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It's officially a winning streak! Phil Coke leads Tigers to 3-0 win

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Final - 4.14.2011 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Detroit Tigers 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 0 3 4 0
Oakland Athletics 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 1
WP: Phil Coke (1 - 2)
SV: Jose Valverde (3)
LP: Tyson Ross (1 - 1)

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KEY STAT

Phil Coke's pitching line: 7 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 2 K

KEY PLAY

Ryan Raburn's 7th inning, two out, RBI double to score Ramon Santiago, breaking up a scoreless tie.

KEY THOUGHTS

Yes, it's an official winning streak! A streak of three. One win can be a fluke. Two is a trend. But three? That's a streak! After the slow start to the season, putting a few wins together was much needed, if only to calm the badly frayed nerves of the Tigers' fanbase.

Coke has a sore left arm and a sore throat tonight...from pointing out lazy fly balls to his outfielders while yelling "Can of corn!" The A's could do little with the converted setup man, a dominant performance by Coke. Going into the season, many thought Coke would be the weak link in the rotation. In posting a 2.25 ERA and 0.94 WHIP since becoming a starter, Coke has been anything but. Admittedly, he has been missed in the pen. But Coke can be much more valuable overall as a middle of the rotation starter. So far, so good for the Phil Coke experiment.

The A's did more than their fair share to give the Tigers the game. A's pitching gave up 11 base on balls, though the Tigers weren't into cashing in on their charity for much of the night. Most glaringly, the Tigers squandered scoring opportunities the A's handed...or should I say, walked...over in 5th and 6th. But the A's were not to be denied. The Tigers manufactured a pair of 8th inning runs without a base hit, with lots of help from the opposition. The A's walked the bases loaded, including Brandon Inge when he was doing he damnedest to lay down a bunt, and gifted the Tigers an insurance run thanks to a botched cutoff throw on Santiago's sac fly.

All in all, it was a good night for Tigers Nation, as the west coast swing gets off to a nice start. But there was a Tiger who had a game to forget. That would be one Victor Martinez, who grounded out to SS and 2B a combined five times. To top off his forgettable evening, V-Mart (who got the start was behind the plate) took a painful foul ball to the nether regions in the 9th. Let's move on...

Official attendance in Oakland was 11,129. Sure, if you counted...there was...what about....nah, there's no good explanation. There were more of you in the game thread than there were A's fans at Oakland-Alameda County Stadium. On FSD, it looked like a ghost town...and I'm being generous to ghost towns.

On a personal note, this is my first baseball related post at BYB since the end of last season. I'm thrilled to be back! I'm recovering well from my health issues, I've badly missed writing about baseball, and I'm looking forward to spending quality time with the best Tigers community on the web!