|Manny being Manny - bumbling around in left field and finding ways to sabotage my team|
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.