Thursday, October 10, 2013

Thoughts after 7 innings, Tigers, A's, ALDS Game 5

Haven't heard much Justin Verlander bashing lately? Wonder why? This is truly a gem. It could one of those nights for the ages. We'll see.
- If you looked at the Tigers in the middle of the season, the two players fans had turned against the most were Verlander and Victor Martinez. It goes to show you how the game does, eventually, play to track records. Premier players eventually become premier players. We're seeing an example of it in this series. On top of it, Martinez has excellent leadership qualities.
- The Tigers have left too many runners in scoring position. It's up to Verlander, by keeping the bullpen out of the game, to make it a non-factor. Oakland has a well-established tendency to rally late in games, especially at home. This is still too close for comfort to depend on the Tigers' bullpen. There is a much greater sense of comfort with Verlander on the mound. This is a night for Tigers' manager Jim Leyland to push Verlander's pitch count.
- A's third baseman Jash Donaldson has played like anything but an MVP candidate in this series, offensively or defensively. He cost the A's a run with the throw in the dirt on a double-play ball. At the plate, it's like he keeps trying to hit a 5-run home run.


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