Weekly record: 3-2
Stars at the plate: OF Josh Anderson, 6-for-11 (.545 avg), 3 doubles, 4 RBI, 4 runs; 1B Miguel Cabrera, 10-for-23 (.400), HR, 6 R; SS Ramon Santiago, 5-for-22 (.353), HR, 11 RBI
Stars on the mound: RHP Edwin Jackson, 7.2 IP, 0 ER, 6 H, 6 K; RHP Rick Porcello, 7 IP, 1 ER, 5 H, 3 K; RHP Fernando Rodney, 1 SV, 2 IP, 7 batters faced
Gone missing: LHP Nate Robertson didn’t make an appearance and hasn’t since April 11. It’s not an injury. Just hasn’t been necessary. SS Adam Everett also didn’t play. He was sick with the flu after his off day Monday.
Weekly plot: The Tigers opened their week with a drubbing at the hands of the White Sox in ugly, wet, cold April weather, then, thankfully I should think, were rained out Tuesday. That, coupled with the off days, gave Jim Leyland an opportunity to skip Zach Miner’s next start, putting him in the bullpen. He didn’t make another appearance after his start Monday, as there was no need. The Tigers came back to shut out the White Sox on Wednesday behind Armando Galarraga and friends, before taking a day off to travel to Seattle. I think it’s fair to say the Tigers came on bad inning by Justin Verlander (with some help from his defense) from sweeping Seattle. Verlander looked like he had no-hit stuff, only to have the fifth inning get away from him fast. That was followed up by a shutout by a sick — as in a cold, not as in awesome, though he was — Edwin Jackson on Saturday, and 20-year-old Rick Porcello’s first win in an easy Sunday.
How good was the pitching this week? In their last 38 innings (dating back to the seventh inning Monday), the Tigers pitched 34 scoreless. Even Juan Rincon registered a 0.00 ERA for the week, in one appearance. The Tigers’ two shutouts this week matched their total for the entirety of 2008.
At the dish, the stories to watch were the emergence of Ramon Santiago and Josh Anderson, who both showed their skills as role players can be useful. Santiago bunted into a pair of squeeze plays. Anderson runs fast.
Upcoming opponents: The Tigers stay on the road all week. They’ll visit Orange County from Tuesday to Thursday to face the Angels — where they face two left handed pitches — and then Kansas City on Friday through Sunday for what could be an April battle for first place. Both teams join the White Sox in first place as of today.
Stats from Fangraphs.com