The Pace Game.

The season is just 32 games young, or rather 20% completed, and there has been plenty to love about the start of the Detroit Tigers. First off, though their home run hitting ability gets most of the press, it has been their superior starting pitching that has powered the team early on. Of course, I say that on the heels of dropping two of three to the Minnesota Twins. Jeremy Bonderman was knocked around a bit, Todd Jones blew his first save, and despite the best efforts of Mike Maroth, he ran into Johan Santana, who carried a no-hitter into the 7th inning. Nevertheless, things are looking great for the Tigers. I put together their numbers for the whole season based on the first 32 games. The offense:

Player  G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB K SB CS AVG OBP SLG OPS
 Magglio
Ordóñez
152 602 101 187 30 0 46 116 30 106 0 0 0.311 0.339 0.588 0.927
 Curtis
Granderson
162 587 86 147 30 5 25 61 96 162 15 10 0.250 0.353 0.448 0.801
 Craig
Monroe
162 587 91 137 25 0 41 101 30 162 5 0 0.233 0.274 0.483 0.757
 Chris
Shelton
162 582 91 172 30 15 51 106 51 172 0 0 0.296 0.364 0.661 1.025
 Carlos
Guillén
162 567 91 167 51 5 25 96 61 61 20 10 0.295 0.365 0.536 0.901
 Iván
Rodríguez
137 567 81 182 25 5 10 56 30 51 5 5 0.321 0.361 0.438 0.799
 Plácido
Polanco
132 547 41 157 5 0 0 51 5 20 0 10 0.287 0.304 0.296 0.600
 Brandon
Inge
152 486 91 116 30 5 35 86 51 142 0 10 0.240 0.312 0.542 0.854
 Marcus
Thames
76 218 46 66 10 0 20 30 15 25 0 0 0.302 0.375 0.628 1.003
 Dmitri
Young
51 203 25 51 15 0 0 20 10 46 5 0 0.250 0.286 0.325 0.611
 Omar
Infante
66 187 15 46 20 0 0 10 0 61 5 0 0.243 0.282 0.351 0.633
 Alexis
Gómez
66 182 35 41 10 5 0 10 10 30 0 0 0.222 0.263 0.333 0.596
 Ramón
Santiago
61 122 5 25 0 5 0 5 0 30 5 0 0.208 0.208 0.292 0.500
 Vance
Wilson
41 116 15 35 10 0 0 15 0 20 0 0 0.304 0.360 0.391 0.751
 Total 162 5554 815 1529 294 46 253 764 390 1088 61 46 0.275 0.329 0.481 0.810

Initially, I’m pleased with just how well Magglio Ordonez has been playing despite the fact that he’s not walking very much. If he is able to hold pace and play 152 games while hitting 40+ HRs, this team is going to be very successful. A few things that I don’t see happening at all include Chris Shelton‘s triple and home run totals being sustained. For Craig Monroe to come anywhere near 40 home runs, he’ll need to greatly improve his patience at the plate and take some walks. Curtis Granderson‘s pace for 96 walks is very pleasing. He is progressing nicely and the Tigers have to be thrilled with their leadoff man. I’m not at all concerned that Granderson is only on pace for 15 steals, moreso miffed that it is just a 60% success rate. If Carlos Guillen can play every game, that’d just be amazing. A 20-20 season would be icing on the cake. Brandon Inge will not hit 35 home runs, but Marcus Thames could if he finds some at-bats. Sooner or later, if Monroe continues to struggle, Jim Leyland will have to consider giving Thames more time at Monroe’s expense.

Now for the pitching:

 Player  G GS W L SV IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP BAA
 Kenny
Rogers
35 35 25 10 0 233.9 197 86 86 15 61 116 3.28 1.09 0.223
 Jeremy
Bonderman
35 35 15 10 0 227.8 197 111 111 15 51 197 4.40 1.09 0.231
 Justin
Verlander
30 30 15 15 0 183.3 167 86 76 30 56 116 3.68 1.20 0.239
 Nate
Robertson
30 30 15 10 0 182.3 162 76 66 15 46 137 3.25 1.14 0.237
 Mike
Maroth
30 30 20 10 0 177.7 187 51 51 15 66 76 2.55 1.42 0.270
 Jordan
Tata
35 0 0 0 0 70.9 46 35 30 5 35 30 3.86 1.14 0.180
 Joel
Zumaya
56 0 5 0 0 65.8 46 20 20 5 15 81 2.77 0.92 0.196
 Fernando
Rodney
66 0 5 0 25 65.8 20 0 0 0 20 61 0.00 0.62 0.093
 Jason
Grilli
35 0 0 0 0 56.7 66 35 35 0 30 20 5.40 1.63 0.289
 Jamie
Walker
46 0 0 0 0 41.5 30 5 5 5 0 51 1.04 0.69 0.188
 Bobby
Seay
35 0 0 0 0 40.5 10 10 10 0 15 30 2.25 0.63 0.083
 Todd
Jones
41 0 0 5 30 35.9 51 25 25 0 10 10 6.14 1.64 0.333
 Total     101 61 56 1382.1 1180 542 516 106 405 926 3.38 1.15 0.230

Kenny Rogers almost certainly won’t win 25 games, but he has been a great addition to the Tigers despite all the griping (from myself included) about his large contract. There is just no way that a bullpen will only be responsible for 15 decisions in a season, the wins and losses paces of individual pitchers is a tad ridiculous. I wish Mike Maroth would win 20, though, he deserves it. The strikeout paces of most of the bullpen are very encouraging. Rodney, Seay, Walker, & Zumaya are on pace for excellent strikeout-to-walk ratios… especially Walker as he has yet to walk a batter.

I’ll update these paces several times throughout the season as they will start to even out, undoubtedly. Right now, the Tigers need to rebound from a tough series in which the Twins really came to play. They head to Baltimore for a three-game set facing Daniel Cabrera in the opener. They need to exhibit more patience than they have so far and it will be rewarded by the control-leary Cabrera (25 walks in 32.1 IP).

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2 Responses to “The Pace Game.”

  1. i try to find something at google.com and take it on your site…thanks

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