First of all, I don't know if anyone noticed, but I neglected to update each team's record in yesterday's open thread headline. In fact, I had the Red Sox with the Twins 17-19 record. Oops. I apologize if I caused anyone to think Boston had somehow lost eight wins in the standings. Unless anyone just figured I'm an idiot. But I appreciate no one calling me out on it, since that's kind of embarrassing. Or maybe no one pays attention to the headline. Anyway, let's carry on.
Only once this season have the Tigers lost three games in a row, but that's what they're facing tonight against a pitcher whose stats say he's currently unbeatable. Wakefield is only one game above .500, yet has almost been the dictionary definition of "quality start" in his seven previous appearances. He hasn't given up more than three runs in any of his starts, and has pitched shutout baseball over his last two games (14 innings).
However, Wakefield might want to steer clear from Magglio Ordonez, who has a .433 (13-for-30) average against him.
Verlander hasn't given up more than three runs this season, either. But after watching how the Red Sox made Nate Robertson work last night (115 pitches in five innings), he might be thinking about how Seattle did much the same thing to him (98 pitches in 5 1/3 innings) in his previous outing. But he's also won his last two starts, and has pitched very well on the road.
▪▪ Joe Sheehan takes a closer look at the Red Sox at Baseball Prospectus, and says their record is no fluke. Right now, they're winning games in almost every way you can imagine.
▪▪ Did Jim Leyland really refer to Daisuke Matsuzaka as "that Matsuki guy" before last night's game? Ha. Leyland also said Boston's Josh Beckett (whom the Tigers are missing in this series) is currently his choice to start for the American League in the All-Star Game.
▪▪ Mike McClary has posted Episode #13 of The Detroit Tigers Podcast.