PIVOTAL GAME? I THINK WE FOUND ONE

By:  Kurt Snyder

Well, scrap everything I was going to write about. Thank goodness I am the late writer of this duo. We needed to capture the biggest win of the season thus far.

We don’t often dedicate a complete post to one game, but forgive us this one time. Tuesday’s win was the kind of game you could look back on as the day things turned around, if that is indeed the case. It had that feel about it.

With the Tigers shut down completely by Toronto’s Aaron Sanchez to the tune of 1 hit through 8 innings, the team was dead, so it seemed. With the help of Bobby Parnell, the Tigers got out of a bases loaded jam in the top of the ninth, giving the Tigers a slight chance, very slight, in the 9th.

And boy, did the Tigers play some ball in the 9th and 10th. Iglesias, often known for his cockiness, like it or not, singled to start the ninth, and he was jacked up standing at first after the hit, sensing the Tigers may just make a run at this one.

Ian Kinsler, with his double, sent Iggy all the way home, before Miggy tied it with a huge double to right center. But the little things stole the show in this one … the ones we are not used to seeing with this ball club. Bunts. Clutch, well-executed bunts, first by Romine in ninth after Kinsler’s double and then by Iggy in the 10th helping to load the bases, before Kinsler’s game winner.

The Tigers, having put up 11 runs and 15 hits the night before, were headed for a loss without a whimper on Tuesday. Typical attribute for a .500, hot and cold team.

I want to say that this was an important win, but they all are aren’t they? Well, this one was different. We have waited for this team to get on a roll. We have waited for Justin Upton to start hitting and we have waited for them to start beating good teams; all of which have begun this week.

The Tigers are starting to find a spark from a handful of players; the emergence of Cameron Maybin, the continued leadership and the relentless play of Ian Kinsler. But little things, that sometimes hide in the darkness, far away from big Tiger homers that win games, dominated this win and hopefully wins in the future.

Andrew Romine just does his job on this team and his bunt in the ninth was critical in keeping things rolling. And Iggy is as important as a player gets.  He’s playing a stellar shortstop coupled with doing the little things with the bat. His bunt in the 10th sealed the win. It was just a matter of who would drive in the winning run after that.

A little bit of small ball is emerging with the Tigers, and it’s been a long time coming. Sure, Miggy’s big double highlighted the late innings, especially after nearly getting knocked in the head with a high hard one in the ninth.

But the little things provided the opportunity in this one. They contributed to a big win that kept a nice run alive. On a night when all looked lost, the Tigers showed mettle, a desire we haven’t seen much of all season.

12 thoughts on “PIVOTAL GAME? I THINK WE FOUND ONE

  1. Agreed. Tonight had that typical go quietly aura didn’t it? Not used to a come back script from this group. And Zimmerman tomorrow. Loving it! Don’t pinch anyone yet, but we went from second to last to second in the division with only 2 games above .500. Let’s see if we can stick around that neighborhood or even jump ahead with 10 roadies.

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  2. I’m sorry but I’m not buying into this team. Every team, every year, no matter how good, mediocre or bad they are, finds a way to win a couple of these types of games. Even the ’03 Tigers won 1-2games. Let’s see if they can inch further over .500 to about 10 games. Then I’ll start buying and believing in this team

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  3. Couldn’t help but think of yesterday’s TT topic when Kinsler drove Iggy home with his double in the 9th. When Ian clanked the single over the pulled-in infield to bring Upton home with the winning run, my thoughts came back to the current MVP for 2016. Ian’s interview after the game cemented my view of him.

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  4. Sanchez was dealing. 12 strikeouts. Pitch count low. You knew he’d pitch the 9th. Resignation sets in. We’ve seen it before. And then BOOM! Small ball, BIG win. Is this a pivotal moment? It certainly could be. Let’s see what happens today. Afternoon games on getaway day so often disappoint. A win today can solidify that premise.

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  5. We have relatives from Tennessee visiting who are not baseball fans. After watching the ending of this game with us, I think they may be now! Wow, that was fun. I could easily stand another three and a half months of that type of baseball. Go Tigers!!

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  6. The Tigers have played excellent baseball for 5 straight games. Can’t hep noticing here that the players get the credit for the successes and the manager gets the blame for the failures. Perhaps it is still too soon to reach either conclusion. They are more fun to root for when they show the excitement and spirit exhibited last night.

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    • Hughie I see plenty of of good and bad out there from coaches. I also feel those that say a coach has little to no affect a losing streak need to own the same view when winning.

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  7. The only way to identify a pivotal moment is from a historical perspective so we’ll have to wait and see. Meanwhile, it is nice to see some brighter moments sprinkled in during the last week or two. I almost forgot that watching baseball could be enjoyable.

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  8. I’ve been critical of this bunch for seemingly never winning this type of game like the Royals seem to regularly. I’ll be interested to see if they come out energized today. After a big win will they come out flat?

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    • Matt Miller, after scoring so many runs, the Tiger’s were ripe for a flat game yesterday. For 8 innings, they were pretty flat. After the final two innings, though, and JZ in the mound, they should come out and play good, solid baseball. They should win this game, today. But I know what you mean and how you feel!

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  9. It all comes down to pitching. Overall SP looks is better now that Fulmer (and hopefully Boyd) are pitching every 5th game. Although Pelfrey is scary with his high WHIP, lately he somehow has managed to keep most of them from scoring. Can he keep it up? Jury is still out on the BP IMO. The offense is fairly dependable but still a few ?.

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  10. Missing was a stolen base. No complaints though. How about the decisions Ausmus made! Gutsy move to pinch run for Miggy after his 2B. He is maturing as a manager. The team is finally showing some heart. Now I greet every game with fear that they might lose. I haven’t cared in a while. After last nights win, I am now getting excited!

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