That's right, that's a picture of Barry Bonds. A 1986 Topps picture of Barry Bonds, in case you didn't recognize it, but if you're an American male born within two years of me either way (1977), of course you recognized it. Barry Bonds is playing tonight, and love him or hate him, you know you want to see what happens. I, it must be admitted, love him. I refuse to believe that his steroids are any better than anyone else's steroids, I refuse to care about all the anecdotal evidence that paints him as a prick, and so I'm left with prodigious home runs that far outstip any one else's prodigious home runs in this era of unprecedented power. And how can you not love that?
But the Tigers are playing tonight, and they're who we're here to talk about. There is interesting stuff happening tonight at the CoPa, too:
--The Tigers have won two in a row.
--Chris Shelton and Brandon Inge may be breaking out of long slumps, and Placido Polanco and Carlos Pena continue to mash the ball.
--Roman Colon will look tonight to extend his personal best of four innings in a game started for Detroit (I don't want to set expectations too high).
--His opponent, Kyle Lohse, last made news for destroying manager Ron Gardenhire's office door with a bat. The two say there are no hard feelings, but that's sort of hard to believe.
Placido Polanco, by the way, is batting .348 for the Tigers since coming over from the Phillies. That would be good enough to lead the American League, if he qualified. On the season he's up to .336, which would also be good enough for the AL batting crown -- again, if he qualified. Placido is 8 for 10 in his last two games, and has pushed his career batting average over .300. Even if all of his offensive value is predicated on hitting singles, and even if singles-hitting is notoriously luck-driven, and no matter how likely a high batting average is to drive us to place too much hope in our big-domed second-sacker for next year, congratulations, Placido.