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 Mid-season grades 2010

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PostSubject: Mid-season grades 2010   Sun Jul 18, 2010 6:56 pm

Posted: July 18, 2010
Mid-season grades
Most Detroit Tigers met, exceeded expectations in first half of season

BY MATTHEW CAMMARATA
FREE PRESS SPECIAL WRITER


Free Press special writer Matthew Cammarata takes a look at how the Tigers performed in the first half. All statistics were entering Friday's second-half opener at Cleveland:

Exceeded expectations

Jeremy Bonderman: After a forgettable, injury-plagued 2009 season, Bonderman has bounced back to be a dependable back-of-the-rotation starter. Although he had a 4.79 ERA, Bonderman had given the Tigers at least six innings of quality work in seven of his past 10 starts.

Phil Coke: Arguably was the Tigers' most valuable pitcher. He pitched in 42 games and had not given up a run in his last 17 appearances. Coke had 11 holds as the primary setup man and a 2.48 ERA, more than two runs fewer than he had last season for the Yankees.

Enrique Gonzalez: Since being called up in June, Gonzalez pitched effectively in relief. Gonzalez had a 2.25 ERA and transitioned from being a starter at Triple-A Toledo into a long reliever for the Tigers.

Jose Valverde: With his microscopic 0.92 ERA and almost perfect 19 saves in 20 opportunities, Valverde has been one of the most dominating closers. He has been a big improvement over former closer Fernando Rodney.

Miguel Cabrera: Seems to have finally reached his full potential and is a legitimate Triple Crown candidate. Cabrera was either first or second in all three categories and was the Tigers' most clutch hitter in the first half with nine home runs in the eighth inning or later.

Danny Worth: A midseason call-up to replace Adam Everett at shortstop, Worth has been more than adequate at the plate and in the field. Worth batted a respectable .272 in 26 games and had not made an error while playing shortstop and second base.

Brennan Boesch: The biggest surprise of the season's first half and one of the biggest in baseball. Boesch, 25, led all rookies in batting average, home runs and RBIs. The former 2006 third-round draft pick was named AL rookie of the month in May and June.

Austin Jackson: Everyone expected a drop-off when the Tigers traded Curtis Granderson to the Yankees for Jackson, among others, but Jackson covered just as much ground defensively and hit at or above .300 since April 12.

Magglio Ordoez: Batted .313 with 11 home runs and 56 RBIs (both more than all last season), after being a question mark entering this year as to whether or not he could continue to contribute in the heart of the lineup.

Met expectations

Eddie Bonine: A solid middle reliever with a 2.81 ERA in 29 games. However, Bonine had given up an earned run in each of his last five appearances before the break.

Max Scherzer: After a terrible start, Scherzer was unstoppable. After returning from Toledo in May, Scherzer went 5-2 with a 2.44 ERA.

Brad Thomas: The 32-year old Aussie, who hadn't pitched in the majors since 2004, was 4-0 and lowered his ERA to 4.12 after it was over 5.00 for most of the first two months of the season.

Justin Verlander: For the third time in his career, Verlander made the All-Star team, posting an 11-5 record at the break. But his 3.82 ERA was a tad high for an ace with dominating stuff.

Carlos Guillen: Since a monthlong DL stint, Guillen has been stellar at his newest position, second base. He was hitting .289 at the end of the first half and had committed only three errors with a .982 fielding percentage.

Brandon Inge: Has recovered from off-season knee surgeries. While he didn't show the power he had in last year's first half, he was hitting .264 and playing solid at third base.

Don Kelly: Played six positions before the break and committed only one error in 66 games, mostly entering in the last couple of innings as a defensive replacement.

Ramon Santiago: For the fourth consecutive season, hit above .265 while playing solid defensively, whether at shortstop or second base.

Johnny Damon: On pace for 100 runs for the 11th time in his career. Damon's ability to draw walks and get on base has been crucial to the offense.

Armando Galarraga: His almost perfect game was the highlight of the first half, but was inconsistent in between stints in the minors.

Below expectations

Ryan Perry: After a strong start, Perry saw his ERA balloon to 5.47. Opposing batters were hitting .286 against him.

Alex Avila: After his surprising breakout season last year, Avila struggled in the first half, batting .222 with only 14 RBIs.

Gerald Laird: Looked lost at the plate, hitting a paltry .192 with two home runs and 13 RBIs. He threw out only 29% of base-stealers, compared to 42% last year.

Ryan Raburn: After playing in a career-high 113 games last season and setting career highs in home runs (16) and RBIs (45), Raburn struggled mightily, hitting .208 with two home runs.

Scott Sizemore: The team's starting second baseman out of spring training, Sizemore struggled at the plate and defensively before being sent to Triple-A Toledo.

Adam Everett: Was painful to watch at the plate, and his defensive range dropped off. After 31 games, the Tigers released the veteran shortstop.

Too little playing time to judge

Andy Oliver, Daniel Schlereth, Robbie Weinhardt

Injured

Joel Zumaya: The reliever was performing above expectations until suffering a broken right elbow while throwing a pitch.


