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A sometimes-irreverent look at Detroit's Boys of Summer, the Tigers, as they try to return to the top of the American League Central.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

ALDS Game 5 lineups, matchups (Peralta starting at SS)

Game 5, Thursday, Oct. 10 Coliseum, Oakland, Calif.
8:07 p.m. EST 
Series tied, 2-2 [SERIES SCHEDULE]
Radio: WXYT (97.1 FM) Dan Dickerson PBP, Jim Price A; WMGC (105.1 FM) Michael Kay PBP, Aaron Boone A

(AL Central champions)
Starting pitcher: Justin Verlander (regular season: 13-12, 3.46 ERA, 217 K)
Career postseason: 13 GS, 6-4, 3.84 ERA 13 GS, 1 CG, 88K, 77.1 IP
Vs. Oak in Game 2: 
Last 3 starts at Oakland: 22 IP, 1 ER, CG
Last 3 starts overall: 19 IP, 0 ER, 33 K in 75 batters faced

Starting lineup:
(stats vs. Gray in parentheses)
CF • Austin Jackson (0-for-4, 4K)
RF • Torii Hunter (0-for-4, 2K)
3B • Miguel Cabrera (1-for-3, K)
1B • Prince Fielder (0-for-3)
DH • Victor Martinez (0-for-3)
SS • Jhonny Peralta (has not faced) 
C • Alex Avila (0-for-2, BB, K)
2B • Omar Infante (0-for-2, BB, K)
LF • Don Kelly (2-for-3)

The big news is Peralta starting at shortstop, which would seemingly be a downgrade in defense from Jose Iglesias. But here's the thing about that:
Verlander has induced two ground balls each in last 3 starts, and there have been ZERO putouts at first base (on a groundout; Fielder caught a foul fly) when he's been in. Iglesias has started two of those last three Verlander starts, and there have been two total shortstop assists in those three games (both after JV left). 
It also means that the Tigers don't have to worry as much about the possibility of Peralta making a big mistake in left. 
And Iglesias gives the Tigers a defensive option off the bench, as well as a speedy guy who can lay down a bunt. Don Kelly also once did this in a Game 5 ALDS start.

(AL West champions)
Starting pitcher: Sonny Gray (regular season: 5-3, 2.67 ERA, 64 IP, 67K)
Vs. Tigers in Game 2: 8.0 IP, 4H, 0ER, 2 BB, 9 K

(Stats against Verlander in parentheses)
CF • Coco Crisp (9-for-35, 2-2B, HR, 4 RBI, 5K)
3B • Josh Donaldson (5-for-19, 3K)
SS • Jed Lowrie (2-for-11, 2B, 2 RBI, 4K)
LF • Yoenis Cespedes (5-for-15, 2-2B, RBI, K)
DH •  Seth Smith (3-for-18, HR, 5K)
1B • Brandon Moss (2-for-15, HR, 2 RBI, 8K)
2B • Alberto Callaspo (4-for-19, 4K)
RF • Josh Reddick (3-for-21, 2B, 8K)
C • Stephen Vogt (0-for-8)



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