Fat Guy’s Corner

No explaining

Jeff Day — Sports Columnist

Jeff Day — Sports Columnist

The Fat Guy went down on Friday night to watch his beloved Detroit Tigers baseball team in Cleveland. It was announced as a sellout the night before on television, but I took a chance. My two friends and I ended up sitting in right field in the Budweiser Patio section. What a great night it was for baseball. It was hot and humid until the sun went down. I thought it was the biggest series of the season for the Tigers. The series, however, was way more important to the Cleveland Indians. The Indians were at home and only a half game behind Detroit in the standings. I thought that more than likely, the four-game series would end up a 2-2 split. However, I was wrong on that one. The Tigers ended up taking three of four and opened up a threeand a-half game lead on the Tribe. Detroit stomped them in the first two games, including a 7-0 win at the game I attended. Detroit has just dominated the boys from the Mistake on the Lake on the diamond here in 2013. Sometimes you just can’t explain why a certain team has your number. The Tigers need to ride this nice series victory and start running away with American League Central. This waiting until September to win the division should not happen here in 2013. The bullpen needs to step up and it has three months to shore up that mess out there.

Justin Verlander needs to be sharper down the stretch. Justin’s velocity has suffered this year and one has to wonder if the last two years have caught up to his arm. The post-season and pitching late into numerous ball games has to have taken a little bit of a toll. The next question is, when will Max Scherzer lose a ball game? He should have won Monday against Cleveland because he pitched well enough the Tigs just couldn’t score for him. The funny thing is, usually they give Max tons of runs! The All- Star break is right around the corner and this Tigers team is in pretty good shape overall, I believe.

Shining stars

Let’s hear it for the Detroit Tigers on this year’s All-Star roster. Miguel Cabrera is the lone position-player starter. The reserves include Prince Fielder (also home run derby participant), Jhonny Peralta and Torii Hunter. The two pitchers, of course no brainers, in Max and Justin. Maybe Max will get the start? I hope so; he deserves it.

Not so free

The Red Wings and Pistons are both busy in the free-agent market this past week. The Pistons lured Josh Smith away from the Atlanta Hawks where he played for nine years. The deal is for four years and $56 million. He is only 27-years old and will be an upgrade to the Pistons’ roster for sure.

The Red Wings signed two players in Daniel Alfredsson and Stephen Weiss. Daniel played his entire 18- year career with Ottawa. He wants a shot at a Stanley Cup before his career is over. The deal counts as $5.5 million against the salary cap. Stephen Weiss leaves the Florida Panthers and signed here for 5 years and $24.5 million. Weiss is a center and is 30-years old. He will be the number-two center on Detroit’s roster. We can say bye bye to Valtteri Flippula as he is now in Tampa Bay. No great loss there!

Money man

The Detroit Lions have extended number nine Matthew Stafford’s contract. How about a solid three-year contract extension for $53 million! He did have two years left on his previous deal which paid him $23.5 million.

Mr. Stafford is now a Detroit Lamb (oops, I mean Lion) through the 2017 season. Is this a good move by the Detroit Lions? I believe it is if Stafford can stay healthy and also become more of a leader on this football team. I think this football season is a big year for Matthew Stafford. He did not play very good last season. The addition of Reggie Bush should help out the running game and Stafford’s throwing numbers! It’s hard to believe training camp is only two weeks away!! The roar is coming and I can hear it already !! thefatguy@mihomepaper.com

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