Todd Jones and Bobby Seay almost ruined Father's Day in Tiger Town, in typical roller coaster fashion. (If Bruce Banner was a Tigers fan, he'd turn into the Hulk every time Jones comes in for the save.) Fortunately, Alexander and Abigail's dad pulled himself together after some uncharacteristic wildness (though he's been more wild this season than in the past), and finally put a ribbon on a fantastic 10-game homestand.
To repeat a point I made yesterday, that Dodgers team is playing much like the Tigers were a couple of weeks ago. They're not hitting (at least they weren't, until Seay and Jones came into the game), their star players are underperforming, injuries have plagued the roster, and even when something appears to be going well, something else comes along to ruin it.
Case in point: Clayton Kershaw. Typical of his major league career thus far, Kershaw had touches of wildness and threw more pitches than he needed to, but Detroit's hitters weren't touching what he was throwing. Then storm clouds rolled in, and it began to rain. The game was delayed for 45 minutes, which was long enough to call it a day for a young pitcher whose arm is being kept under close watch. Terrible luck for the Dodgers, good fortune for the Tigers.
Chan Ho Park had pitched pretty well in his previous 19 appearances, but came into this game leaking gasoline. The Tigers threw a match at him and he exploded. In just 1 1/3 innings of work, Park served up five runs and eight hits, two of which were back-to-back homers by Marcus Thames and Brandon Inge that blew the game open. Thames' homer was a blast, going to the deepest part of left-center field, toward the flagpole. If you're keeping track (and I know you are), this was the third straight game (and fourth in his last five) in which Thames homered.
That's now six wins in a row, and the Tigers are starting to move up in the standings. The White Sox lost in Colorado today, boosting Detroit to within six games of first place in the AL Central. It might not be the ideal time for a west coast trip, but the Giants and Padres could provide the sort of competition that the Tigers are now defeating. Enjoy some refreshing ginger ale this evening.
For a Sunday afternoon, we had a great turnout in the GameThread - even with a 45-minute rain delay.
Thanks to ThaWalrus9, nerdrock1985 (welcome to the chatter; don't be a stranger!), Zappatista, Grant E., HavocRox, pfuhrmeister (Happy Father's Day - and to all the other dads, as well), cannonad03, ahtrap, spartyboy40, dettigionswings'stons, Tigsfan, rock n rye, LosTigres, and BobbyHigginson for keeping it fun throughout the game. And we all needed each other when it got kind of terrifying in the ninth inning.
Who's planning on staying up late this coming week?