After his first two starts it looked like Phil Coke was a nice find for the Tigers starting rotation. He still may be, but his last two starts have been quite ugly when all was said and done. Both came against Seattle, so maybe, just maybe they have his number and he can shake it off against the rest of the league.
Seattle was last in the American League with a .226 batting average and 12th with 11 homers and 78 runs scored during an 8-15 start. Watching this series last week and looking at the 2 lineups you wondered if either team would even score a run. The Tigers were not exactly tearing the cover off the ball a couple weeks ago.
But they got to Coke for seven runs on eight hits, including two homers. One by catcher Miguel Olivo was helped over the fence by left fielder Ryan Raburn, but more on that later. Just add another error to the cordless barcode scanner for Raburn.
The Mariners also feasted on Coke last week at Seattle and have scored 13 runs (nine earned) on 14 hits in eight innings against Detroit’s left-handed starter. They have batted .350 against him, and every other hitter seems like Ichiro Suzuki with that productivity.
"They probably had confidence after facing him last week," Tigers manager Jim Leyland said.
Coke said, "It’s the same team, so what. The job is to get them out. I’ll be all right, though."
Good attitude. Bad pitching.