Detroit Tigers at Chicago White Sox Game 161 Preview, TV, Lineup
By Matt Pelc
Detroit Tigers (73-87) at Chicago White Sox (76-85) — 3:10 PM ET
U.S. Cellular Field — Chicago, IL
Radio: 97.1 The Ticket (click for affiliates)
Weather: 61 degrees, cloudy
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Not many thought the Detroit Tigers’ 2015 season would end so unceremoniously, but here we are. With two losses to open this series, the Tigers have guaranteed themselves a last place finish for the first time since 2008.
So with no playoff berth is on the line, nothing to play for but pride as the Tigers and their fans look toward 2016. But before they can do so, they will play in their 161st and final game of the season (No 162 this season since the DET/CLE rainout from earlier this month will not be made up since it has no playoff implications).
When We Last Met
It is fitting for the season’s penultimate game that the Tigers bullpen would ruin another sparkling gem from Justin Verlander. With a 3-2 lead heading into the bottom of the ninth inning with uh-closer Neftali Feliz trying to record the save, the White Sox predictably walked off.
The loss not only secured Detroit’s place in the cellar, but also a guaranteed top ten draft pick, which means if they sign a free agent that has been tendered an offer by his current team, they will not have to relinquish their first round draft pick in next June’s draft.
So there’s that…
Subject to a lot of controversy following his last start, Daniel Norris (2-2, 4.09) will finish the 2015 season as the Detroit Tigers starter. One start after perhaps his best outing as a Tiger, where he was perfect against these Chicago White Sox over five innings, he hit a rough patch against the Texas Rangers. While his defense helped to inflict most of the damage, Norris ended up allowing six runs (two earned) in just 1.2 innings of work.
But a lot of fans and the media took manager Brad Ausmus to the woodshed for letting Norris throw 54 pitches in the first inning and then sending him back out their for a second inning that he could not survive. Both Ausmus and Norris played down the controversy, but it will be interested to see how the pitcher of the Tigers future will fare in just his fourth start since coming back from arm issues.
Chicago’s final game of 2015 will feature 22-year old rookie Frankie Montas (0-1, 5.73) with the second start of his career. Part of the White Sox September call-ups, Montas received his first career start in Detroit on Sept. 20 when he went just three innings, allowing six runs on six hits. He was 5-5 with a 2.97 ERA and 1.223 WHIP in 23 starts with AA Birmingham this season.
Detroit Tigers Lineup
Miguel Cabrera revealed he has been dealing with injuries much of the second half of the season, which is why Brad Ausmus has been giving him so much time off down the stretch. He is not in the final starting lineup and probably won’t be used a pinch hitter, assuring his fourth batting title in the last five years with a .338 average.
JD Mart DH
- Miguel Cabrera — Day-to-Day
- Victor Martinez — Day-to-Day
- Jose Iglesias — Day-to-Day
- Anibal Sanchez –Out for the Season
- Joe Nathan — Out for the Season