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Iffy pitching + sloppy defense + quiet bats = 7-3 Tigers loss to Rangers

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Final - 6.8.2011 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Detroit Tigers 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 3 9 2
Texas Rangers 0 0 4 1 1 0 1 0 X 7 12 2
WP: Alexi Ogando (7 - 0)
LP: Phil Coke (1 - 6)

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BOX

KEY STAT

Team RISP: 1-for-9

I hate it when that happens.

KEY PLAY

Trying to get the Rangers' Craig Gentry out at the plate, 3rd baseman Don Kelly threw the ball away with the bases loaded. Kelly's error allowed a pair of runs to score, kick starting the Rangers, and sent them on their way to victory.

KEY THOUGHTS

Kelly gave the Tigers a lead with a solo home run in the 1st inning (We were working on this week's podcast at the time, it was the most excited I've heard Allikazoo in five weeks of recording!). But what Kelly giveth, he taketh away...with the two run error. When the Error Wizard is your most productive Tiger with the bat (2 RBI), you know it's going to be a long evening.

The Rangers were finally able to get Ryan Raburn (0-1) and Brennan Boesch (0-5) out. Raburn's hitting streak ends at seven games, and Boesch's at five.

Phil Coke made his first start after returning from the DL...and pitched like he hadn't thrown much in two weeks, as the numbers attest (5 IP, 10 H, 6 R, 4 ER, 3 BB, 0 SO). But it's only one start, so let's hold off on the "Send Coke to the bullpen" memes. The back end of the bullpen has been sorted out, and Coke is still the best option at the bottom of the rotation, as we know Andrew Oliver isn't ready. Overall, Coke has pitched better than his 1-6 record.

After destroying Rangers' pitching to the tune of 38 hits, the Tigers could do little with starter Alexi Ogando. He pitched 7 2/3 innings, scattering six hits. The Tigers' bats were bound to cool off. It's not surprising Ogando was the pitcher to do so. Tonight's win raised his record to 7-0, and lowered his ERA to 2.10. You know, sometimes the other team just plain pitches better than you do.

I'm not going get bent out of shape over the Tigers losing. There's been far more good than bad over the past week. The bats came alive, the starting pitching has been quite good, the bullpen is coming together, and the Tigers are so close to 1st place, you can taste it. The Tigers had to head out on the road to play the White Sox and Rangers, won both series, finished with a 4-2 record, and now head home only 1.5 games back of the Indians. That is a a very successful road trip!

One sloppily played loss doesn't change that fact in the slightest.