Monday, 21 October 2013

Griping about Jim Leyland has been easier than finding his replacement

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131021/caputo-griping-about-jim-leyland-has-been-easier-than-finding-his-replacement

A few bad plays negated many very good ones in Lions' loss to Bengals

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131020/caputo-few-bad-plays-negate-many-good-ones-in-lions-loss-to-bengals

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Thoughts after 3rd quarter, Bengals, Lions

- This is a very good football game between two playoff-caliber teams. The Bengals probably have the best player personnel of any team the Lions have faced this season. Their performance today is hardly a surprise. But the Lions are hanging in there pretty well.
- Tremendous catch-and-throw by Matthew Stafford to Calvin Johnson on the Lions' third quarter TD. Stafford has become more proficient

Thoughts halftime Bengals, Lions

- The Lions' special teams play has been much, much better this season, but they have had some hiccups on field goal attempts. It was very costly during the loss at Arizona. It was certainly hurtful when Cincinnati's Carlos Dunlap burst through and blocked an attempt late in the second quarter. How can a defender break through the middle of the line essentially untouched on a short attempt like

My thoughts after the 1st quarter Bengals, Lions

- Chris Houston is a good football player, but not the type of corner you'd say is a shutdown corner. On the very best of the best receivers, such as Cincinnati's A.J. Green, he is going to need help from a safety over-the-top. Sometimes the Lions leave Houston alone on an island too often. It cost them an 82-yard TD play by Green in the first quarter.
- You can see where Joseph Fauria is limited

The Tigers can win the World Series next year - this is how

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131020/caputo-tigers-can-win-the-world-series-next-year-this-is-how



Saturday, 19 October 2013

My thoughts on the Tigers World Series dream dying Saturday night in Boston

Thoughts after 6 2-3 innings, Tigers, Red Sox ALCS Game 6

- What a terrible pitch by Jose Veras. Willie Hernandez used to called pitches like that "a hanging booger." Shane Victorino wasn't going to hit his fastball. It's not like he doesn't have a good one. The guy throws gas in the mid-90s. Yet, he might as well have just screamed before Victorino hit the grand slam, "Here comes the curveball."
- Sometimes you'd settle for steady rather than flashy.

Ultimately, Michigan can't win playing that kind of defense

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131019/caputo-michigan-ultimately-cant-win-playing-this-type-of-bad-defense

Thoughts after 3rd quarter, Indiana, Michigan

- Michigan seemed to have made a lot of progress defensively after the Rich Rodriguez years, but they have clearly regressed the last couple weeks. I keep expecting Mikel Leshoure to run the wheel route out of the backfield any minute now. This has the look of Michigan, Illinois in the Rich Rod years. Who knows, perhaps the Wolverines will eke out a two-point victory today like that 67-65 gem

Tboughts halftime Indiana, Michigan

- Indiana's long pass for a touchdown in the first quarter was disturbing. Everybody knows Indiana runs a hurry-up, fast-tempo offense. Everyone knows Cody Latimer is a Indiana's most threatening receiver. There was no excuse for not being ready for the snap, nor not having bracket coverage over the top on Latimer on the play. On Indiana's second long TD pass to Shane Wynn, this one in the second

Thursday, 17 October 2013

My thoughts on the Tigers' 4-3 loss to the Red Sox in Game 5 of the ALCS


Tigers have plenty of aces, but they need hitters, too
http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131018/caputo-tigers-have-plenty-of-aces-but-they-need-some-hitters My Column

Thoughts after 8 innings, Red Sox, Tigers ALCS Game 5

- Talk about movement on a fastball. Red Sox closer Koji Uehara doesn't throw hard, but the ball comes out of his big glove late, making his velocity deceptive, and the movement on his fastball is almost freakish.
- The way Jose Veras has thrown tonight points to how Jim Leyland pulled him too soon in Game 2 after he allowed a double. He threw really hard in the eighth inning, and displayed an

Thoughts after 6 innings, Red Sox, Tigers, ALCS Game 5


- Anibal Sanchez did an excellent job of settling down following a rough start after three innings. He minimized the damage a great deal by holding the Red Sox scoreless in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings. It has opened up the possibility of a Tigers' comeback. The Tigers are doing a decent job of hanging in there. We'll see what their much-maligned bullpen has.
- Austin Jackson, on the rare

