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Entries in Detroit Tigers (64)

Tuesday
Oct302012

Sergio Romo had the Tigers Slip Slidering away, until...

I'm really still in awe of Sergio Romo's virtuoso performance in the 2012 World Series. Romo faced nine Tigers, struck out five of them, allowed four balls in the air, and earned three saves. Most recently, in 2007, Jonathan Papelbon had three saves in the Red Sox four-game sweep of the Rockies. Mariano Rivera had three saves in the 1998 Yankee sweep of the Padres. And in 1996, John Wetteland had four saves in the Yankee Series victory over the Braves, but that was a six-gamer. 

Romo needed a tidy 43 pitches to retire the nine Tigers.

In Romo's first appearance in Game 2

Quentin Berry led off

  • 0-0 - Strike Looking on a 87 MPH Four Seamer - Outside
  • 0-1 - Fly Ball Out on a 88 MPH Four Seamer - Over the Plate

Austin Jackson was up next

  • 0-0 - Strike Looking on a 78 MPH Slider - Over the Plate
  • 0-1 - Strike Swinging on a 79 MPH Slider - Outside
  • 0-2 - Ball on a 80 MPH Slider - Outside
  • 1-2 - Strike Out on a 79 MPH Slider - Outside

Omar Infante ended the game

  • 0-0 - Ball on a 77 MPH Slider - Inside
  • 1-0 - Ball on a 88 MPH Sinker - Outside
  • 2-0 - Strike Looking on a 87 MPH Four Seamer - Over the Plate
  • 2-1 - Strike Looking on a 78 MPH Slider - Over the Plate
  • 2-2 - Pop Up Out on a 79 MPH Slider - Over the Plate

Romo in Game 3

Jhonny Peralta led off the 9th for the Tigers

  • 0-0 - Ball on a 80 MPH Slider - Outside
  • 1-0 - Strike Swinging on a 80 MPH Slider - Outside
  • 1-1 - Strike Looking on a 80 MPH Slider - Outside
  • 1-2 - Ball on a 81 MPH Slider - Outside
  • 2-2 - Foul on a 79 MPH Slider - Outside
  • 2-2 - Foul on a 78 MPH Slider - Low
  • 2-2 - Fly Ball Out on a 89 MPH Four Seamer - Over the Plate

Alex Avila was up next

  • 0-0 - Ball on a 88 MPH Sinker - Low
  • 1-0 - Strike Looking on a 89 MPH Four Seamer - Over the Plate
  • 1-1 - Ball on a 87 MPH Sinker - Low
  • 2-1 - Fly Ball Out on a 88 MPH Sinker - Over the Plate

Omar Infante was the final batter

  • 0-0 - Strike Looking on a 88 MPH Four Seamer - Over the Plate
  • 0-1 - Strike Swinging on a 80 MPH Slider - Outside
  • 0-2 - Ball on a 80 MPH Slider - Outside
  • 1-2 - Foul on a 79 MPH Slider - Over the Plate
  • 1-2 - Foul on a 79 MPH Slider - Outside
  • 1-2 - Strike Out on a 77 MPH Slider - Outside

Romo finished off the Tigers in Game 4

Austin Jackson didn't have a prayer

  • 0-0 - Strike Looking on a 79 MPH Slider - Outside
  • 0-1 - Ball on a 78 MPH Slider - Outside
  • 1-1 - Foul on a 79 MPH Slider - Over the Plate
  • 1-2 - Strike Out swinging on a 79 MPH Slider - Outside

Either did Don Kelly

  • 0-0 - Strike Swinging on a 88 MPH Four Seamer - Low
  • 0-1 - Ball on a 87 MPH Four Seamer - Low
  • 1-1 - Ball on a 87 MPH Sinker - Low
  • 2-1 - Strike Swinging on a 87 MPH Sinker - Over the Plate
  • 2-2 - Strike Out on a 86 MPH Sinker - Outside

Miguel Cabrera was stunned

  • 0-0 - Strike Looking on a 78 MPH Slider - Over the Plate
  • 0-1 - Ball on a 80 MPH Slider - Outside
  • 1-1 - Strike Swinging on a 80 MPH Slider - Outside
  • 1-2 - Ball on a 79 MPH Slider - Outside
  • 2-2 - Foul on a 79 MPH Slider - Outside
  • 2-2 - Strike Out looking on a 89 MPH Four Seamer - Over the Plate

After five sliders, there was absolutely no reason that Miguel Cabrera could ever expected the four-seamer and he watched that pitch, absolutely stunned as he knew a strike had been thrown.

