UPDATE: Make it 6-0. Delmon Young singled and Johnny Peralta homered. Then Andy Dirks doubled and Joe Girardi came and got Sabathia. There are still many innings to play here, but, it looks the Tigers are World Series bound.
5:41 PM: Make it 4-0: Miguel Cabrera just hit a two-run shot in the bottom of the fourth.
5:33 PM: Like so many games this series a small lead in terms of runs feels like a bigger lead in terms of momentum. The Tigers are up 2-0 after three and a half innings, but the vibe of the game has them up by half a dozen.
Detroit scored their runs via a Delmon Young single in the first and a rally — if you can call one run a rally — in the third that could have easily led to more runs.
Prince Fielder singled, Delmon Young walked — like, he really walked — and then with two outs the Yankees put on the clownshoes: Mark Teixeira made a rather theatrical looking error on a bounding ball which loaded the bases for Andy Dirks. Dirks hit a chopper up the middle which CC Sabathia just missed. Eduardo Nunez fielded it deep behind the second base bag, but was twisting as he fielded it and ended up firing the throw into the dirt. He was lucky it didn’t get past Teixeira at first. Fielder scored.
We’re now in the top of the fourth. CC Sabathia has already thrown 73 pitches and doesn’t look like he has his best stuff at all. Max Scherzer, in contrast, has seven strikeouts while facing 14 batters through four innings of work. And not a one of them was A-Rod.
It’s not dark yet for the Yankees. But it’s getting there.
As you get ready for Memorial Day weekend and whatever it entails for you and yours, take some time to read an excellent article from Mike Bates over at The Hardball Times.
The article is about Eddie Grant. You probably never heard of him. He was a journeyman infielder — often a backup — from 1905 through 1915. If you have heard of him, it was likely not for his baseball exploits, however: it was because he was the first active baseball player to die in combat, killed in the Battle of the Argonne Forest in October 1915.
Michael tells us about more than Grant’s death, however. He provides a great overview of his life and career. And notes that Grant didn’t even have to go to war if he didn’t want to. He was 34, had the chance to coach or manage and had a law degree and the potential to make a lot of money following his baseball career. He volunteered, however, for both patriotic and personal reasons. And it cost him his life.
Must-read stuff indeed. Especially this weekend.
The Cleveland Indians will unveil a Frank Robinson statue at Progressive Field on Saturday.
Robinson’s tenure in Cleveland was not long, but it was historic. On April 8, 1975, he became the first African-American manager in Major League history. He was a player-manager. One of the last ones, in fact. He spent two years in that role and then a third year — a partial year anyway — as a manager only. Robinson would go on to manage the Giants, Orioles and the Expos/Nationals, compiling a career record of 1065-1176 in 16 seasons. He is now a top MLB executive.
Robinson was, of course, a Hall of Fame player as well, lodging 21 seasons for the Reds, Orioles, Dodgers, Angels and Indians. He won two MVP awards and hit for the Triple Crown in 1966. Overall he hit 586 home runs – 10th all time – and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1982. For an inner-circle Hall of Famer with that kind of resume he is still, strangely enough, underrated. I guess that happens when your contemporaries are Willie Mays, Hank Aaron and Mickey Mantle.
Anyway, congrats to Frank Robinson for yet another well-deserved honor in a career full of them.