without the mashed numbers."
The 2012 BYB Meet-Up: Ticket payment info -- Bless You Boys
Just a reminder to get your money to Alli if you're attending this year's meet-up! As of last week, there were 29 tickets available still. The deadline is July 4!
Expectations. -- MarioImpemba.com, Mario Impemba
"I told the story during the broadcast today about riding the press elevator with a member of the Oakland media and he asked me what was wrong with Justin Verlander this year." This kind of stuff is so frustrating, because I'd argue that Verlander is actually pitching better this season than he did last.
Ramon Santiago: Tigers' Newest Elder Statesman -- Where Have You Gone, Johnny Grubb?, Greg Eno
"If Ramon Santiago were a country, he’d be Switzerland. If he were a jacket, he’d be a 40 regular. If he were a bandleader, he’d be Tommy Newsom."
Let’s Give Them Something to Talk About -- Brain Matters
Phil Coke's Brain gives us the latest on Microwaves, the Chilean Miners, and the Gulf Oil Spill. He also might throw in a few baseball references.
Around the AL Central:
Twins 4, Blue Jays 3: Dozier's First Homer Helps Back Diamond -- Twinkie Town
"Twins split the series with the Jays, taking the final game 4-3."
Royals 9, White Sox 1: Even a mother couldn't love this -- South Side Sox, Jim Margalus
"Another struggling Kansas City pitcher held the White Sox in check as the Royals took two out of three in Chicago."
Royals Avenge Duffy's Elbow, Thoroughly Throttle Evil Rivals -- Royals Review
"As the sixth inning drew to an end, Deanna Duffy knew something needed to be done. Heading down to the clubhouse from her seat that her loving son had secured her for Mother's Day, Deanna called on the team aside as they came back to the dugout from the field."
Elsewhere in baseball:
Casper Wells' 2-run-homer at Yankee Stadium helps spoil Pettitte's return -- dailygazette.com
"I got her a Burberry bag last year," Wells told reporters. "So this year I got her a home run at Yankee Stadium." I suddenly feel like a horrible daughter.
What is the best swing-and-miss pitch in baseball right now? -- The Hardball Times, Jason Dubbar
To the surprise of no one, none of the Tigers bullpen is on this list.
John Axford leaves note for Milwaukee media after blowing his 49-save streak -- Big League Stew, Kevin Kaduk
The fact that he used a heart to signify the letter "o" in "love" makes him my new favorite person.
Kemp due for MRI after tweaking hamstring -- dodgers.com, AJ Cassavell
"Dodgers center fielder Matt Kemp is adamant in saying he's not going on the DL, but an MRI on his strained left hamstring Monday morning will undoubtedly have more say in that decision."