Romo had thrown 27 sliders, nine fastballs and seven sinkers in this Series. He got three strikeouts on the slider but the slider was the set-up pitch that crippled Cabrera on that fastball.

The last time a World Series ended with a whiff was in 2010 when Texas' Nelson Cruz went swinging at pitch from Brian Wilson of the Giants. Cruz is one of at least 15 batters who went swinging at strike three to end a World Series (Honus Wagner may have. We do know that he whiffed to end the inaugural 1903 World Series we just don't know if he swung or watched).

Cabrera does join Goose Goslin as the only other player we know for sure who watched a pitch go by to end a Series. Goslin was a 1925 Washington Senator who took a pitch from the Pirates' Red Oldham. 

Here are the Series ending whiffers prior to Cabrera 

Cr# Date Gm# Batter Tm Opp Pitcher Score Inn RoB
1 1903-10-13 8 Honus Wagner PIT @BOS Bill Dinneen down 3-0 t9 ---
2 1925-10-15 7 Goose Goslin WSH @PIT Red Oldham down 9-7 t9 ---
3 1933-10-07 5 Joe Kuhel WSH NYG Dolf Luque down 4-3 b10 12-
4 1944-10-09 6 Mike Chartak SLB @STL Ted Wilks down 3-1 t9 ---
5 1949-10-09 5 Gil Hodges BRO NYY Joe Page down 10-6 b9 12-
6 1950-10-07 4 Stan Lopata PHI @NYY Allie Reynolds down 5-2 t9 12-
7 1956-10-10 7 Jackie Robinson BRO NYY Johnny Kucks down 9-0 b9 1--
8 1965-10-14 7 Bob Allison MIN LAD Sandy Koufax down 2-0 b9 1--
9 1967-10-12 7 George Scott BOS STL Bob Gibson down 7-2 b9 ---
10 1980-10-21 6 Willie Wilson KCR @PHI Tug McGraw down 4-1 t9 123
11 1982-10-20 7 Gorman Thomas MIL @STL Bruce Sutter down 6-3 t9 ---
12 1986-10-27 7 Marty Barrett BOS @NYM Jesse Orosco down 8-5 t9 ---
13 1988-10-20 5 Tony Phillips OAK LAD Orel Hershiser down 5-2 b9 --3
14 2006-10-27 5 Brandon Inge DET @STL Adam Wainwright down 4-2 t9 1-3
15 2007-10-28 4 Seth Smith COL BOS Jonathan Papelbon down 4-3 b9 ---
16 2008-10-27 5 Eric Hinske TBR @PHI Brad Lidge down 4-3 t9 -2-
17 2010-11-01 5 Nelson Cruz TEX SFG Brian Wilson down 3-1 b9 ---
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 10/30/2012.
Sunday
Oct282012

Prince Fielder's Tough World Series

When Alex Rodriguez struggled during his Yankee postseason, the baseball world responded with an A-Rod doomsday scenario. But what we can see as Buster Posey, Miguel Cabrera, and Prince Fielder have struggled to varying degrees, one of things we all correctly acknowledge is that pitchers clearly bear down on a team's top hitters.

In the first three games of this World Series, looking at the 3-4 batters for each of these teams, Pablo Sandoval has been the outlier. Sandoval is 7-for-11 (.636) with three homers and four RBI. He has more hits, homers and RBI than the other three batters combined: Posey is 3-for-11 with one RBI, Cabrera is 2-for-9 with one RBI, and Fielder is 1-for-10 with no RBI.

