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Pre-Game Warm-Ups - 05/11

Where Was This Guy in the World Series?

I'm a bit late with this, since the game was almost 24 hours ago, but as I watched the Tigers smack their former pariah, Jeff Weaver, around like a racquetball, all I could think of was the fissure in the world order (or maybe the space-time continuum) that allowed this guy to pitch so well in Game 5 of last year's World Series.

Consider this: Weaver gave up six runs in five innings, and actually saw his ERA drop (from 15.35 to 14.32). Let that swirl around in your head for a minute. This is the same pitcher who gave up one run in eight innings in the championship clincher for the Cardinals. And now, Lookout Landing's calling him the worst starting pitcher the Mariners have ever had.

Maybe this is an irrelevant point. The Tigers' bats were so out of whack that they probably weren't capable of beating any pitcher in that series. (If you doubt that assertion, I present Jeff Weaver as Exhibit A.) But that was last year, and the Tigers and their former ace are quite obviously moving in different directions.

I don't have any grand revelation to share here. It just makes me wonder, "What the #@$%?!"

That's Why They're Paid the Big Bucks:

Did you catch this insightful observation by Rod Allen early in yesterday's game?

"The Mariners have three Joses in their starting lineup: Jose Vidro, Jose Guillen, and Jose Lopez.

Even better may have been Mario Impemba's response:

"Sprinkled throughout."

I'm not trying to trample on Awful Announcing or Fire Joe Morgan territory. I actually like Mario and Rob, and think we have it pretty lucky as hometown announcers go. (At least we don't have Hawk and DJ, and I will always be grateful for that.) And I know when you have to talk constantly for three-and-a-half hours, not everything out of your mouth is going to be a gem. If I were in the same position, I'm sure I'd make some observation like, "Why does Jose Guillen always look like he is about to kill someone?" or "Why does Adrian Beltre always look like he has to drop a twosie? These guys use the bathroom before games, right?"

But "they have three Joses" is something I would expect my sister to say when we go to a ballgame in a couple of weeks. In fact, I predict she'll ask me "Why does he spell 'Shawn' as 'Chone'?" when we see the Tigers play the Angels. (By the way, if anyone knows, e-mail me. Lil' Sis will want an answer.)

... And the Voice of Ernie is Heard in Our Land:

I'll have to make sure I record the telecast of that May 24 game I'll be attending, as Ernie Harwell will be the guest television analyst for the Fox Sports Detroit crew. Harwell fills in for the aforementioned Rod Allen, who will be attending his son's high school graduation. It will be his first full game broadcast for FSN since 2003.