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-- Brad Delong

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Tuesday, September 17, 2013

The Last 12 Games

The Tigers have 12 games left against what should be a very easy schedule: three games each against the Mariners, White Sox, Twins and Marlins.  So far against the other AL teams, their record is as follows.

Mariners (66-84): 3-1
Sox (59-91): 10-6
Twins (64-85):  9-7

The Tigers, even playing at their current .500 level, should easily be able to take 2 out of three from each of these awful teams.   But the Twins have fared better than their season record against the Tigers.  There are no sure things here.

They close out the season against the absolutely dreadful Marlins (55-95) who will have to finish way over their heads to avoid a 100 loss season.  If the Tigers can't sweep them, I will have to do some serious drinking.

They should [should!] easily win 8 of these 12 games, though continuing their season-long .580 win percentage would only give them 7 wins.  That would be enough to hold on to the Division pennant no matter what the Indians - currently 6.0 behind - do.

If they only win six while the Indians win out, the division ends in a tie.  This nightmare scenario is fortunately highly unlikely.  The Indians close out against the Royals, Astros, White Sox and Twins, and should win the majority of those games.  Winning out is not impossible, but I'd rate it as a less than 10% chance.

I always say each W you get early is one you don't have to fight for in September.  The Tigers were only 14-14 in May, when they had 7 games (6-1) against the Astros and 5 (3-2) against the Twins.  But they lost 2 to the Nationals, and 3 of 4 each to the Pirates and Rangers.

If you're going to lose to the good teams, you have to do a better job of beating up on the bad ones.

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