One set of Giants who I don't believe has gotten enough credit are the Giants' advance scouting group. Not only have they done an outstanding job in helping their pitchers point out weaknesses of the Tigers batters, but they must be commended in guiding the San Francisco defense in positioning them for the hard hit balls that the Tigers batters have hit.

Let's look at how the Giants have pitched to Fielder.

The first thing you can see is that the Giants have worked Fielder from the middle of the plate outward.

Of the 30 pitches Fielder has seen, only six have been on the inner-half of the plate. Fielder has swung at three of those pitches and missed on two of them. During the regular season, on pitches on the inner-half of the plate, Fielder his .276 with 12 homers and had an OPS .908

This is not to say, that Fielder wasn't dangerous on pitches on the outer-half of the plate during the regular season when he hit .330 with 18 homers and an OPS of .952.

He's hit .111 on those outer-half pitches in the World Series going 1-9 with a single and two whiffs. 

So what's the difference?

Fielder has clearly been anxious (understandably) this Series and he's chasing, and to their credit the Giants pitchers are feeding into it.

Fielder has seen 20 pitches out of the strike zone. He has swung at nine of them and he is 0-7 chasing those pitches, striking out twice. In the Series, Fielder has seen only one pitch in the black and none in the corner.

This continues Fielder's regular season tendency of swinging at pitches low and away out of the zone

Just to make Fielder's batting life more of a living hell, of the 30 pitches Fielder has seen: 

  • 14 have been fastballs
  • 5 sliders
  • 4 Cutters
  • 4 Change-ups
  • 3 Curves

So, my bottom line is: be impressed with the Giants scouts, but be even more impressed with the Giants pitchers for executing a very effective game plan.

Friday
Oct262012

Nine to Know: The Giants win 2-0, Up 2-0

1. Just a thought for Tigers fans - The Giants won Game 2 of the World Series and held the Tigers to two hits and won 2-0. On October 5, 1962, in Game 2 of the World Series, the Giants held the Yankees in San Francisco to three hits and won 2-0.

  • The winning pitcher for the Giants was Jack Sanford and the losing pitcher for the Yankees in Game 2 1962 was Ralph Terry.
  • In Game 7, 1962, in San Francisco, the Yankees won, 1-0, and the winning pitcher was Terry, the loser was Sanford.

2. Last night was the 50th postseason game in which the losing team was held to two hits or less and the 24th in World Series play.

3. Madison Bumgarner was brilliant last night mixing his pitches and changing location while striking out eight.

  1. In the 1st, Bumgarner struck out Austin Jackson looking at an 86 MPH slider.
  2. In the 1st, Bumgarner struck out Omar Infante swinging at an 88 MPH slider.
  3. In the 2nd, Bumgarner struck out Avisail Garcia swinging at an 88 MPH slider.
  4. In the 3rd, Bumgarner struck out Doug Fister swinging at an 87 MPH slider.
  5. In the 3rd, Bumgarner struck out Austin Jackson swinging at an 91 MPH four seamer.
  6. In the 5th, Bumgarner struck out Delmon Young swinging at an 75 MPH curveball.
  7. In the 6th, Bumgarner struck out Gerald Laird swinging at an 89 MPH four seamer.
  8. In the 6th, Bumgarner struck out Omar Infante swinging at an 89 MPH four seamer.

4. Of the 52 teams to take a 2-0 lead in the World Series, 41 have gone on to win the title including 14 of the last 15.

5. The critical moment in this game came in the 2nd inning when Prince Fielder was thrown out at the plate with no one out. Had Tigers third base coach Gene Lamont made the correct call and held Fielder at third, Jhonny Peralta would have been the batter with runners on second and third and no out.

Peralta with runners on second and third and no out this season

  • During the regular season, with a runner on third and less than two outs, Peralta was successful in getting the runner home 11 times (39%).
  • During the season with runners on second and third and no out, Peralta was 7-for-24 (and two walks) with two doubles, one homer, four strikeouts, and seven RBI.

6. Now they know how the Yankees felt - In the ALCS, the Tigers pitchers had a 1.38 ERA and a 0.872 WHIP. In Games 1 and 2 of the World Series, the Giants pitchers had a 1.50 ERA and a 0.778 WHIP.

