Confidence in the Tigers after just two weeks of baseball does not look good. Fans dropped their opinion on the team all the way down to about 50, which signifies a belief in a third-place finish. I have a feeling if the poll opened today results would have been much better, but after the team opened the season by losing three consecutive series and booting a bunch of errors, it's easy to understand a hit to fan confidence. But that big a hit?
A number of people voted 0 to voice their displeasure in the season, but even without those votes "50" was by far the most popular number. It racked up more than twice the number of votes as any other result.
Should fans have had such a severe reaction to a 3-6 start? It's only natural to feel rather dejected about a season that begins on such a bad foot, of course. Yet I don't have to remind you Sparky Anderson thought you shouldn't judge a team until about 40 games into the year. At the start of the season, it's easy to see one or two things go right or wrong and decide they're a trend that cannot help but continue.
So after three series of baseball, players that are in line for 150 home runs or 300 RBI -- or the opposite, a sub-Mendoza year from the cleanup batter. Your No. 1 pitcher might have an ERA of 10 and your No. 5 guy an ERA of 0.00. Those kinds of things can make a team appear to be better or worse than it will be over the course of 162 games.
That doesn't mean you can call every start a fluke or say a team has no holes. It doesn't mean the information we learned the first 10 or so games is worthless. The Tigers' defense has been a bit questionable, just as we expected it to be before the season. That's liable to be a subplot to follow throughout the year. Rick Porcello holds one of the keys to the season, and he has started off on shaky ground. He'll need to do better.
On the other hand, all the fears over the seventh inning killing the Tigers season were overwrought. For one, how often is that even an issue? And for two, the Tigers were down a couple of middle relievers to begin the season and the most visible implosion was a special case.
So after nine games, the Tigers looked sunk. Some people obviously freaked out. After back-to-back walk-off wins, the natural tendency might be to rush back in the other direction. Me, I'm holding pretty steady. I might have been an 80 before, but I'm still feeling like the team will compete for the division in the end.