Friday, September 30, 2011

Mario gets a taste of 'Minnesota Nice', Manny dives onto the DL

Manny being Manny - bumbling around in left field and finding ways to sabotage my team
The last time Mar and I played PTP, it was in Reagan International Airport waiting for our flight back to Milwaukee.  We once again continued our road rolling ways, this time in Roseville, Minnesota over a Summit EPA and a plate of hot wings.  Irritated that both Spencer and Nick sat above me in the standings, it was time to give Mario a dose of 'Minnesota Nice'.

Game 1:  Felix Hernandez @ Andy Pettite
Newly acquired King Felix was finally ready for his first start as a Tiger, and he didn't disappoint - scattering 5 hits over the full 9 innings, and allowing only 2 runs.  Those 2 runs were not enough to earn Mar the win, as the Tiger offense was active early, using a Manny sac fly and a Adrien Beltre 2-run blast to put 3 up on the board in the top of the first.  Elvis Andrus scored new cog Ben Zobrist on a 2-out RBI single in the 2nd, a solo homer by Paully Konerko in the 6th, followed by a Paully RBI-single in the 8th, made it 6-2, and Mario had no offensive counter.
Torto wins 6-2

Game 2:  Doug Fister @ Jared Weaver
Mar felt better about this pitching matchup, as he had his #1 ace on the mound.  This feeling didn't last though, as my Tigers' bats exploded in the middle innings.  My squad got on the board in the 1st again,  this time on another Cap'n Paully RBI-single.  Konerko continued his hot hitting ways, with a 2-run HR in the 3rd.
During the bottom of the fifth, a bizzare roll (and likely a misadventurous route to the ball) had Manny diving for a sinking liner in left, that got by him for a double all score.  The roll for injury proved disastrous, costing the dreadlocked Dominican 30 games, essentially the entire season, unless I somehow find my way into games 6 or 7 in a World Series.
But back to the game, the top of the 6th rolled around, and Weaver got himself into trouble, giving up a 3-run HR to the Grandyman, then a series of doubles, walks, and singles that ended the inning with the score at 8-naught. Fister (I hardly knew her?) was absolutely lights out thru 7, and the pile-one runs kept coming with the Tigers scoring 1 in the 7th, 4 in the 8th, and another 5 in the 9th, the highlight being a Ben Zobrist GRAND SLAM.  Last man out of the bullpen, Franky Francisco, cruised thru the last two innings in Fister's stead, and the rout was mercifully over.
Torto wins 18-0 

Game 3:  Gavin Floyd @ C.C.Sebathia
Now desparate to salvage something out of this series, Mario called on his big bad #2, C.C. to stop the bleeding.  Unfortunately, my squad often enjoys battering around lefties, particularly those with poor hold/arm combos, and this game was no exception.  Mario was out to a 2-1 lead thru 6, but CC was gotten to in a bad way in the top of the 7th, touching him up for 5 with the bulk of the runs coming in on a bases loaded base-clearing double by Beltre.  To add to Mar's misery, the Rabbits were running wild, stealing 5 bases and generally drawing out the game to an annoying length.  Mario couldn't navigate thru my bullpen combo of Duensing, Crain, and Balfour in the 7th, 8th, and 9th, and again went down quietely.
Torto wins 6-2
Torto sweeps 3-0 

And since Manny can't follow the simple instructions we gave him when in the field (just let everything fall in front of you), and is injured for the duration of the regular season, the Tigers will be calling up one Edwin Encarnacion from the minors to fill out the roster.


  1. please call your minor league call-up by his birth name, please. Edwin Encarcerated.

    Who voted Grandyman for MVP? Lame. He is a product of the Yanks lineup and that little league stadium he plays in. Great player, don't get me wrong, but Verlander was THE BEST PLAYER in the AL this year. As Keither says....."the numbers don't lie!"

  2. As much as I love Baby Grand, I gotta agree with Spence on this one. Grandy's #s are inflated at least 15-20% due to hitting in front of Cano, A-Rod, and Texiera, and that 315' fence in right. An impressive year, no doubt, but the Yanks would have probably still made the playoffs with Andruw Jones hitting in the 2-hole.

    I'm hesitant to go with Verlander, not because he wasn't uber valuable, but because Miggy was probably just as valuable to the Tigers on the offense. Lose either one of those guys, and the Tigers probably only muster 80-84 wins at best.

    Therefore, my vote would seemingly go to Mr. Bautista. His numbers are basically Miggy's, but add 13 HRs and subtract 40pts off his BA. Take Joey Bats off the Jays, and they are the Orioles.

    Errr... wait a minute. I'd value 40pts of BA in meaningful games throughout the last 2 months of the season over those 10+ HRs in garbage time in the bottom half of the AL East. Therefore, I've come full circle here, and given my vote to the AL batting champ, Miguel Cabrera. His clutchness, coupled with being the premiere offensive player on a team that played meaningful games all year, and good power numbers in a park where HRs go to die, makes him my MVP.


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