Player of the Game
Michael Brantley edged out Jason Kipnis by 0.01 points to take tonight’s player of the game with an RBI single and a score of 1.38. Kipnis had two singles and a run scored. This was the lowest winning Player of the Game score since Jeremy Accardo scored 1.03 points for an inning of scoreless relief on July 19th.
Ubaldo Jimenez had his best start of his last five as his pitched into the eighth for the first time since July 2nd. He allowed four runs (one was given up by Cody Allen in relief) and was able to stay around late by limiting his pitches. He did this by throwing strikes (he didn’t walk a batter until the 8th) and forcing the Tigers hitters to put the ball in play.
When the Tigers did put it in play, Jimenez was aided by a pair of fantastic plays by Jason Donald at third base. One is today’s Play of the Game, but the other is definitely worth a second look as well.
Rehab Update: Carlos Carrasco threw his first professional inning since undergoing Tommy John surgery at the end of 2011. He pitched for Akron in the Eastern League playoffs and threw a scoreless inning with one strike out.
Chris Perez fell into more controversy today as an he was quoted in an article written for Fox Sports bashing management. While I agree with his assessment of the Dolans and disagree with his comments about Mark Shapiro and Chris Antonetti, it will be interesting to see how those mentioned react to the statements. Any punishment or trade of Perez would be silent admittance of their failures. Their best possible move to prove him wrong would be to change strategies in the offseason. Instead of allowing the predictions of the masses to come true, they should sign Shin-Soo Choo and Chris Perez to long term contracts, keeping the players that they have developed over the past few years when they come into their prime. Of course the multiple cases of bad words towards his team, management and fans it is likely that Perez just wants to leave and do whatever he can to find a team with more save opportunities.
You can question Manny Acta leaving Jimenez in for the 8th inning, but I don’t as he was pitching well and was still well under 100 pitches. What you should question is why he brought in rookie reliever Cody Allen to face Miguel Cabrera with both Joe Smith and Vinnie Pestano available in the bullpen. While Allen has had a great season at all levels, there is no substitute for experience in a close game against such a potent offense.
Play of the Game
Final Score: Cleveland Indians 1 – Detroit Tigers 7