Today was the annual exhibition game between the Detroit Tigers and the Florida Southern Mocs. Since the series started in 1979 the Tigers have earned a 22-1-2 record, which is a pretty good indication of what was to come in today’s game.
Before the game even started skipper, Jim Leyland made it clear that all his regulars would get one at bat in the line up and one to two innings in the field. Andy Oliver started the game, and was impressive over three innings, giving up only one hit, allowing just a single walk, and striking out six.
The Tigers wasted no time getting on the board. Brennan Boesch doubled to center, and would later be doubled in by Prince Fielder, who received a standing ovation coming to the plate and after driving in Boesch. Fielder would later be driven in himself on a single by Delmon Young. That would be the only scoring done by Detroit’s starters.
Miguel Cabrera flashed some leather today, which was no surprise to any of his teammates. Justin Verlander tweeted,”Miggy looks great at 3rd. U can see how hard he has worked. Really slimmed down.” Ramon Santiago was rubbing in the great play to the media telling everyone “I told you.”
After the first, as promised by Leyland, the changes started coming. Nick Castellanos, Clete Thomas, James McCann, Don Kelly, Andy Dirks, were just among the many Tigers getting a chance to play in the inaugural game of 2012. Casey Crosby and Drew Smyly, who are believed to be in the running for the fifth spot in the rotation both got to pitch. Each hurling one inning.
The Tigers would go on to blowout the Moccs 11-1, boosting their lifetime record to 23-1-2 in the series. Tomorrow the Tigers will play their first Spring Training game against the Braves, at which time Doug Fister will get the nod to take the mound. The Braves are looking to redeem themselves after collapsing on the epic last day of the season in 2011. First pitch 1:05 P.M.
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