Originally written on Tigers Weblog  |  Last updated 7/7/12

Detroit Tigers, 42-42, 4 1/2 games behind Chicago.

Today the Tigers have a chance to win 4 in a row, which they last did when their starting second baseman was named Brandon Inge (April 15-18), and would tie their longest winning streak of the season.  Indicators are positive: the April 4-game winning streak was also against the Royals.

The Tigers will send Doug “Five-Inning” Fister out to the mound, who seems to have misplaced his fastball velocity when he returned from the DL.  The Royals counter with their lefty-du-jour, sometimes troublesome Bruce Chen (3-1, 3.00 in his last 4 vs. Detroit).

**********

The player of the game last night was Drew Smyly, who once again struggled after the 4th inning, but pulled it together, clowns be damned. And what a first 4 innings those were: Smyly struck out 9 batters, and only gave up 2 singles and no walks.  The Royals seemed to have no idea what he was throwing.  Was it a new pitch?

Or maybe he was just trying to impress Kate Upton. Yes, apparently Miss Upton has jumped on the Tiger bandwagon now that they are a .500 club.  Her appearance at Comerica last night set off a Twitter firestorm.

Personally, I have more important things to worry about.  Like these 4:00 starts.  When they do day/night game splits, they count as day games.  But don’t you think there are players who struggle in early day games, but do perfectly fine in 4:00 games? Should there be a 3rd category in the splits? Who has time for supermodel gossip when there are issues like this at hand?

Stat of the Day: The Tigers have attempted 41 stolen bases this season (33 successful), the lowest number of attempts in all of MLB.

Today’s Player of the Pre-game: Gerald Laird.  The Royals like to run, and like to get caught–22 times in 75 attempts.  Laird obliges, and also nails Prince Fielder with a pickoff throw as retribution for the black eye Fielder gave him.

Today’s Winning Record Lineup:

  1. Austin Jackson CF
  2. Quintin Berry LF
  3. Miguel Cabrera 3B
  4. Prince Fielder 1B
  5. Delmon Young DH
  6. Ryan Raburn RF
  7. Jhonny Peralta SS
  8. Ramon Santiago 2B
  9. Gerald Laird C
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