Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Blogging and the Tigers

Blogging has been a little light what with the holidays and my oldest son's 40th birthday.(man does that make me feel old!) Blogging may become lighter yet because my house needs work and Iv got to do most of it this summer. But I'll try to post every three days or so.

In the meantime, I decided to watch the Tigers play host the the New York Yankees for the last 3 days at Comerica park. I wanted to see how the Tigers would stack up against a proven quality ballclub and I found out: They don't. There is no way the Detroit Tigers can compete with the big boys and I predict they will be at or below 500 by the end of the season. There are several reasons why I believe this.

Watching the two teams hit I noticed that the bat speed of the Tiger hitters seemed to be a lot faster than the NY hitters. Yankee bat speed seemed to be less than max. Of course a slower bat speed leaves the bat in the strike zone just a tad longer increasing the chances of making contact.

Mike Mussina is not a power pitcher. He throws a lot of off speed stuff and if hitters can't hit the off speed pitches they will go nowhere as a team. He was literally lobing the ball over the plate and the Tiger hitters were trying to kill it. The Tigers had the same problem with Randy Johnson on Monday.

Some Tiger hitters have little or no self discipline. Chris Shelton has a habit of swinging at a pitch up around the eyes. Of course you can't hit that kind of pitch. The natural tendency is to swing under it. I only saw one NY hitter swing at such a pitch.

I think the Tigers' impressive win total was the result of a scheduling quirk. For the first 40 or so games The Tigers played mostly cream puff teams who were struggling and couldn't hit or pitch. We got a glimpse of what is to come when the Tigers played the White Sox and lost all three games. I wanted to see if those losses were just a fluke or the norm for the Tigers against good teams. They are the norm. The Tigers will finish with a better record than last year for sure but they are not contenders. Not yet. They need more talent.
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