Good Monday morning. I hope you all had a good weekend, and if you managed to have a fraction of the fun that Alex Ovechkin did during his day with the Stanley Cup then I would say you’re weekend went pretty well.
If you watched any Tigers baseball over the weekend you’ll know that Jeimer Candelario busted out his Candel-stick in the 12th inning on Saturday night and put the Indians down. It’s too bad the rest of the series couldn’t have gone that way. Saturday was a fun win, and that brings to mind something I’ve been seeing a lot of Tigers fans post on the social media lately.
As we move through the season I continue to see some variation of the “This team is fun to watch,” comment. I must say that I don’t agree. Admittedly, Jeimer Candelario is fun as hell to watch. Leonys Martin has been pretty fun to watch. Niko Goodrum at second base? Not so much fun. A Victor Martinez at-bat is a depressing experience, and any situation that has featured Drew VerHagen has been pretty terrible. What this team has is fun players and fun moments, but the overall experience that has lead to the 31-36 record that leaves the team five games out of first place is not something I would describe as fun.
Not quite Fulmer
Pitching coach Chris Bosio thinks he knows what’s going on with Michael Fulmer. While Fulmer has consistently struggled after the 85 pitch mark this summer he has been unable to put a finger on why. Chris Bosio believes he’s still feeling the effects of the ulnar nerve surgery Fulmer underwent last fall. Pinpointing the problem is good. Let’s hope Bosio can get Fulmer throught it. His outing on Saturday looked more like the Fulmer of old.
Positions, picks and grips
This weeks installment of Sunday Notes from the folks over at Fangraphs contains a few interesting Tigers related tidbits. JaCoby Jones talks about Al Kaline’s input on his transition from the infield to the outfield after being traded to the Tigers, Ron Gardenhire show more of the humor that is endearing him to Detroit fans in talking about his son’s minor league baseball career, and Shane Greene shares a bit about where he learned all the different grips he uses for his pitches.
Slip slidin’ away
Shane Greene has had his struggles this season, namely with giving up home runs, and there has been speculation that the trouble is with the slider. That doesn’t appear to be entirely the case. While he has given up two homers on the slider he has given up three on the sinker. Perhaps more telling is that he has allowed six hits with an exit velocity greater than 95 mph and all six have gone for homers. So maybe he does need to look at changing some pitches up, but maybe he’s also just running into some bad luck.
Jonesin’ to be better
JaCoby Jones is going through some early season struggles of his own. Ron Gardenhire sees some similarities in the struggles he watched Torii Hunter go through as a young player. Gardenhire isn’t saying Jones is going to develop into the kind of player Hunter became, but he does see a young talented guy who is trying to figure things out, and he’s going to give him some time to do it.
Jeff Seidel of The Detroit Free Press wrote a pretty great piece on the decision of Blaise Salter to retire after suffering from a couple of concussions. Salter is the grandson of Bill Freehan, and watching his grandfather deal with Alzheimer’s played a role in his decision. Concussions are no joke, and while it may be difficult to walk away, Salter is ready to move on to the next phase of his life.
Around the horn
Baseball is awesome
Here’s your third round pick, Kody Clemens, smoking a home run in the Austin Super Regional against Tennessee Tech.