Games » Detroit TigersApr5
Opening Day: April 5, vs. Tigers
Greinke throws 6 innings, gives up 1 earned run, walks only 1 (and that one was pretty much intentional), hands a 2-run lead to the bullpen and they immediately ‘shit the bed’ (the phrase sometimes used in the majors for what KC’s bullpen did). I’ve got no idea if I can say ‘shit the bed’ on this website. How about s—t the bed? Or ‘pooped the sheets’ (not nearly as satisfying). How about ‘STB’? It could be a category. We need to decide this because I think it might come up again.
When a reliever is given a lead the last thing he wants to do is start walking people. Especially if the lead is more than one run. A pitcher would be better off giving the hitter the ball and letting him throw it into the outfield…maybe someone would catch it. When Colon faced Sizemore in the 7th, the ball could’ve been hit onto 1-70 and the Royals would still have the lead. Instead the Tiger’s #8 hitter (and theoretically he’s hitting 8th for a reason) was walked on 5 pitches and, bingo, the tying run’s at the plate.
To make things worse, Sizemore was the leadoff batter of the inning. Leadoff walks score the majority of the time and the Royals pitchers did nothing to screw up that stat.
The Royals bullpen was last in the AL in 2009 with a 5.02 ERA. You’ve gotta give them credit for being consistent.
It could be worse
You could be Willie Bloomquist. He gets a start on opening day and drops an infield pop-up that lets a run in (to be fair…when did I start that policy?…it was windblown and much tougher than it looked) and strikes out three times, once looking. On the other hand, he made the defensive play of the game on a screamer down the line that would’ve scored another run if he hadn’t caught it.
Behind 1-2, he battled until he got something he could handle on the 8th pitch and put it in the cheap seats. The swing that really impressed me was right before the homer: with 2 strikes he got a breaking pitch in the vicinity of his head, but he hung in there. (I’ve had that pitch thrown at me. My head wanted to stay, but my ass insisted on leaving.) When the ball began to drop into the zone, Betancourt put on an emergency hack and fouled it off. Good two-strike approach that got him to a better pitch.
Bad call in the 7th
Royals down by 4, runners at 1st and 2nd one down. 8 outs left to score 4 runs. The #2 hitter Podsednik’s at the plate. Could be the last trip through the top of the order, the best chance to have a big inning. Podsednick singles up the middle, the centerfielder is charging towards home to pick up the ball and make the throw. Kendall, the runner at second is sent home and thrown out.
Seems like a bad call. (Sorry, I’ve coached third a lot and I sympathize…let me try again). Horrible call. One run isn’t that important. Hold the runner and you have your best hitter, Butler, at the plate with one down and the bases loaded. No place to put him and he represents the tying run. He’s going to get pitched to. After Kendall was thrown out the tying run was represented by the on-deck hitter, Ankiel. He never made it to the plate that inning.
When you’re short on talent, you’ve gotta play smart…and this wasn’t.