h St. Petersburg, and he scored 141 pointin Fanclub Dölbau 14.08.2018 10:46
von huangjian123 • | 355 Beiträge | 3550 Punkte
The Detroit Tigers certainly weren’t supposed to be here at this stage of the major league season. Not at all.
Only a season after finishing 38 games behind in the American League Central with a 64-98 record and a veteran roster led by one of the major league’s highest-paid players in Miguel Cabrera Lawrence Taylor Jersey , they’re 36-37 and are right behind Cleveland in the division.
If they can beat the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ball Park on Tuesday night, the Tigers — these no-name Tigers — would be at .500 for the first time since early April.
And it’s not so much how they’re doing it — with surprisingly strong pitching and a better-than-expected offense — but the players they’re doing it with. Even with Cabrera out for the rest of the season with a ruptured biceps tendon, they’ve won five in a row and six of eight with a not-well-known cast.
Not that they care.
“We just go out there and try to get every single win. That’s it. We got close (to the Indians) a couple of weeks ago and then we’re here again,” center fielder Leonys Martin told reporters after a three-game weekend sweep of the White Sox in Chicago. “We only care about getting every single game. That’s it.”
The Detroit bullpen has been especially good behind a surprisingly efficient starting pitching staff, allowing only one run and 12 hits in 17 1/3 innings during the five-game streak –and while walking only one and striking out 20.
Closer Shane Greene saved each of the first four games of the streak, and right-handed setup man Joe Jimenez hasn’t allowed an earned run in 18 of his last 19 games.
Left-hander Matthew Boyd (4-4), who opposes Reds right right-hander Sal Romano (3-7) on Tuesday night, was 6-11 with a 5.27 ERA last season, but he has won his last two starts and has trimmed his ERA nearly two runs per game from a year ago to 3.23.
And then there’s left-hander Blaine Hardy (3-1) Kyle Long Jersey , who had only nine career wins going into this season. He was designated for assignment in spring training and wasn’t claimed by any other team but was brought back to Detroit in May and pitched his way into the rotation. He gave up one run in 5 1/3 innings in beating the White Sox 3-1 on Sunday.
Hardy takes pride in the fact that the Tigers are closing in on a winning record.
“Any team wants to be over .500, it’s kind of a mark that lets you know that you’re playing good baseball,” he said. “When we’re within (a few games) of the Indians, that’s a good sign, especially since we go (to Cleveland for a three-game series next weekend). We can go in there and say we have full control over what the standings will be.
“It’s huge. … We need to try to make a push, and I think we’re doing a good job of it.”
The Reds are making a modest push despite losing two of three last weekend in Pittsburgh and being 16 games out of the National League Central lead. They’ve won four of six, in part because of the way Eugenio Suarez and Scooter Gennett are hitting.
Suarez has homered in each of his last two games and is among the NL leaders with 52 RBIs. During an eight-game hitting streak, Suarez is 9-for-29 (.310) with three homers, and he’s closing in on a .300 average — he’s currently at .297.
“He’s been one of the best players in the league Sam Darnold Jersey Youth ,” Reds interim manager Jim Riggleman said of his third baseman. “He’s always played his position well. He’s a smart player and he’s a very well-rounded baseball player.”
Since May 10, Gennett has raised his average from .301 to .336, with a high of .345, by getting hits in 26 of 33 games. He has a five-hit game, a four-hit game and three three-hit games during that run.
None of the Reds have faced Boyd before, and none of the Tigers have gone against Romano.
In Boyd’s last start, he gave up two runs and three hits in five innings of a 5-2 win over the Minnesota Twins on Wednesday.
Romano has lost four of his last five decisions but is coming off his best start of the season, limiting the Kansas City Royals to one run and four hits in eight innings of a 5-1 Reds victory.
Both teams had a day off Monday.
After five years back home in Russia, Ilya Kovalchuk is ready to resume his Stanley Cup chase with the Los Angeles Kings.
The high-scoring forward agreed to a three-year M.J. Stewart Youth Jersey , $18.75 million deal with the Kings on Saturday, choosing Los Angeles over several interested teams for his return to the NHL.
The 35-year-old Kovalchuk scored 816 points in 816 career games for the Atlanta Thrashers and the New Jersey Devils before leaving North America in 2013 for the Kontinental Hockey League’s SKA St. Petersburg. He led the KHL in scoring last season, and he was the MVP of the Olympic tournament in Pyeongchang while propelling the ”Olympic Athletes from Russia” to a gold medal.
”He gives us an added element of skill and scoring, along with a desire to win,” Kings general manager Rob Blake said.
Boston and San Jose were among the suitors for Kovalchuk, but the Kings made a top-dollar offer to add him to a lineup that could use another dependable goal-scorer. Kovalchuk is likely to be particularly important on the power play for the Kings, who ranked in the middle of the NHL standings in most team scoring categories.
Kovalchuk was the first Russian to be the No. 1 pick in the NHL draft when Atlanta chose him in 2001. He quickly became one of the NHL’s most consistent scorers with his wicked shot and hockey sense. He spent nearly eight years with the Thrashers and 3 seasons with the Devils, who acquired him in a trade in February 2010.
Kovalchuk will forever be the top scorer in the history of the Thrashers, who moved to Winnipeg one season after trading him to New Jersey. He shared the Rocket Richard Trophy as the NHL’s top goal-scorer in 2004 with Rick Nash and Jarome Iginla Frank Ragnow Youth Jersey , yet his 41 goals that season were only the fifth-best total during a career in which he posted a pair of 52-goal seasons for the Thrashers.
Kovalchuk had little playoff success in his NHL career until 2012, when he reached the Stanley Cup Final with the Devils after leading the Eastern Conference playoffs in scoring. New Jersey lost the Final in six games to the Kings, with Kovalchuk scoring only one empty-net goal in the series.
The Kings and Kovalchuk have had mutual interest for many years. Los Angeles pursued him in free agency in 2010 before Kovalchuk got a massive contract to stay with the Devils.
Just three seasons into a 15-year, $100 million contract with New Jersey, Kovalchuk abruptly left the NHL for St. Petersburg amid complaints about North American taxes and the distance from his family. Kovalchuk and his wife have four children.
He won two KHL championships with St. Petersburg, and he scored 141 points in 113 games over the past two seasons against the KHL’s lesser competition. Kovalchuk became a five-time Olympian in February, when he scored five goals in six games for the Russians in the watered-down Pyeongchang tournament, which included no current NHL players.
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