Oct 17, 2013; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers catcher Alex Avila (13) reacts as he after he was hit in the face mask by a foul ball during the top of the fourth inning in game five of the American League Championship Series baseball game against the Boston Red Sox at Comerica Park. Avila would leave the game in the bottom of the fourth inning. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Detroit Tigers Links 10/19: Facing Elimination

 

Alex Avila and Catchers Who Get Hit in the Body – FanGraphs

Spend enough time around the Detroit Tigers and you’re certain to see Alex Avilatake an absolute beating. He took a beating in Thursday’s Game 5 against the Boston Red Sox, and was removed during the game in favor of Brayan Pena. The main issue? Avila got run over at the plate by fellow catcher David Ross and wound up with a knee injury. Shortly thereafter, Avila took a foul tip right off the chin, with Ross this time standing in the batter’s box. Ross, of course, didn’t intend to knock Avila out. Surely, catchers are more sympathetic when they inflict pain on other catchers. But talk to the Tigers and they’ll tell you this is a pattern. They’ll tell you Avila get knocked around more than any catcher they’ve seen.

What’s Wrong With Prince Fielder – Bless You Boys

Part of Fielder’s issue has been an inability to get the ball into the air. In his 41 plate appearances during the 2013 playoffs, he has struck out six times, walked twice, and has 15 ground ball outs with 8 fly ball outs to go with his nine base hits. In 21 plate appearances during the ALCS, Fielder has grounded out eight times and flied out three times. If he can’t get the ball into the air, he’s not going to have many extra base hits.

Leyland: Using Martinez as catcher, Cabrera as DH ‘an option’ for Game 6 – MLive

Leyland said starting Victor Martinez at catcher and Miguel Cabrera as the designated hitter Saturday in Game 6 of the American League Championship Series is “an option” if Avila is unable to play due to his knee injury. Boston leads the best-of-seven series, three games to two.

Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander are Tigers’ last chance, but they’ll take it – Detroit News

Scherzer has been fully illuminated all season, a smart, competitive tactician who went 21-3 and will win the Cy Young. In Game 2 against the Red Sox, he pitched seven innings of two-hit ball and struck out 13. The Red Sox famously won on David Ortiz’s grand slam off Joaquin Benoit, but they didn’t solve Scherzer, and they didn’t solve Verlander the next game.

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