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Tigers 5, Rockies 0: Neither rain nor Rockies can keep Max Scherzer from his strikeout rounds

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Final - 6.17.2012 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Colorado Rockies 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 7 1
Detroit Tigers 0 1 3 0 0 1 0 0 X 5 15 0
WP: Max Scherzer (6 - 4)
LP: Jeremy Guthrie (3 - 6)

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The Detroit Tigers cruised past the woeful Colorado Rockies 5-0, taking 2 of 3 on the weekend. Winning pitcher Max Scherzer struck out 12 in 8 shutout innings to move to 6-4 on the season. Allowing 4 runs, 3 earned, in just 3 innings pinned Jeremy Guthrie with the loss, falling to 3-6.

Ramon Santiago had the big hit of the game for the Tigers, a bases loaded 2 RBI single in the 3rd inning. Qunitin Berry joined in on the fun with 5 singles, going 5-5 on the afternoon. Marco Scutaro and Tyler Colvin each had a pair of hits for the scuffling Rockies.

The afternoon started off right the Tigers before the game even started. The Rockies were forced to scratch number 3 hitter Carlos Gonzalez and his 1.023 OPS from the lineup due to a sore hamstring.

Scherzer pitched out of a 1st inning runner on 3rd with 1 out jam, helped out by the Rockies giving the Tigers a free out with a sacrifice bunt. NL style baseball...I don't get it.

The Tigers took a 1-0 lead in the 2nd inning, but did so in the AL way - with an extra base hit. Don Kelly singled with 2 out, bringing up Gerald Laird. G$ was $, drilling a double into the left field corner, Kelly scoring without drawing a throw.

The lead was stretched to 4-0 in the 3rd, thanks to something we've rarely seen this season, a hit with the bases loaded by a Tiger. Berry led off with a single, Guthrie balking him to 2nd. With 1st base open, the Rockies pitched around Cabrera. Prince Fielder, who owns one of the hottest bats in baseball as of late, doubled to right center, scoring Berry.

With 2 outs, the Rockies broke out more strategy, intentionally walking Jhonny Peralta, loading the bases for Santiago. Despite the bases being clogged with 3 quite large men, Santiago foiled the Rockies' sinister plan by singling up the middle, bringing home Cabrera and Fielder.. Yes, sometimes baseball teams do get base hits with the bases juiced, despite what the Tigers would have you believe.

While the Tigers' offense was busy knocking the ball all around Comerica, a dominant Scherzer was showing why he was 3rd in the AL in strikeouts going into the game, sending 6 Rockies back to the dugout through 3 2/3 innings.

But at that point, the the long threatened rain arrived. After a 53 minute delay, the Tigers decided to leave Scherzer on the mound. Not a problem, Scherzer inducing Chris Nelson to ground into an inning ending fielder's choice with runners on 1st and 3rd.

Apparently Scherzer was insistent on remaining in the game, rain be damned. When asked after the game if there was never a question about his coming back to pitch after the storm, Scherzer replied, "Yeah, otherwise I was flippin' chairs."

Singles by Jackson and Berry, followed by a Cabrera RBI double, upped the Tigers' lead to 5-0 in the 6th.

Scherzer was just as good, if not better, after the lengthy rain delay. striking out 6 Rockies from the 5th through 8th innings. His 12 strike out day has Scherzer with 100 on the season, just 3 behind AL leader Justin Verlander.

Brayan Villarreal finished off the Rockies with a 1-2-3 9th.

Despite 2 months of disappointment, this may turn out to be a fun summer after all. Things are finally looking up for the Tigers

Bullets:

  • Putting Friday's ugly loss behind them, Tigers have won 2 in a row, are 7-3 in their last 10 games, and winners of 3 straight interleague series. This is their longest sustained stretch of good baseball since starting the season 9-3.
  • The Tigers are now only 2 games under the .500 mark at 32-34, and 3 1/2 back of the 1st place White Sox.
  • Playing the NL has apparently cured what has ailed the Tigers. Let's hope the cure sticks once interleague ends.
  • Fielder has been on a tear, hitting .431/.602/1.032 since May 14th.
  • Berry over the past 2 weeks - .182 BA, .250 BABiP, slash line of .333 /.227/.561. Today he was 5-5, all singles, with a stolen base. Berry is what he is, that being an occasional spark to the offense, not an everyday player.
  • More Berry: Despite having been a Tiger for only 23 games, he leads the team in stolen bases with 9.
  • Happy Father's Day!

In case you missed it:

The Tigers have announced uber-prospect Jacob Turner will be recalled from Toledo later this week in order to start on Thursday against the St. Louis Cardinals. No word from the team as to who will be bumped from the 25 man roster to make room for Turner.

Alex Avila is expected to start a 3 game injury rehab assignment with Toledo on Monday. Avila is aiming for a return to the everyday lineup this Friday night when the Tigers start a 3 game series in Pittsburgh.

3 ROARS:

Quintin Berry: A 5-5 day, the first 5 hit game from a rookie in MLB this season.

Max Scherzer: 8 shutout innings, 7 H, 0 BB, 12 K, standing ovation after the the final out of the 8th from the Comerica Park crowd. Definitely roar worthy.

Gerald Laird: 3-4 day for G$. Could this be the day he breaks through with a player of the game win?

3 HISSES:

Brennan Boesch: The Tigers' right fielder was hitting .317 with an .853 OPS over the past 2 weeks. Today, he was an ugly 0-4 with 8 left on base. After grounding out with the bases loaded this afternoon, Boesch is now 0-for-6 with 0 RBI this season. Boesch like a box of chocolates, you never know what you're going to get from week to week, or even at bat to at bat.

Ryan Raburn: Pinch hit for Boesch in the 8th with the bases loaded...and struck out.

NL style baseball: Your number 2 hitter is bunting in the 1st inning? Ridiculous.

GAME 65 PLAYER OF THE GAME:

Coming off the DL to throw 6 shutout innings in a 4-1 win made Doug Fister a no-doubt PotG with 82% of the vote.