7. The Tigers always held lead sweeping the Yankees and have never held the lead in losing Games 1 and 2 of the World Series.

8. Striking out much?

  • The Giants have struck out 16 times in the first two games of the Series with Hunter PenceGregor Blanco and Brandon Belt whiffing three times each. In 14 postseason games, the Giants have whiffed 106 times (7.57 strikeouts per game) with Brandon Belt whiffing 15 times and Hunter Pence whiffing 14 times.

  • The Tigers have struck out 17 times in the first two games of the Series with Austin Jackson striking out four times and Omar Infante whiffing three times. In 11 postseason games, the Tigers have whiffed 86 times (7.81 strikeouts per game) with Austin Jackson whiffing 14 times and Omar Infante whiffing 12 times.

9. Time to shut up out

Postseason shutouts by the Giants

DateSeriesGm#Tm ▴OppRsltIPHBBSO
1905-10-09 WS 1 NYG PHA W  3-0 9.0 4 0 6
1905-10-12 WS 3 NYG PHA W  9-0 9.0 4 1 8
1905-10-13 WS 4 NYG PHA W  1-0 9.0 5 3 4
1905-10-14 WS 5 NYG PHA W  2-0 9.0 5 0 4
1913-10-08 WS 2 NYG PHA W  3-0 10.0 8 1 5
1917-10-10 WS 3 NYG CHW W  2-0 9.0 5 0 5
1917-10-11 WS 4 NYG CHW W  5-0 9.0 7 1 7
1921-10-13 WS 8 NYG NYY W  1-0 9.0 4 5 3
1922-10-06 WS 3 NYG NYY W  3-0 9.0 4 1 2
1923-10-12 WS 3 NYG NYY W  1-0 9.0 6 3 4
1962-10-05 WS 2 SFG NYY W  2-0 9.0 3 3 6
1987-10-07 NLCS 2 SFG STL W  5-0 9.0 2 4 6
2003-09-30 NLDS 1 SFG FLA W  2-0 9.0 3 0 5
2010-10-07 NLDS 1 SFG ATL W  1-0 9.0 2 1 14
2010-10-19 NLCS 3 SFG PHI W  3-0 9.0 3 3 7
2010-10-28 WS 2 SFG TEX W  9-0 9.0 4 3 2
2010-10-31 WS 4 SFG TEX W  4-0 9.0 3 2 8
2012-10-19 NLCS 5 SFG STL W  5-0 9.0 7 1 8
2012-10-22 NLCS 7 SFG STL W  9-0 9.0 7 4 8
2012-10-25 WS 2 SFG DET W  2-0 9.0 2 2 9
Provided by Baseball-Reference.comView Play Index Tool Used
Generated 10/26/2012.

Detroit's postseason games in which they have been shut out:

DateSeriesGm#TmOpp RsltIPHBBSO
1907-10-12 WS 5 CHC DET W 2-0 9.0 7 1 4
1908-10-13 WS 4 CHC DET W 3-0 9.0 4 0 4
1908-10-14 WS 5 CHC DET W 2-0 9.0 3 4 10
1909-10-16 WS 7 PIT DET W 8-0 9.0 6 1 1
1934-10-09 WS 7 STL DET W 11-0 9.0 6 0 5
1935-10-02 WS 1 CHC DET W 3-0 9.0 4 4 1
1940-10-07 WS 6 CIN DET W 4-0 9.0 5 2 2
1945-10-03 WS 1 CHC DET W 9-0 9.0 6 5 4
1945-10-05 WS 3 CHC DET W 3-0 9.0 1 1 1
1968-10-02 WS 1 STL DET W 4-0 9.0 5 1 17
1972-10-08 ALCS 2 OAK DET W 5-0 9.0 3 0 2
2006-10-24 WS 3 STL DET W 5-0 9.0 3 0 6
2012-10-09 ALDS 3 OAK DET W 2-0 9.0 4 2 11
2012-10-25 WS 2 SFG DET W 2-0 9.0 2 2 9
Provided by Baseball-Reference.comView Play Index Tool Used
Generated 10/26/2012.
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