Monday Mankowskis: Magglio’s Durability, Leyland’s Tightrope and a Glass Half-Full

PhilMankowski77.jpgThe Tigers must be enjoying their last day off this season, albeit in Cleveland. While they rest up for the final two weeks, we’re left to root for the White Sox to wear down the Twins over the next three days. But even under these circumstances I cannot support an Ozzie Guillen/A.J. Pierzynski-led team.

Just can’t.

  • In all the blather about Magglio Ordoñez‘s $18-million option trigger, one thing people failed to note has been his remarkable durability over the life of the contract.

    Other than the first year of the deal, 2005, when his knee was still recovering and a sports hernia limited him to 82 games, Ordoñez has played in an average of 153 games — 94 percent. Fact is, the Tigers didn’t expect much of him in ’05.

    This season he’s played in 120 of 149 games (81 percent) and if he plays in the remaining 13 games he’ll play in 82 percent.

    In all, not bad for a guy who the Tigers and their fans feared might not play more than one season — at best — in Detroit.

  • Yahoo! Sports’ Jeff Passan sets his sights on Jim Leyland today:

    Leyland is a prisoner, and isn’t that the beauty and ugliness of being a manager: While he’s only as good as his players, they get to determine how his 2009 is viewed.

    If the Tigers win the AL Central by one game, he’s a genius, a puppeteer who took a ragamuffin team and brought it into October.

    And if the Tigers lose the Central by one game, he’s no different than those Mets and Phillies and Red Sox and Angels and Indians. A good-for-nothing choker.

  • The Tigers are #10 in the ESPN Power Rankings this week. But really, who cares?

  • On this date in 1935, the Tigers clinched the pennant with a doubleheader sweep of the St. Louis Browns. Tommy Bridges wins the opener while Elden Auker takes the nightcap with a complete-game shutout. The Tigers don’t exactly finish strong: they go 1-6 to end the season.

  • In case you were wondering, on this date in 2006 the Tigers were a half-game up on the Twins. Makes today’s lead look better, doesn’t it?

Lastly, Happy Birthday to Cecil Fielder (46), the late Aurelio Lopez, Billy Muffett (79), the late (aforementioned) Elden Auker and the late John McHale, Sr. (88).

Have a great week.

Author: Mike McClary

Upbeat guy.

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