No, YOU haven’t posted any Rick Porcello links
You have probably noticed I haven’t posted any links on Rick Porcello this year. Or you haven’t because you, like me, are living in a blissful world where the Tigers are definitely going to make the playoffs and Rick Porcello doesn’t have 21 wins.
After Monday’s majestic display, a game where he not only told Manny Machado off but completed an 89 pitch complete game, Porcello has the Red Sox positioned to take the AL East.
Even more than that, he has entrenched himself in the Cy Young conversation. If you told the 2013 versions of ourselves that, the collective laughter would have deafened the city. And yet here we are.
Watching former players is always bittersweet. I generally want them to do well, but who doesn’t love a good “WON THE TRADE” feeling? But I don’t want to jump down the Yoenis Cespedes, Michael Fulmer rabbit hole with this one. Let’s just be happy for Trick dicky portabello Porcello.*
Probably time to move Victor
Victor Martinez is struggling, and his prominent position in the line up is costing the Tigers runs. Kurt has a great article on the damage that is being done by a stubborn Ausmus.
Saturday Martinez went 0-for-4 and grounded into a double play. That dropped his average during the past three weeks to .179 with just three extra-base hits, and that was his fourth GIDP during that time, as well. Despite having the likes of Ian Kinsler, Cameron Maybin and Miguel Cabrera batting in front of him, Martinez has just one RBI since Aug. 25. That RBI came on a solo home run.
The effect on the team has been noticeable. Since Aug. 26 Detroit is averaging 3.4 runs per game. This is a team that averaged 4.7 runs up until that point — while slugger J.D. Martinez was sidelined for more than six weeks and Nick Castellanos was missing three more.
For a team struggling to get base runners, it can’t afford those kinds of numbers out of the clean up spot. The idea of a change seems to be spreading after a lackluster weekend and while Ausmus continues to hold pat, I simply can’t imagine that lasts.
Chill out, Gary Sanchez
It appeared that Michael Fulmer had the AL Rookie of the Year won, and then Gary Sanchez started hitting home runs. And kept hitting runs. And has refused to stop hitting them. Now we have a bit of a debate on our hands.
I do not have the ability to be unbiased on the subject, but as a full season rookie posting a 3.00 ERA who has carried a beleaguered rotation to a wild card spot deserves the award. I, of course, see the merits of Sanchez’s bananas stats and the fact that he has also carried his team toward a wild card spot. But 40 games is just too small of a sample size. Also, go Tigers.
This not the sound a baseball bat should make
No exaggeration, I spit up some water when I watched that yesterday morning. When the Marlins inevitably decide to offload his salary they should probably send him to a familiar trade partner. Which is us. I’m talking about the Tigers
Speaking of which ...
Sure, we will take Jose Fernandez, too. MLB Trade Rumors takes a look at the variables the Marlins have to weigh when deciding to keep Fernandez:
The question for the Marlins, ultimately, is multi-faceted. Can they win with their current roster, which has had success at times but lacks for starting pitching depth and has needs on the left side of the infield? Would they be better off — in the long-term, but perhaps also even in the short-term — to swap Fernandez out for a huge return of talent? If they want to keep him, can they afford what it might take to keep the Cuban-born star in Miami?
What appears to be the logical choice is to ask around and see what offers teams present, and then decide that way. But the team has had a rocky relationship with the star and would be wise to handle their interactions carefully. Further upsetting Fernandez and then trying to sign him would not produce the results they are hoping for.
Theo Epstein is the man
And Exhibit C is this extremely well done profile by ESPN Wright Thompson at ESPN. I can’t wrap my mind around the fact that he might end two 100 year droughts.
For your free time
The Reds broke the ‘96 Tigers record for HRs allowed. Thanks, Reds! Despite that, Joey Votto, still good. The Mets and Indians are without their best pitchers heading into the playoffs. How pitching rotations line up for MLB Wild Card game hopefuls.
Baseball is awesome part 1.
(H/T anonymoussuitbuyer on Reddit)