In spring training just about everybody thought it was just a matter of starting the season and ordering playoff tickets. Something happened between Lakeland and Detroit…reality. Maybe these Tigers aren’t as good as we thought. Let’s look at Prince Fielder. He’s a legitimate power threat at anytime and is an intelligent hitter. He is however changing leagues and that isn’t always an easy transition. There is a difference and it takes some players longer than others to adjust. He’s done pretty well but we have yet to see an outbreak of home runs, hopefully we will.
Saturday’s game against the Oakland A’s showed just how valuable Doug Fister has become. He looked lost in the first two innings, but after making a slight strategy change, he started mowing them down. He never got flustered or stubbornly clung to his original game plan and his adjustment proved to be all the difference. Speaking of starting pitching….with the exception of Rick Porcello’s last start…the Tiger starters have been outstanding. Now it’s. the bullpen that’s sprung a leak. Veterans you depend on like Phil Coke and Octavio Dotel have taken turns in disappointing performances. I’m hoping the alarm goes off and I find out this has been nothing but a bad dream.
So what’s wrong with Miguel Cabrera?? He’s swinging at bad pitches and not producing with men in scoring position. If Fielder and Cabrera aren’t producing, then the Tigers aren’t winning. You are going to run into good pitching at times…but everyone who throws his glove on the field is looking like Cy Young against the Bengals. This is the weakest division in baseball…so the Tigers can afford to tread water but now I’m thinking maybe something is wrong with the chemistry. Manager Jim Leyland scoffs at the idea but adding Fielder and changing Cabrera to third base maybe is having a bigger effect than we first thought.