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Sunday, June 30, 2013

The Tigers in June

They continue to be a good, not great team.  There are some serious problems here, as we'll see.  Here's a look at scoring.


June was the lowest month for Tigers scoring and the highest month for opponents scoring. It's all incremental, but leaning the wrong way.   Season average to date has been dropping pretty steadily for the past 30 games, from 5.41 in game 49 to the current 4.95, with 80 games played.

The other day Jim Leland said  the offense needs to get going.  Excellent point.  The Tigers played one more game in May than in June, but scored 25 more runs.  That's huge.  Meanwhile, the opponents scored only one more run in May than in June.

Tigers starting pitching deteriorated badly from April to May with run totals higher for every one of the first 7 innings.  This only translated into an extra 0.15 runs per game, though, since relief pitching was marginally less awful in May.  In May the first three innings were bad, in June it was innings 4 and 5.  But relief pitching has been a problem from the beginning, and has gotten worse again.  In June, the Tigers gave up 16 ninth inning runs - more than in April and May combined.  This season, the Tigers have lost 10 games in which they were leading in the 7th inning or later.   Relief pitching is a big part of the reason why.  The lack of a closer is looming large. The other part is the inability to score late.  The only worse team in that regard is the Seattle Mariners who can't score at any time.

 Graphs 1 and 2 show scoring by inning in June for the Tigers and opponents, respectively.

 Graph 1 - Tigers Runs Scored per Inning in June

Compare April and May.

Graph 2 - Tigers Runs Allowed per Inning in June

Compare April and May.

Graph 3 shows Tigers scoring per game in June.

Graph 3 - Tigers Runs Scored per Game in June

Blue line is runs per game, green line is the down-sloping season average to date, yellow line is average over the last 5 games.  

The Tigers are 6 games over .500, but only 1 over .500 since the beginning of May.  Closing out April with 5 straight wins is the only thing separating this year from last, when the Tigers struggled for months to get to .500.

They need for Rondon to mature fast into a real big league closer.  But that's only half the story.  They still need to get beyond being a 6 inning offense.  Here are some random stats.

April Summary.

May Summary.

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