Monday, June 04, 2007

Monday Morning Manager

(my weekly take on the Tigers)

Last Week: 3-4
This Week: (6/5-7: at Tex; 6/8-10: NYM)

It's funny how the memory works. Saturday morning, after the Tigers blew a four-run lead in the ninth Friday night in Cleveland, John Lowe wrote in the Free Press that it was the first time the Tigers had blown a lead of at least four runs in the ninth inning -- on the road -- in almost 21 years.

And I knew EXACTLY which game that was, back in 1986.

After double-checking on the best website on the planet,, I found it.

August 29, 1986: Tigers at California. I remember watching that game, and that the Tigers had a huge lead, and blew it. Boy, was I right. They went into the bottom of the ninth with a 12-5 lead -- and lost, 13-12.

Yep -- eight runs in the bottom of the ninth, culminating in Dick Schofield's grand slam off Willie Hernandez. I remember catcher Mike Heath slamming his helmet in the dugout as the Angels fans went bonkers. It was a time when Hernandez was giving up homers and blowing leads, and was being booed out of town just two years after his MVP/Cy Young year.

Today's Tigers showed me a lot -- rallying to win the last two games of the Indians series, after the Friday night debacle made them 0-5 against the Tribe.

Lost in the series was the fact that the Tigers smacked around the Indians' pitching pretty good all weekend, even in the losses. 2-5 against Cleveland should have been 3-4, so I guess that's not too bad.

Sorry to see Jose Mesa get released. As I wrote here last month, I was hoping Mesa -- with his experience and savvy -- could be a great help in the bullpen, after coming off the disabled list. It never happened -- his fastball a few mph slow and his movement not all that good.

He's 41, and unfortunately throws with his right arm. Not being a lefty might mean his career is over.

This week the Tigers get Fernando Rodney back and invade Texas to take on the struggling Rangers. Already the vultures are out, picking at the carcass. First baseman Mark Teixeira can be had, they say. Now I hear that the blabbermouths on ESPN say closer Eric Gagne -- frequently injured lately -- could be Detroit-bound if the Tigers' bullpen woes continue.

And don't forget the Mets! They come to town this weekend. Now THAT should be some fun! The World Series that almost was, in 2006.



Blogger tiger337 said...

I listened to the Dick Schofield game on the radio. It was horrible, a game I'll never forget. The Friday game immediately brought it back to mind.


2:44 PM  

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