Found July 14, 2013 on
After a Cy Young and MVP season in 2011 and falling four votes shy of another Cy Young in 2012, the first half of 2013 had been anything but kind to Justin Verlander; but on Sunday, the Detroit Tigersâ ace finished the first half in style.
Justin Verlander (AP Photo/Duane Burleson)
The 30-year-old right hander flirted with a no-hitter in a 5-0 victory against the Texas Rangers. He took a no-no with two outs into the 7th inning when Rangers first baseman Mitch Moreland doubled into the outfield. It was the first time a Ranger had reached past first base.SundayÂ was hardly the most dominant performance people had ever seen from Verlander. Depsite allowing just one hit, he also served up 3 walks against 3 strikeouts and reaching 100 pitches into the 7th. His strikeout to walk ratio wasnât the most impressive, but he got the job done. He would exit after the 7th on a tight right quad.
His performance had many wondering if we were going to see his 3rd career no-no. He had previously tossed one against the Milwaukee Brewers in 2007 and against the Toronto Blue Jays in 2011. It had all the makings of a no-hitter, such as an excellent defensive play that Matt Tuiasosopo made in left field by recovering and catching a Nelson fly ball off the wrong foot in the top of the 4th.
If he wouldâve gotten the no-no, it wouldâve been the second straight day a no-hitter was thrown, as Tim Lincecum of the San Francisco Giants tossed a 9-0, 13 strikeout performance against the San Diego Padres Saturday night. Lincecum threw 148 pitches, which was one shy of tying the record for most pitches thrown in a no-hitter. Edwin Jackson pitched a no-no for the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2010 on 149 pitches against the Tampa Bay Rays.
For the record, despite Verlander being the story of the day, Martin Perez of the Rangers was just as good for a while as well. It wasnât until the bottom of the 6th in which the game got out of hand. For the first five innings, only 3 hits came, all from the Tigers and all were solo home runs off the 22-year-old Venezueland lefty.
Torii Hunter destroyed a ball that got over the left field wall in the bottom of the 1st. Then in the bottom of the 4th, Victor Martinez and Jhonny Peralta hit back-to-back jacks that carried over left field and right field, respectively. Both men had hit their 8th shot of the season and in the case of Martinez, it was his first big fly against a left handed pitcher this season.
Hunter also scored a run in the bottom of the 6th from second in which Peralta singled him home and then Tuiasosopo added with a single that led to Miguel Cabrera crossing home plate.
The Tigersâ bullpen did an excellent job in the 8th and 9th inning to shut the door. Drew Smyly looked really good in the top of the 8th and he and Joaquin Benoit combined to finish out the 9th. Benoit ended the game by sending Moreland down on strikes.
The announcers on TBS discussed what it would take for the Tigers to get back to the World Series and they mentioned the need for bullpen help, but one wouldnât think that on Sunday based on the performances of Smyly and Benoit. Remember last year that Phil Coke replaced Jose Valverde in the ALCS against the New York Yankees and had an argument to be named MVP of the series. The 35-year-old Benoit currently had 8 saves, a 259 ERA+ and 1.062 WHIP going into Sundayâs game. So, who knows if General Manager Dave Dombrowski even needs to make a move, or if Detroit wants to see what Benoit can do in the closerâs role?
As a result of this contest, Verlander improved to 10 wins against 6 losses, while 3 game winner Perez suffered his 2nd defeat of the season. After Max Scherzer suffered his first loss of the season the night before in a 7-1 defeat, Detroit rebounded to take two of three from Texas and now sit at 52-42 and first place in the AL Central going into the All Star break, while the Rangers are 54-41 and just slightly trail the Oakland Athletics in the AL West.
BEST OF MAXIM
Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander, who had a no-hitter through 6 2/3 innings, left today's game against the Rangers with what is considered to be a tight quad muscle, the Tigers announced.
Justin Verlander left today's game with a tight right quad muscle. #Tigers
â Detroit Tigers (@tigers) July 14, 2013
We don't know if it is aÂ strained quad muscle or some...
DETROIT -- Everyone still worried or even panicking about Justin Verlander can stand down for now.
Verlander nearly no-hit a Texas Rangers team in the top 5 in the American League in batting without having his best stuff Sunday.
Verlander improved to 10-6 with a 3.50 ERA as the Tigers (52-42) defeated the Rangers (54-41), 5-0.
Just for comparison's sake, Verlander was 9-5...
