We all know we are clueless as to what to expect from our Tigers this year. I personally feel like I don't see a drive in this team most nights. Just not sure what the attitude is although I hear all the time that they are all very close and have a good time playing together. Just seems like they aren't producing so often and that they get a bit preoccupied when they seem to put together some tough wins.
The A's gave them all they could handle. It really was an amazing success story for these Oakland A's too. Starting 3 rookie pitchers, an MLB playoff first, they all put up fantastic outings and held their own the whole series. Giving up very few ERs while trying to figure out the fantastic pitching of the Tigers.
The A's played hard and had what I thought a winning formula against us. With us not hitting like we have struggled with for a month at least it was tough to see us taking this series. They have far superior defense, while we have very bad defense. The writing on the wall was there for defense to play an important role in these close games. Instead of it costing the Tigers the series it probably cost the A's who had some very costly mistakes on defense. Coco Crisp especially made some huge errors, but the errors they made seemed to get taken advantage of more than ours.
Then we have them as a team of guys that can hit the ball out of the park all through the order. They never really threatened in that regard except to take out Valverde, or Benoit with some ugly innings. Valverdew blew a 3-1 lead in Game 4 to lose the clinching game. Valverde is a FA at the end of the year and I'd rather see him doing drywall anchors than re-sign with Detroit.
It all came down to starting pitching though and the Tigers rolled through the series with quality starts in 4/5 games and might have gotten 5 if the questionable call of Leyland removing Scherzer early in Game 5. Verlander after giving up a lead off HR to Coco Crisp to start the series went didn't give up a run the next 7 IP in Game 1 and pitched a CG SHO in Game 5. Racking up 22 strikeouts in 16 IP. They never had a chance in Game 5.
Now we wait for Game 5 of NY vs. BAL. Baltimore wins and we get home field. NYY win we go on the road. All 4 Division Series went 5 games this year. Another MLB 1st. So we aren't the only one that won't have our #1 in Game 1. The Tigers rotation, however is probably much deeper than anyone else we will play this year, and this is our true strength.