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Jim Thome makes history with home runs 599 & 600 as Twins knock off Tigers 9-6

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Final - 8.15.2011 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Minnesota Twins 0 0 3 0 0 3 3 0 0 9 11 1
Detroit Tigers 1 0 2 0 0 2 1 0 0 6 11 2
WP: Francisco Liriano (8 - 9)
SV: Joe Nathan (10)
LP: Rick Porcello (11 - 8)

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BOX

KEY STAT

Rick Porcello's line: 6 IP, 6 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, 1 HR.

Porcello's WHIP and ERA are up to 1.42 and 4.98, respectively.

After his great July, Procello has been anything but in August, especially so in his last two starts. His season ERA has risen by nearly a full 1/2 run since dominating the Angels on July 29th. Who's kidnapped the good Porcello?

To quote Jim Leyland in the post game presser, "Rick just wasn't good tonight. He made too many bad pitches."

That's why Jim makes the big bucks.

KEY PLAY

Jim Thome hitting back-to-back home runs, a two run shot in the 6th, and a three run game clincher in the 7th. They not only won the game, they were home runs 599 and 600 for his long, Tiger killing, career.

KEY THOUGHTS

Kudos to Thome for hitting his historic 600th home run. He's always been a class act. But did the homers have to come in Detroit? As much as Thome has killed the Tigers over the years it's like twisting the knife after being stabbed. Thome only enhanced his reputation as a Tiger killer with a 3-4, 5 RBI, 2 HR night.

Kudos to Tigers fans for giving Thome a fine standing ovation for his historic achievement, despite it all but costing the Tigers a shot at the win. Classy.

For a pitcher who supposedly has so much potential, Daniel Schlereth (who gave up Thome's 600th, which felt like fait accompli when the big man came to the plate) sure doesn't show said potential...ever. Despite bouncing up and down between Detroit and Toledo, he still doesn't know where the ball is going when it leaves his hand. I don't care if Schlereth has a "live arm" and is left handed, his propensity for walks (two of which preceded Thome's dinger) kills the Tigers.

Delmon Young made an excellent first impression on Tigers fans. He went yard in his first at bat wearing the olde English D. Young also added a single, giving the Tigers pop out of the 3rd spot in the batting order for the first time...well, since anyone other than Magglio Ordonez was hitting 3rd.

In the NHL, a Gordie Howe hat trick is scoring a goal, recording an assist and getting in a fight, all in the same game. Tonight, Ryan Raburn committed an error, struck out, and hit a solo home run..otherwise known as the Ryan Raburn hat trick.

Raburn was hearing it from the fan base tonight, especially after his flying out after booting a double play ball in the previous half inning. The Tigers fans favorite scapegoat responded by...tipping his cap.

The less said about the Tigers' infield defense...the better. The Tigers' 3rd inning will be used as exhibit A when baseball historians describe to future generations how not to play defense.

Despite catching what seems like his 50th game in a row (actually 11), Alex Avila had three hits and was run over by Ben Revere while blocking the plate as he tried to stretch a triple into an inside the park home run. Avila got the out, then tripled to deep right center in the following inning. After his three hit game, Avila is hitting .415 with a .520 OBP for the month. It's official. Ironman Avila is a God amongst men.

And don't tell me your heart didn't jump into your mouth when you saw the collision. With Victor Martinez unable to catch while nursing a bad knee, and the Mud Hens' Omir Santos on the DL, the Tigers are a heartbeat away from Don Kelly or Max St. Pierre being the number one catcher.

The White Sox and Indians were idle tonight, so the Tigers only lost a 1/2 game of their division lead. They now lead the Tribe by two and the Sox by 3.5.

Having lost two in a row, it's up to Justin Verlander to be a stopper on Tuesday. So what else is new?