- ISIL creates all-female brigade to terrorize women into following Sharia law
- ISTOOK: Obama wants to be impeached
- Obama to Latin leaders: Help with border
- Military bans troops from Baptist church event honoring ‘God’s Rescue Squad’
- ‘Pocket drones’: U.S. Army developing tiny surveillance tools for the next big war
- Belgian cafe posts sign: Dogs allowed, but Jews stay out
- Gen. Dempsey: Pentagon studying Russian readiness plans not viewed ‘for 20 years’
- John McCain: Botched, two-hour execution of murderer is ‘torture’
- House GOP ready to move border bill
- Bomb squad called after live WWII artillery washes on Cape Cod beach
First-place Tigers hoping for even better 2nd half
Question of the Day
DETROIT (AP) - All year long, Jim Leyland has kept an even keel.
The Detroit manager admitted in January he was under pressure _ with his contract expiring at the end of this season _ but with his team now in a fight for the AL Central title, there’s been little talk of anything beyond the next few games.
“We’re in the race. We’ve got to fix a few things, but everybody has to fix a few things,” Leyland said recently. “There’s no perfect team in our division. We’ve got a shot, you know, and that’s what you want. It’s going to be a good race.”
It’s already been an interesting season in Detroit’s division. The Tigers struggled a bit at the start, but they return from the All-Star break with a half-game lead over second-place Cleveland. The Tigers host the Chicago White Sox _ themselves only five games back _ in a three-game series starting Friday night.
The Minnesota Twins are lurking 6 1/2 games behind Detroit.
Leyland has been hesitant to talk about the standings, especially since _ after an early surge by Cleveland _ no team has really taken control of the race.
“This is going to be up for grabs,” Leyland said. “The Twins and White Sox are right there. Cleveland’s right there.”
The Tigers haven’t had a winning record after the All-Star break since 2000. Even in 2006, when they went to the World Series, they went 36-38 in the final half of the season and made it as a wild card.
Last year, Detroit went 33-43 after the break and finished 81-81.
The Tigers made some significant moves in the offseason, adding Victor Martinez, Brad Penny and Joaquin Benoit. Martinez leads the team with a .316 batting average, joining Miguel Cabrera and Brennan Boesch to help give Detroit a productive middle of the order.
Shortstop Jhonny Peralta and catcher Alex Avila joined Cabrera, ace Justin Verlander and closer Jose Valverde on the All-Star roster.
Cabrera left the All-Star game after hurting an oblique muscle in his side while swinging, but he said he didn’t think it would keep him out when regular season play resumes.
Verlander’s performance has been particularly sparkling. He’s 12-4 with a 2.15 ERA, including an ERA of 0.64 since June 9. Verlander is the biggest reason the Tigers hold a division lead, however slim.
“Hopefully, we’ll come out of the break rejuvenated and ready to go and put some separation between them and ourselves,” he said.
Although a handful of players are having big seasons, the Tigers aren’t without problems. Brandon Inge is hitting .184 and Ryan Raburn is at .213. Aside from Verlander, none of the starters has an ERA under 4.00.
President wants everyone but himself to pay more
- 'We're coming for you, Barack Obama': Top U.S. official discloses threat from ISIL terrorists
- NAPOLITANO: What if our democracy is a fraud?
- 'Pocket drones': U.S. Army developing tiny spies for the next big war
- ISTOOK: Obama wants to be impeached
- Ted Nugent loses second casino gig for 'racist remarks'
- Michelle Obama says money in politics is bad, asks donors for 'big, fat check'
- Ohio university quiz implies atheists are naturally smarter than Christians
- Russia shipping sophisticated weapons systems to Ukraine separatists
- EDITORIAL: Detroit's water 'spigot bigots'
- 'Straight White Guy Festival' supposedly set for Ohio park
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq