The Tigers and Victor Martinez finalize their deal

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V-Mart has passed his physical and is now officially a Detroit Tiger. Deep thoughts:

  • I don’t like the “first initial, first few letters of the last name” nickname construction like “V-Mart,” but  I do wish that someone named “Sam Martinez” would become a big star so I could call him S-Mart;
  • If only they had done this two days ago before the Red Sox had offered him arbitration then the Tigers wouldn’t have to give up a first round pick.  Or, I suppose the Sox could have just offered it earlier. Maybe double-secret deals and offers would help us out here;
  • The Tigers may be pretty darn tough in the AL Central next season.  I don’t think they’ll stay tough over the length of Martinez’s contract, but they’ll be good next year.

 

 

Clayton Kershaw struggles with control, walks six Marlins

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Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw entered Wednesday night’s start against the Marlins without having issued a walk in his previous three starts. In fact, his last walk came on April 3 when he issued a free pass to Paul Goldschmidt with the bases empty and two outs in the bottom of the first inning. All told, Kershaw was on a streak of 26 walk-less innings before he took the mound at home to take on the Marlins.

Kershaw started off Wednesday in character, striking out the side in the first inning. He issued a walk in a tough second inning, but escaped without allowing a run. Kershaw walked two more in the third and again danced out of danger. In the fourth, Kershaw walked Lewis Brinson to load the bases with no outs and — you guessed it — didn’t end up allowing a run. His errant control finally came back to bite him in the fifth when Kershaw issued back-to-back two-out walks, then served up a three-run home run to Miguel Rojas down the left field line. His night was done when he completed the inning. Five innings, three runs, five hits, six walks, seven strikeouts, 112 pitches.

The six walks Kershaw issued over five innings marked his first six-walk outing since April 7, 2010 when he issued six free passes to the Pirates in 4 2/3 innings. The only other time he walked as many was on August 3, 2009 against the Brewers in a four-plus inning outing. Kershaw hasn’t even walked five batters in an outing recently — the last time was September 23, 2012 against the Reds.