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Morning Prowl: Justin Verlander, Al Alburquerque, Brennan Boesch

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Bill Welke shows fans umpires do care -- even when it's wiffle ball | The Detroit News
A nice Monday morning roundup by friend of the blog Tony Paul features a story of how MLB umpire Bill Welke helped settle a Kalamazoo whiffle ball question, Johnny Damon's Hall of Fame credentials, and a couple of likes and dislikes about the Tigers.

MLive: Does Al Alburquerque have a shot at the All-Star Game?
Matt Sussman, working off a topic started by Fox Sport Detroit's announcing team over the weekend, wonders if Al-Al is impressive enough to make the all-star game despite not pitching in the ninth inning. Or eighth, for that matter. Rod and Mario kept calling Alburquerque a setup man, which is a bit weird since he's not even that. But to answer the question, I don't think he has a shot. Great stats. Fun story. Glad he's on our side. But will be enjoying a vacation during the break.

Record pace for Al Alburquerque " Baseball-Reference Blog " Blog Archive
How good is Al-Al, by the way? B-Ref (thanks to the Fanshot from Grzesio) writes that he is on pace to break Eric Gagne's records for batting average and slugging allowed in a season of 50+ innings. Beyond that he's striking out 15 batters per nine innings, which almost makes you forget about the six he's walking.

The Daily Fungo: June 19, 2011: ‘Sports Reporters’ Gutierrez Says Verlander Best Pitcher In Baseball
The Sports Reporters isn't exactly ESPN's answer to Meet The Press. But it's a slightly higherbrow fare than the rest of ESPN's debate shows, even if they do inexplicably invite Mitch Albom to talk about sports despite the fact he's long past the days of being an actual sports writer. But I digress. Israel Gutierrez, who seems like a rather intelligent guy, called Justin Verlander the best pitcher in baseball and The Daily Fungo has the video.

The Daily Fungo: A Look at Jackson’s Offense and a Lamont Rant
Mike has guest blogger Nick Shlain write about Austin Jackson and Gene Lamont. In short: Jackson good, Lamont bad!

Unhittable: Tigers' Justin Verlander a constant threat for a no-no - MLB - Sporting News
The Sporting News' Stan McNeal writes even at Coors Field the no-hitter alert begins when Justin Verlander takes the mound.

Brennan Boesch brings hot bat to homecoming as Tigers head to Los Angeles | MLive.com
Two notables: One, Boesch is heading back to the ballpark he grew up watching the game in. So that's always a nice story. Two, the Tigers travel well. The number of fans in Denver came through loud and clear. Of course, I've always thought Michigan and Colorado were like sister states or something, judging by the number of mountain-imprinted license plates I used to see in northern Michigan every year. Denver would definitely be high on my list of cities to live in if I was outside the state. Anyway, the Saturday and Sunday games were the Rockies' first sell-out since opening day. So that's pretty cool.

Rockies-Tigers series at Coors Field serving as Schlereth family reunion - The Denver Post
Not that Mark Schlereth has anything against Detroit, but he'd rather see Daniel Schlereth pitching in a Rockies uniform. Some Tigers fans might agree...

Down on the Farm: Flying Tigers Impressive in the 50th FSL All-Star Game
JayRC has a report from the Florida State League's All-Star Game, which featured four Flying Tigers

Detroit Tigers - MLB | Tigers have two young guns at third | The Detroit News
Lynn Henning writes about Francisco Martinez and Nick Castellanos in his minor league report.

Dodgers Freefall Continues With 7-0 Loss To Astros - True Blue LA
Sounds like a Tom Petty song is necessary at Chavez Ravine as the Dodgers had lost all five games of their home stand until finally winning Sunday.

Cleveland Indians replace hitting coach Jon Nunnally with Bruce Fields - ESPN
A familiar name is now the hitting coach for the Tribe.

Ask A Twins Coach - Twinkie Town
The Twins have moved out of last place in the AL with a boatload of wins lately. But with an off day today it's time for an advice column.

Camden Chat on Jeopardy
Fellow SB Nation blog Camden Chat was a clue on Jeopardy last week. I guess you could figure that out from the headline, huh?

Baseball Prospectus | Resident Fantasy Genius: When Pitchers' Stats Stabilize
For you aspiring saber types or just the curious, here's an updated study by Baseball Prospectus on how long it takes for pitchers' stats to stabilize -- in other words, when things become less of a fluke and more of a fact.

Anchor Of Gold - For Vanderbilt Commodores Fans
By the way if you're looking for a team to root for in the College World Series, I'd recommend Vandy and Tigers' draft pick Aaron Westlake. After earning their first CWS appearance ever this year, they beat North Carolina in the opener and face Florida tonight. By the way, they're doing some incredible coverage over at our SB Nation sister site, Anchor of Gold.