Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Tigers hitting also contributing to second half surgePosted by Shlomo Sprung
If you've been paying attention to baseball over the last month, you know the Detroit Tigers are currently on an 11-game winning streak and have gradually emerged as the American League's most dangerous team going into the postseason.
A lot of that has to do with the improvement of its pitching staff. Its 4.27 ERA before the All-Star break was ranked 25th in the major leagues. Since the Midsummer Classic, the team ERA has improved to 3.73, good for eighth best in baseball. The acquisition of Doug Fister certainly has a lot to do with that.
However, the improvement of the team's offense in several statistical categories has made that half-run-per-game progression look even more dangerous and imposing.
Detroit Tigers (MLB Rank) Record Slash Line Runs Strikeouts Before All-Star Break 49-43 .264 (5)/.332 (5)/.415 (8) 413 (8) 667 (21) Since All-Star Break 37-19 .294 (1)/.349 (3)/.450 (4) 298 (4) 370 (8)
The better slash line is obviously important for the Tigers, but the team's dramatic decrease in strikeouts has been a huge factor for the offense. If Detroit can continue to cut down on the whiffs in the playoffs against opposing staffs, Jim Leyland's club has a realistic chance to represent the Junior Circuit in the World Series.