As the Tigers begin their final homestand of the season, I think it’s safe to say there are two ways to go with watching the remainder of these games:
- Hope the Tigers win a bunch, just by having fun and letting off steam.
- Hope the Tigers literally do not win another game at all in order to secure a better draft pick next season.
Both these notions have merit, and as a result, it’s easy to enjoy either outcome. I realized, while watching the Indians sweep the Tigers and make modern history by collecting their 21st consecutive win, that I wasn’t bothered by the losses. I’m not bothered by the Tigers’ place in the standings. I won’t be bothered if the White Sox sweep this series.
These games have stopped counting towards anything, and as a result, they’re just kind of fun to watch for the sake of watching baseball. That’s why we’re here, isn’t it? Because we love baseball. Sure, watching a winning team is more fun, but there’s something to be said for abandoning expectation and just going with the flow wherever it takes you.
While watching the Tigers score two back-to-back home runs in the bottom of the third inning I was struck by the sheer joy on Nick Castellanos’s face as he went through the dugout collecting high fives. I realized in that moment I didn’t really care if the Tigers won or lost the game, because at this point, those results are moot.
The regular season is almost over, with a mere two weeks of play remaining.
Let’s abandon expectations and just enjoy what’s left, no matter the outcome.
Now, about that game...
Chad Bell was, as the title suggests, not good. In 3.1 innings of work he gave up six hits, and collected six earned runs (though in fairness Saupold was on the mound for several of those runs). Bell did manage four strike outs and only one walk, but was forced out of the game earlier.
Warwick Saupold entered the game in the fourth. Made it into the fifth and gave up three runs, with a mere one strikeout. He was replaced by Jeff Ferrell who gave up a run of his own. 10-2 White Sox.
Newbie Jeimer Candelario continues to be a solid addition to the roster, getting a home run in the bottom of the sixth, his first as a Tiger. Jose Iglesias hit a near home run, that would have changed the score to 10-6, but the double still counted for an RBI, and brought the score to 10-4. They were unable to make any more headway in the sixth in spite of multiple baserunners.
Things went downhill further in the seventh inning with Joe Jimenez giving up three more runs (again, some earned runs while another pitcher was on the mound), sending the score to 13-4. Zac Reininger continues to struggle, but the same can be said for a lot of the bullpen. At least he didn’t have any earned runs, which is more than the four pitchers before him could say.
Things got switched up a bit in the eighth.
Hicks is catching.— Matthew B. Mowery (@matthewbmowery) September 14, 2017
Navarro at 1B
Collins in RF
Victor Alcantara became the sixth Tiger to pitch in the game. He made short work of loading the bases. He gave up another three runs. 16-4 White Sox.
Candelario got another run off an Andrew Romine RBI. 16-5.
Shane Greene came on in the ninth for what was obviously not a save situation. But Greene hasn’t appeared in a game in almost a week so it seemed like a low-stress opportunity to get him some work. Greene, following the trend of the game, loaded the bases. Why not? Greene hit a batter with the bases loaded and was pulled, bringing in Blaine Hardy, the eighth Tigers’ pitcher for the game. Hardy escaped the top of the ninth unscathed.
Ian Kinsler made things a little more interesting in the ninth with a solo home run. See! Games are still fun!
impressive as hell to outhomer the opposing team four to two and still lose by 11 runs— uɐɯssnS ʇʇɐW (@suss2hyphens) September 14, 2017
Efren Navarro was like “Fun? Heck yeah, you want a hustle triple? I’ll give you a hustle triple.” Good thing, too, because then he scored on a wild pitch. Baseball is ridiculous. I love it.
Tigers lost 17-7. Let’s do it again tomorrow.
The Tigers’ broadcast team for trying to get audiences hyped about the prospects with a fancy graphic showing how many there are.
Jeimer Candelario, who had a mighty fine day and made that prospect graphic look better as a result.
The yellow line in the outfield. An inch lower and it would have been a home run.
Tigers’ pitching. 17 runs on 25 hits. Woof.
STREAKS & INFO:
#Tigers have had 28 games where starter has gone fewer than 4.0 IP, 4th-most in MLB.— Matthew B. Mowery (@matthewbmowery) September 14, 2017
A dozen of them since the trade deadline, six in Sept.
First career four-hit game for Yoan Moncada, who has three singles since his first-inning HR.— Jason Beck (@beckjason) September 14, 2017