It takes pitching, hitting and defense. Any two can win. All three make you unbeatable.
Joe Garagiola
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PostSubject: Re: Mid-season grades 2010   Sun Jul 18, 2010 10:03 pm

Roar of the Tigers midseason report card 2010
by Samara Pearlstein
July 15, 2010

Time for another one of these, oh the excitement, oh the wonder! Oh the arbitrary, not-necessarily-logic-based nature of my grading decisions!

PITCHERS

Jeremy Bonderman
Grade: B-
Reason: He has been mediocre. Im grading him up because hes already pitched more innings this year than he did in the previous two seasons COMBINED.

Eddie Bonine
Grade: B
Reason: I keep forgetting hes on the team. This could be considered a good thing or a bad thing, depending on how you view his position in the bullpen.

Phil Coke
Grade: A
Reason: Hes been good on the mound, hes been hilarious off of it. Anyone who can rock those sideburns is OK by me.

Armando Galarraga
Grade: B
Reason: He got screwed.

Enrique Gonzalez
Grade: C
Reason: Small sample size.

Fu-Te Ni
Grade: C
Reason: My head says D, but my heart says A.

Andy Oliver
Grade: C-
Reason: Small sample size also, but not in a good way. Not graded down further because hes just a kitten.

Ryan Perry
Grade: B-
Reason: I wonder what percentage of his struggles can be attributed to his arm pain.

Rick Porcello
Grade: C
Reason: FredFred, baby, what happened?

Max Scherzer
Grade: A-
Reason: His record, ERA, and WHIP are not spectacular, but I like his K/BB ratio and hes definitely had his moments. Probably could have gone B here, but he brings me too much cartoon joy and I cannot justify grading him down.

Daniel Schlereth
Grade: C
Reason: Small sample size.

Brad Thomas
Grade: B
Reason: Very eh. But he has been called upon to fill a lot of random roles this year.

Jose Valverde
Grade: A
Reason: Great pitching, great facial expressions. Great personality, brings joy to the team and to my life. So far from being Fernando Rodney, he cant see even the tip of that aggravating pointy goatee. I LOVE YOU PAPA GRANDE, NEVER CHANGE.

Justin Verlander
Grade: A
Reason: Hes an All Star, he strikes a lot of dudes out, hes trying his best to anchor the rotation. Still throws too many damn pitches, though.

Robbie Weinhardt
Grade: C
Reason: I know his big league numbers are good, but THA SAMPLE SIIIIZE.

Joel Zumaya
Grade: n/a
Reason: deceased (armplosion)


CATCHERS

Alex Avila
Grade: C
Reason: At least hes not Gerald Laird?

Gerald Laird
Grade: C-
Reason: At least hes not, um unable to play the catcher position?

INFIELDERS

Miguel Cabrera
Grade: A
Reason: Mr. First Half Awesomesauce Bombasaurus Rex-tastic. Basically.

Adam Everett
Grade: F
Reason: The Tigers bent over backwards to give him second, third, fifteenth chances. Fans bent over backwards to try to justify it to themselves. He didnt (couldnt?) take advantage. So it goes.

Carlos Guillen
Grade: A-
Reason: Mostly Im just happy that hes adapting to yet another position shift so well. Relatively speaking. This could have been MUCH worse.

Brandon Inge
Grade: B
Reason: Oh, shut up. He gets points for defense and for his hilarious, only semi-explicable stranglehold on the Player of the Game voting.

Ramon Santiago
Grade: B-
Reason: Eh.

Scott Sizemore
Grade: D
Reason: The failed experiment, doomed to forever be jealous of AJax.

Danny Worth
Grade: B-
Reason: Small sample size, but hes Not Adam Everett, so thats something.

OUTFIELDERS

Brennan Boesch
Grade: A
Reason: Oh Brennan Boesch, how do we love thee? Let us count the ways./ We love thee to the depth and breadth and height/ thy bat can reach. (so thats about 420 to center)

Austin Jackson
Grade: A
Reason: Easily the Tigers rookie of the first half if Brennan Boesch does not exist. WE ARE OVERRUN WITH OUTFIELD ROOKIE RICHES.

Don Kelly
Grade: C-
Reason: Ive got my eye on you, Kelly. I see you up there, wasting a roster spot.

Magglio Ordonez
Grade: A
Reason: It would be an A if he would grow that hair back out (alternative: start wearing his socks up).

Ryan Raburn
Grade: C
Reason: If I give Kelly a C- I kind of have to give Rhino a C. Its only fair.

DH OR WHATEVER

Traitor Damon
Grade: B-
Reason: Graded up for general positive influence on the team and solid performance. Graded down for being a filthy turncoat.

This years average is a pretty solid B-, leaning slightly towards B. The 08 average was a C /B- and the 09 average was a B-. Since I go into these report cards with absolutely no forethought whatsoever, the fact that they tend to normalize to the same level of overall annoyance with the team each year, regardless of that teams performance in the standings, is kind of amazing. At least it amazes me. Possibly I am just very easily amazed.


It takes pitching, hitting and defense. Any two can win. All three make you unbeatable.
Joe Garagiola
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