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With one hit and no walks in 25 at-bats, Jeremy Bonderman has a career on-base percentage of .040. Welcome to the National League, Mr. Bonderman. You have fun at the plate tonight, because Gary Sheffield will not be around to DH for you in this series. Yes, the joy of interleague play beckons, bringing with it fierce local rivalries like the Yankees-Mets, Dodgers-Angels and...Tiger-Diamondbacks. After all, there's only a couple of thousand miles between America's fifth- and eleventh-largest cities and we have so much in common, after all. One is a crime-ridden, polluted, failed exercise in urban planning. And the other is Detroit.
The Tigers have been spectacularly underwhelming this year, failing to achieve the success expected. This is mostly because of a pitching staff which has a collective ERA+ of 81: three of their regular starters, Rogers, Verlander and Robertson have ERAs north of six, though we only see the last-named this series. Big off-season acquisitions Miguel Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis have both disappointed, more or less: the former is on pace to drive in less than 90 runs, compared to the 110+ of the past four seasons, and Willis pitched only five innings before hitting the DL.
That said, the offense still has the potential to be dangerous, and I'd be happy to settle for two out of three, with tonight certainly being one of those, behind Dan Haren. The Rockies series went a good way to righting our ship, which was looking wobbly against the Cubs. Hopefully, we'll do better against this batch of opponents from outside the division.