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Open Thread - Game 51: Tigers (29-21) at Devil Rays (21-28)

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Jeremy Bonderman (3-0, 3.57) vs. Casey Fossum (3-4, 7.15), 7:10 p.m. EST

I don't know how you reacted when the D-Rays scored those two runs in the bottom of the ninth last night, but I'm glad I don't have any pets. I was ready to kick something.

Yesterday, I was just a touch (but only just a touch) sarcastic about Chad Durbin being the stopper for the Tigers. Tonight, I'm being completely serious. This is what the ace of the pitching staff is supposed to do, so it's good timing to have Bonderman on the mound. And if he pitches like he did last Thursday (after the first three batters he faced), when he dominated the Angels over eight innings, everything should turn out nicely.

Maybe Bondo can whip out some of that complete game magic he wielded against Roy Halladay in the second week of the season. His team needs it. Four straight losses is the Tigers' worst streak in 2007.

After two rough starts, Fossum came back strong in his last effort vs. Seattle. Giving up only one earned run in 5 1/3 innings to a lineup that's been scoring bunches of runs over its past five games is pretty impressive. However, Fossum did take the loss in that one, as he received no run support. If you look at his previous nine starts, you'll see consistent inconsistency. When Fossum previously allowed only one earned run, he then gave up five and six earned runs, respectively, in his next two starts.

Short Hops:

▪▪ Placido Polanco will return to the Detroit lineup tonight, in his usual spots batting second and playing second base.