The Detroit Tigers have lost seven straight games. When will the pain end?
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As bad as the Tigers have played since the end of April, they are still within shouting distance of the top two teams in the AL Central, and we have seen this act before–2012 most recently as the team struggled at or below .500 for much of the first-half. Yet that Detroit Tigers team faced a much less competitive division in coming back to win it late in the season. That can’t be counted on to happen again.
Even though they are close to the top, they are also close to the bottom. Another sweep in Chicago put them there. Scary thought.
One of the reasons for the Tigers general awfulness and the lack of offensive punch has been Ian Kinsler. We talked a few days ago in Heroes and Zeroes about how Kinsler has often struggled in the second halves during his career, just like last year. It appears he is starting the trend early. For success and a rejuvenation of this club, he needs to shake it off and get better.
Drew VerHagen, who has been out since Spring Training has been activated in Toledo, but to make room for him Luke Putkonen was released. The righty reliever spent time in Detroit last year until he was injured and released, but then re-signed with the club in spring training.
Last-place Tigers? It could happen soon – Steve Schrader, Detroit Free Press
"And last place in the AL Central is a place the Tigers haven’t seen since a 4-7 start in 2011. They haven’t been last this late in a season since 2008, when they finished 74-88 and in the division cellar."
Detroit Tigers Need To Get More Offense Out Of Ian Kinsler – Brad Faber, Rant Sports
"Sure, Kinsler’s lack of power wasn’t much of an issue earlier on in the season when he was getting a lot of base hits, but the fact that it is now June and he has only hit one home run to go along with a lowly .092 ISO is fairly alarming. After all, he hit 17 homers last year and was twice a 30-30 man during his tenure with the Texas Rangers.Of course, it is also important to remember that Kinsler faded mightily after a strong first half last season, hitting only .239/.270/.357 after the All-Star break and then putting up a .083/.154/.083 triple-slash against the Baltimore Orioles in the 2014 ALDS. Perhaps that was a sign of what was to come."
"Who’s hot: RHP Drew VerHagen, who has been sidelined since the start of the season because of back problems, was activated from the disabled list Tuesday. … …Who’s not: The Tigers have released RHP Luke Putkonen (0-0, 32.40 ERA). Putkonen, who signed a minor league contract with the Tigers in late April, had been on the disabled list with right elbow problems. …"