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Sunday, April 17, 2016

Tigers First 10 Games

I came into this season with a lot of optimism.  Verlander, Victor, Miggy, and Sanchez are all healthy for the first time in three years.  Green had his hand problem repaired.  There is a credible relief staff for the first time in many years.  Last year the Tigers were close to first in batting average, but only 10th in runs scored.  This seems like an anomaly that couldn't be repeated.  J.D. is the real deal.  I'm looking for Castellanos to have a break out year.   Justin Upton is an upgrade in left field, and should add some punch.  Free Press sports writer Drew Sharp declared this a 3rd place team, but I think he is dumb.

After 10 games the Tigers are 7-3, a very good start. This would project to 113 wins over 162 games. I don't expect that to happen.  But there are a lot of good things going on.  Batting has been potent, and the runs have come with it.   Tigers and Orioles are leading the league in team batting average, tied at .291. In 11 games, the Orioles have scored 60 runs, to the Tigers 54 in 10.  Tigers are way behind in home runs though, 23 to 14.   So, naturally, the Orioles have the highest slugging percentage, a gonzo .540.  The Tigers are next at .461.  So the offense is working.  Despite getting shut out the other night, the Tigers are averaging 5.4 runs per game.  Baltimore is at 5.54.  Boston is 3rd at 5.3.

Here are the individual batting stats.

J.D. Martinez 39 0.385 0.444 0.538 0.983
Nick Castellanos 38 0.368 0.359 0.605 0.964
Ian Kinsler 45 0.333 0.354 0.556 0.91
Jose Iglesias 30 0.333 0.444 0.367 0.811
Miguel Cabrera 38 0.289 0.4 0.421 0.821
Justin Upton 46 0.261 0.277 0.391 0.668
Anthony Gose 29 0.241 0.313 0.345 0.657
Saltalamacchia 22 0.227 0.292 0.727 1.019

J.D. Martinez 6 15 3 0 1 5 0 0 5 8
Nick Castellanos 7 14 3 0 2 8 0 0 0 11
Ian Kinsler 10 15 1 0 3 8 1 1 2 7
Jose Iglesias 5 10 1 0 0 1 1 0 6 2
Miguel Cabrera 7 11 2 0 1 4 0 0 7 8
Justin Upton 6 12 3 0 1 2 0 0 1 18
Anthony Gose 4 7 0 0 1 2 0 1 3 10
Saltalamacchia 3 5 2 0 3 10 0 0 2 9

Neither Cabrera nor Upton has contributed much as yet.  When they get going, this offense should be terrorizing opposing pitchers.

Here is scoring by inning.

There is some success the first time through the line up.  Lack of 3rd inning scoring is mysterious. Big inning has been the 6th.  This is the 3rd time through the line up, so the batters are figuring out the starters.  Late scoring is encouraging, since the Tigers are getting to the relievers.

I think it's too early to say a lot about pitching.   Team ERA is 3.76.  Not horrible, but only 8th in the A. L.   Opponents batting average is .270, and that is awful.  J.V. is yet to find the stride he had at the end of last season.  His WHIP is 1.59, and ERA is a dismal 7.16.   Sanchez has been good, with a 1.31 WHIP and 3.38 ERA and 2 wins.  Shane Green is looking good with 0.857 WHIP and 2.57 ERA.  The real star has been Jordan Zimmerman, with 2 wins, 13 shutout innings pitched, a 1.00 WHIP and 0.00 ERA.

Here is opponents scoring, on the same scale as the Tigers'.

Starters are having early problems.  Relievers have been decent.

On the defensive side, Tigers lead the A. L. with 1.7 double plays per game - a stat that has been enhanced by 5 turned in the last two games at Houston.

So far so good.  But the White Sox and Royals are both 8-3.  So the Tigers actually are in 3rd place.

Hmmmm  .  .  .