Sunday, October 04, 2009

On Miggy, Stafford, Porcello At Metrodome And The Wolverines

- Matthew Stafford is the least of the Lions' problems right now in terms of performance. His injured knee might be another factor.
The Lions need Stafford on the field, not only because he gives them the best chance to win now, but because each game he plays is like putting his education into the bank.
The less he plays, the longer it will be for his eventual development into a top flight QB. And it's clear already that Stafford does have a good chance of being the franchise quarterback the Lions have been lacking the last five decades.

- In two road starts against the Twins this season, Rick Porcello is 0-2 with a 6.30 ERA. He did pitch seven innings of shutout, 4-hit ball against the Twins early in the year at Comerica Park.
Not that the Twins' starter Tuesday has had much success against the Tigers at the Metrodome in 2009. Against the Tigers at home this season, Scott Baker is 0-1 with a 7.60 ERA.

- The Twins bullpen, other than Joe Nathan is awful. If the Tigers fall behind Tuesday, it doesn't necessarily mean they are done. They will be, however, if Nathan comes out of the bullpen in the ninth inning with a lead.

- Miguel Cabrera is one of the most-gifted hitters I have ever seen. However, there is something obviously lacking, which has prevented him from becoming one of baseball's genuine stars. I think people are starting understand that, and why, more lately. His OPS will always be good. He will always hit for average. Those aren't his issues. It doesn't mean it will be like that forever. Cabrera is young. Time is still on his side. Thing is, time isn't exactly on the Tigers' side right now...

- The Lions can't allow a kickoff return for a touchdown, and a long run from scrimmage for a touchdown, in the same game - and expect to win anywhere. But particularly on the road.

- Michigan State's fork in the road this season was the Michigan game. For the Wolverines, it is at Iowa Saturday. A victory, and the Wolverines will be just fine. A loss, however, would put Michigan in a nose-dive that will be difficult to recover from - especially with Penn State looming Oct. 24.



Anonymous Michael C said...

Wow, Stafford impressed me so much today (when flipping back and forth between the Tigers game). In just his 4th game he looks REALLY good.

Going from historically bad Joey Harrington to below average starter Jon Kitna, the difference was night and day for the Lions offense. However Stafford is already looking better than Kitna ever did for us. Do you remember that stretch during our peak, the 7-9 year, where we went the majority of the season without completing a 3rd and 10 or longer? Stafford is a threat to complete these every time!

Every time the Lions get the ball, no matter the field position, they have a legitimate chance to drive down the field and get a TD. This has been unheard of in Detroit for a long long time. And the kid is only going to get better.

I was iffy about the pick, but I'm finally 100% on board the Stafford bandwagon now. He's really looking like he has a good chance to develop into a top 5 QB in the NFL. I didn't know the Lions were allowed to have one of those.

8:12 PM 
Blogger Core Contrarian said...

Some things really don't change as we are in another Jim Leyland Tiger team second-half fade; though this time it is more of a collapse than a fade. I am sure that Mike Illitch is just SO pleased with Mr. Leyland right now. (Of course, the players are at fault but the guy has an unflattering history here)

8:03 AM 
Blogger Fred Brill said...


Do you know how they came to the decision that the play off game be at the Dome from Hell?

I don't get it.

As for who wins this one game - it's a coin flip. I'd be lying if I said I liked the Tiger's chances.

8:21 AM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Michael C,
Now we'll see how the knee thing works out. But it's obvious there is a chance Stafford could be a terrific player.

11:45 AM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Core Contrarian,
There is no doubting what you state is true. What I have been able to understand is why.

11:46 AM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Fred Brill,
They stopped the coin flips after last year. It is because the Twins had the better head-to-head record vs. the Tigers.

11:46 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe Leyland has to have some heat right now.

You would think that with all his experience, he would have acted a bit differently during the run...

He tried the "have fun" philosophy but one might think it should have been "you guys had better bear down and start the kick a.. or you're going to lose this!!"

"Now get out there and kick it in or you're going to have your backs to the wall!! GD it!!"

And, by the way, it would help to optimize the team's chances down the stretch run.

12:56 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"There is no doubting what you state is true. What I have been able to understand is why."

If you understand it, tell us.... why?

1:55 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Leyland is taking heat right now for everything.

2:15 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

The police report on the incident involving Miguel Cabrera couldn't be more telling about why he doesn't get the maximum out of his ability as a player.

2:17 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I’m not sure how I feel about the Cabrera situation. It’s almost fact that on-field production has the ability to erase many “sins” of personal life off the field. Cabrera could be a grand-slam away from redemption, but then again…is he? As we all well know Detroit’s outlook is bleak. In the eyes of Tiger fans this goes past a domestic disturbance incident; it goes past lying about his dog attacking him; and it goes past hanging out with the opposing team. He cheated on the Tiger’s and cheated on the city of Detroit.

In the short term if he can pull it together and show up to the Metro dome not drunk and ready to play, he could do something miraculous and get the monkey off the back. If he doesn’t he is a perfect target for blame for what has transpired over the last week or two of the season.

For Cabrera’s sake, for the Tiger’s sake, and for Detroit’s sake I hope everything works out.


3:54 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What for heavens sake is Cabrerra out galivanting around the night before one of the most important games of the year?

Wonder why he might be 0-11?

10:47 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

His on-field production is excellent, but could be so much better. Now it's understood why.

11:43 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

To have a .26 blood alcohol level at 7 am and then report for work that afternoon says a lot.

11:44 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So Cabrera now gets maybe 5 hours of sleep (with no REMS) ... doesn't sober up until about 3:00-4:00 PM the day of the game ..

I once saw Micky Mantle strike out four times in a row vs. the Cleveland Indians ...

Probably tough night before the game.

But it wasn't for a pennant-winning game.

10:26 AM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

The Tigers shouldn't have allowed him to play.

11:44 AM 
Anonymous ryan said...

How would losing AT Iowa in a night game "put UM in a nose dive"? Sorry, but that is just plain stupid statement. Sounds like wishful thinking from a sparty.

The crucial game is at home vs PSU and at Illinois. If UM wins both, 8-4 is going to happen.

BTW, Pat you should stop lying to people and just admit that you are a Sparty Slappie. That you continue to deny your bias is embarrassing. It is obvious to everyone with ears that you love MSU and hate UM.

1:52 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

The Sparty stuff is a bit stale. Michigan has a chance to do a lot better than 8-4 if they beat Iowa. That is why it is such a key game.

2:07 PM 

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