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Overmatched Miguel Cabrera sees record on-base streak end

Oct 15, 2013, 8:16 PM EDT

Miguel Cabrera, Junichi Tazawa AP

Miguel Cabrera‘s record streak of having reached base in 31 straight postseason games was snapped Tuesday when he went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts in the 1-0 loss to the Red Sox.

Obviously, there’s no shame in that. Even Cabrera mixes in an 0-for every once in a while. But the fashion in which it happened today was really quite stunning; as WEEI’s Alex Speier noted, Cabrera swung and missed at eight fastballs over the course of his four at-bats.

Now, Cabrera isn’t a Joe Mauer or a Marco Scutaro; he’s always mixed in his fair share of swings-and-misses. But eight in a game, just on the fastball? Some quick and very dirty math: Cabrera typically sees 16-17 pitches per game and swings and misses at just under 10 percent of them. That 1.6 misses per game. About 60 percent of the pitches he sees are fastballs, so, basically, he tends to swing and miss at one fastball per night. Today, against John Lackey and Junichi Tazawa, it was eight.

Of course, Cabrera is hurt. We know that. But the popular narrative the last few days has been that he’s doing better in batting practice and looking better in the field and on the basepaths. There’s no denying it, though: his bat looked slow today. Expect Game 4 starter Jake Peavy to keep attacking him with fastballs on the outside corner until he does something with one.

  1. dondada10 - Oct 15, 2013 at 10:25 PM

    I’d be reticent to write Miggy off.

    • professorperry - Oct 16, 2013 at 12:32 AM

      Me too. But the first and third, one out, in the 8th, was huge. Tazawa just threw him fastballs away, the last few not even in the strike zone, and let Miggy swing and swing. Lots of ways for the tying run to score there if Miggy can make contact.

  2. stex52 - Oct 16, 2013 at 8:01 AM

    No one in his right mind would write Cabrera off. But he does seem to be just a fraction behind at the moment. It can happen to anyone, especially at the end of the season (and hurt, too).

  3. 2dmo4 - Oct 16, 2013 at 9:59 AM

    I would definitely never say that going into an at bat that Miggy is ever “overmatched”.

  4. jeffchadwick - Oct 16, 2013 at 10:13 AM

    So much disgust for Tigers fans, I don’t know where to begin. Cabrera (and Fielder) came up so small yesterday, it wasn’t funny. Something like $400 million in contracts, and neither could come up with a play – any play – to tie up that game in the 8th. Just a disgrace. And the so-called best pitcher in the game gave up a meatball to a guy hitting .100 this postseason. That’s right, Verlander could have been better. And that strike two call on Peralta in the ninth was a disgrace.

    • stex52 - Oct 16, 2013 at 10:28 AM

      So………..How did you like the game overall?

  5. mgv38 - Oct 16, 2013 at 12:28 PM

    The explanation is clear: Cabrera had a higher BAC during the game than he normally does. Damn 4:00 starts.

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