|Final - 5.27.2012||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R||H||E|
|WP: Brayan Villarreal (1 - 1)
SV: Jose Valverde (9)
LP: Matt Capps (0 - 3)
Thursday afternoon, Detroit had its ace on the mound in the afternoon. The ace gave up two runs. The Tigers scored one. The Indians scored 11 runs for the series, yet swept it from the supposed Central Division favorites. Needless to say, things looked dire.
In the past, a trip to Minnesota wouldn't have helped matters. The Metrodome would have teased and tortured, and Detroit would likely have limped out with no more than a win. Fortunately, the Twins play at Target Field now, and they barely resemble the Twins of old. So the Tigers scored 16 runs during the first two games of the series, then rallied in the ninth for the series sweep now that Minnesota's new closer isn't nearly as steadfast as Joe Nathan.
Will this be the weekend that changes everything? You just never know in baseball. But I did think back to May, 2011. The Tigers were swept by the Indians (then lost a game to the Yankees), before running off 10 wins in their next 11 games. During that period, Detroit went from 8 games out of first to 3.5. The Tigers are just 3 games out today.
Nuts and bolts recap:
Tigers 4, Twins 3: Detroit sweeps Minnesota
There were certainly some rather Tiger-esque concerns, the lack of power, for one. Detroit did not hit a home run during the first 26 innings of the series, until Miguel Cabrera's go-ahead, two-run shot in the ninth inning Sunday. The Tigers also left 10 runners on base Sunday, reverting to their ways of old after stranding just nine during the first two games.
But pitching again was solid: The Twins scored 11 during the series. Prince Fielder seemed to find a way to get on base every appearance at the plate. Quintin Berry got on base frequently and showed how nice a little speed can be. The top of the lineup had continued success, while a few batters at the bottom came through at times, too.
Twins or no Twins, Detroit had to start somewhere. There might be stumbles to come. It wouldn't come as a surprise at all. But for a weekend, the Tigers looked more like the team they were thought to be than than they did at any point since the opening week.
That's definitely a good thing.
Quintin Berry - 3 hits, walk, 2 stolen bases
Miguel Cabrera - GW HR, 2 hits
Prince Fielder - 2 hits, 2 walks
Don Kelly - GIDP, 0-for-3, popped up a bunt
Ryan Raburn - 1-for-4, GIDP, defensive miscues
Brennan Boesch - 0-for-4, 7 LOB
GAME 46 POG
Octavio Dotel edged out Prince Fielder by just five votes out of 380.