The Detroit Tigers have brought back an old familiar face, having signed right-handed starter Jeremy Bonderman to a minor league contract and have decided to let him get his feet wet at the Triple-A Toledo minor league level.
Bonderman was recently released by the Seattle Mariners after having posted a 4.93 earned run average over seven starts. He is not guaranteed anything other...
DETROIT Miguel Cabrera, an accomplished amateur baseball player in Venezuela, taught his son how to play and love the game.
He stood in the dugout prior to Saturday nights game, watching Jose Miguel Cabrera, who goes by his middle name, take batting practice before the Detroit Tigers played the Texas Rangers. The proud father talked about the magnificent season his son is having...
DETROIT Pitching to Miguel Cabrera is a heart-pounding experience. The Detroit Tigers slugger is leading the majors in most hitting categories, as well as mound meetings.
Managers and pitching coaches trudge out to calm down pitchers, provide some sort of plan or a decision to walk him which has happened an American League-leading 60 times.
But most hesitantly pitch to him....
Phil Mushnick points out, "Joseph Ortiz, a reliever just up from the minors, struck out Miguel Cabrera, the defending MVP, who swung at a ball that came in belly-button-high and nearly landed in the...
Full story at Bob's Blitz ~ http://www.bobsblitz.com
Each week, good or bad, weâll look back at the biggest theme of the week that was for the Detroit Tigers.
With one half of baseballâs year already in the books, the Detroit Tigers in first place and several exciting moments happening along the way, weâre taking a breather and counting down the top five games from the first part of the season.
Thereâs certainly been low lights...
DETROIT -- Prince Fielder will have a lot of fans cheering him on in the 2013 Home Run Derby (tonight at 8 on ESPN).
Five of his teammates will be joining him at the New York Mets' Citi Field -- Miguel Cabrera, Torii Hunter, Max Scherzer, Justin Verlander and Jhonny Peralta.
But Fielder's two biggest fans are his sons, Jadyn, 8, and Haven, 7, and they're the main reasons...
51-42, 1st place, 1.5 games ahead of Cleveland.
OK, that didnât go so well. I look at it as Scherzer losing 4-1, let down considerably by his teammates. (Is Alburquerque even worth mentioning? No.) The bright spots would seem to be Phil Coke (the inevitable response to being singled out for criticism in a game post â guess we need to keep it up, guys) and an RBI from Hernan Perez...
DETROIT (AP) -- The Detroit Tigers have agreed to a minor league deal with right-hander Jeremy Bonderman, who pitched for the team from 2003-2010.
The Tigers announced the move Sunday. The 30-year-old Bonderman is expected to join Triple-A Toledo on Thursday at Buffalo.
Bonderman went 67-77 during his stint with the Tigers. He made it back to the majors this year with Seattle,...
Jeremy Bonderman is back with the Detroit Tigersâ organization, just days after the Mariners designated him for assignment following a 13-4 loss in Cincinnati.
Jeremy Bonderman is back in the Tiger organization, signed to a Triple-A contract. Bonderman pitched this year for the Mariners.
â Danny Knobler (@DannyKnoblerCBS) July 14, 2013
Bonderman made seven starts for the Mariners...
courtesy of AP
Two-time defending champ, Prince Fielder wasnât a deciding factor in this yearâs contest but he sure did make his presence known before he bowed out of the first round of the home run derby when heÂ blasted a mammoth shot that registered 483 feet.
Take a look:
courtesy of mlb.com
The former home run champ only went yard five times. Fielder gave up his crown to...
I donât remember ever being this relieved to see the All-Star Break.Â Although I probably say that every year, this year I really mean it.Â Between the injuries and the fatigue that seems to have infected the remaining players lately, Iâm ready for my boys to have a break.Â I need one too.
The Rangers were nearly no-hit today in Detroit. Not really a surprising statement,...
Players will often tell you that individual accolades donât matter, which obviously means that half-season awards are childâs play. But hey, who cares?
Weâve arrived at the MLB All-Star break, which is as good a time as any to review how teams have gotten to where they are and which teams will remain in the thick of things come October. Itâs also a good time to look back...
Staying Power OK, so by now everyone knows what Chris Davis and Miguel Cabrera are doing. Davisâs 37 homers before the break are the second-most all time, second only to Barry BondsâsÂ 39 in 2001 (the year he broke the single-season home run record with 73 dingers in a season). However, when Bonds hit 73 HR, [...]