By: Holly Horning & Kurt Snyder
Saturday’s segment is a day to touch on as many issues as possible. With 20 games behind us, readers have the opportunity to read and think about a number of different topics.
Take a look and see what our writers have on their minds. Saturdays are no different as our writers don’t see the other’s topics prior to being published. Are they channeling the same thoughts?
Who says fans don’t know what they’re talking about? For 3 weeks now, many fans have been clamoring for Brad to move Upton out of the #2 slot where he never got on base and to put either JD or Iggy there because they are more reliable. And while it’s a very small sample size, now that Brad changed the lineup, the move has paid off and run scoring has taken off.
Unlike last year when they were usually the first team to score, this year, the Tigers played many of their games trailing. This puts extra pressure on the pitchers, changes their pitching strategy and overall puts more stress on the team. And given that Upton has been mightily struggling at the plate and not getting on base, this is most likely the reason why this situation was being created.
Until Thursday, Anthony Gose was hitting well under .200. Then it was revealed that in his entire career, Gose has never taken batting practice on the fields, only in the cages, which does not offer players the most realistic experience. One would think that if a player is significantly struggling, he would be open to any possibility that might improve his game.
Will Michael Fulmer get spot starts in the rotation or will the Tigers be brave enough to let the best pitchers pitch? Something tells me, given Pelfrey’s salary, he would have to stink up the joint for another month before they would consider their options. Teams are usually much more patient with the money players.
I have to give Brad credit (assuming it was his idea) for moving Upton out of the #2 spot in the order, and replacing him with JD. It certainly hasn’t hurt as both players have perked up. I think JD would hit anywhere in the lineup, but Upton may benefit the most by the change considering he seemed to be pressing in the #2 hole, with a new team, in a new league and heavy expectations.
With the departure of Rajai Davis, it appears to have been the beginning of the end of the Tigers’ running game. Stolen bases are now a thing of the past again for the Tigers. The element of speed the last couple seasons allowed them to score in different ways. But they have now limited their ability to play small ball and manufacture runs.