The last time we checked in with the Detroit Free Press, columnist/hack Jeff Seidel was making fun of San Francisco baseball fans for eating food that tastes good and for attending games at a ballpark with a slide and a bear-building workshop. The Pulitzer committee should be calling him any day now.
Seidel actually played things pretty close to the vest with a vanilla column after the San Francisco Giants’ 8-3 win in Game 1, but that doesn’t mean “FreeP” isn’t providing laughs on this lovely Thursday. Just check out the knowledge dropped by some guy named George Sipple on the Giants’ DH options:
One option Bochy could have used was to have Buster Posey be the DH, with Hector Sanchez at catcher and Eli Whitehead as the third catcher. But Whitehead was left off the roster, as he was in the previous two playoff rounds.
It looks like someone figured out that Eli’s last name isn’t “Whitehead” and corrected that error (or “era,” as Dick Stockton would say), but it’s not like a simple pimple-related spelling miscue is the only thing wrong with this paragraph. Why on earth would Sanchez catch with Posey as the designated hitter? Isn’t the point of the DH position to add a hitter to your lineup who maybe, I don’t know, isn’t as good on defense?
Then again, Sipple probably thinks Whitehead’s hair is black. It probably isn’t worth it to show him that Posey’s fielding score according to Fangraphs was 7.0 this season, compared to Sanchez’s score 0f -2.1.
Free Press writer John Lowe has an overwhelmingly optimistic stat that should console Tigers fans disappointed after their ace crapped the bed in Game 1.
Don’t give up hope!
The Tigers might be down after losing Game 1 on the road, but four teams in the previous 35 World Series have done the same thing and come back to win. (Two even lost Game 2!) Here’s how:
If I was a Tigers fan, I’m pretty sure that stat would make me less hopeful.
Lowe went on to detail the road to a championship followed by those four teams — the 1978 Yankees, 1979 Pirates, 1981 Dodgers and 1992 Blue Jays. That’s all well and good, but “four teams in the previous 35 World Series” isn’t especially uplifting … especially considering he had to start that time period with those ’78 Yanks. They even produced a slide show of the eight teams that came back to win the Fall Classic after losing Game 1 on the road. Pageviews galore, I’m certain.
The Free Press sports department’s twitter feed created #TigersPepTalk (which is pretty funny in itself), then took screenshots of a #TigersPepTalk reactions from fans on Twitter. Here’s one that shows some more of that good old fashioned Detroit optimism:
That old time prediction
Bob Seger has the Tigers winning in seven games, and thinks Justin Verlander will start three times. In case you were wondering.
It’s not all bad
Mitch Albom saved FreeP’s reputation somewhat with a long, entertaining column that included this tidbit:
There are other reasons for concern. Twice in Game 1 the Tigers were robbed of base hits — maybe extra-base hits — by a diving catch from the Giants leftfielder Gregor Blanco. Beautiful plays. The kind of defense you expect in a World Series.
Contrast that with two balls hit to Delmon Young, playing leftfield only to keep his usual DH bat in the lineup. Young tried to make a throw on Zito’s single and honestly, it was like one of those blooper reels. It hit the dirt so fast, I think it killed an unsuspecting animal. Heaven forbid the game hinges on Young making a perfect throw to the plate. I’m warning you right now: Close your eyes.