Thoughts after 2 innings, Red Sox, Tigers, ALCS Game 5

- Miguel Cabrera is having a rough night. Horrible decision to try to score on the base hit, inexcusable error. The Red Sox have clearly adjusted to Anibal Sanchez after seeing him Game 1. They are not swinging at nearly as many pitches out of the strike zone.
- I don't why, but I always laugh when I think of "small" ball after seeing somebody like Mike Napoli hit a 450-foot home run. By the way,

A little change in lineup produces big results for Tigers

My column http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131017/caputo-a-little-different-lineup-produces-big-results-for-tigers

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Detroit Tigers turning weak hitting to an art form

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131015/caputo-tigers-making-weak-hitting-an-art-form

Prince Fielder: Looks perplexed at plate

My thoughts on the Tigers' 1-0 loss to the Red Sox in Game 3 of the ALCS

Thoughts after 7 innings, Red Sox, Tigers, ALCS Game 3

- The Tigers needed Omar Infante to come through in that spot. He had a great matchup against Boston left-hander Craig Breslow and didn't take advantage of it. Breslow looked like he was going to be in trouble after walking the left-handed hitter Alex Avila.
- The pitch Mike Napoli hit for a home off Justin Verlander in the seventh inning wasn't that bad a pitch. It was 96 mph, but it was out

Thoughts after 5 innings, Red Sox, Tigers, ALCS Game 3

- Jhonny Peralta has had some hot streaks before for the Tigers, never this consistently in such pressure situations. Yeah, I do believe he is earning himself a new contract for next season, despite the PED suspension. He could have handled it better on and off the field. Jose Iglesias would be ideal as the utility infielder.
- The Red Sox inability to put quality swings against the Tigers'

Monday, 14 October 2013

Just the beginning of the pain and gain for Tigers, Red Sox

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131014/caputo-just-the-beginning-of-the-pain-and-gain-for-tigers-red-sox

Sunday, 13 October 2013

My thoughts on the Tigers' stunning 6-5 loss to Boston in Game 2 of the ALCS


Thoughts after 8 innings, Tigers, Red Sox, ALCS Game 2

Jose Veras, Drew Smyly, Al Alburquerque, Joaquin Benoit...Max Scherzer had thrown 108 pitches, the borderline for being done. But this is the playoffs. I don't think it is an unfair second guess to wonder if manager Jim Leyland would have better served to leave Max Scherzer in this game. I think pretty much everybody in this town suspected the Tigers have been living on borrowed time with their

Thoughts after 5 1-2 innings Tigers, Red Sox Game 2 ALCS

- You have to wonder what John Farrell was waiting for. I mean there seemed to be zero chance Clay Buchholz was going to get out of the jam. Zero. His pitches had flattened out and it was as if he was throwing glorified batting practice. And the Red Sox bullpen is well rested. It's the type of thing that could cost Boston the series.
- Anybody still want Miguel Cabrera to sit out? Even at less

Lions' victory over Browns most significant yet this season

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131013/caputo-lions-victory-over-the-browns-most-significant-yet

Thoughts after 3rd quarter Lions, Bears

- What a waste because of the interception late in the third quarter, but this is still a game the Lions' should win. We'll see if they have taken a step forward in regard to competitive poise during the fourth quarter. A top NFL team shakes off that interception.
- One of the questions developing earlier in the season was whether Reggie Bush's success was because of the attention on Calvin

Thoughts halftime Lions, Browns

- Horrible end of the first half for the Lions.
- There are two things the Lions can't afford. One  is not having Calvin Johnson in the lineup. Another is Johnson dropping passes. Pretty uncharacteristic, isn't it? That was a huge first-down drop during the second quarter. It changed the course of the game as the Browns responded with a TD drive.
- I have yet to see anything from Patrick Edwards

Thoughts after 1st quarter Lions, Bears

- Matthew Stafford has done a terrific job of spreading the football around. Some might say he has missed on a couple passes, but I saw it more like Kris Durham and Calvin Johnson missed making makeable receptions.
- Not a good quarter for Joe Haden, the Browns' much-hyped cornerback. The Lions are actually exploiting him more than avoiding him.
- With all due respect to tight end Joseph Fauria,

How I see the Lions game at Cleveland Sunday unfolding

Saturday, 12 October 2013

My thoughts on the Tigers 1-0 victory over the Red Sox in Game 1 of the ALCS

Thoughts after 8 innings, Tigers, Red Sox ALCS Game 1

- This is the ultimate example about why PITCHING IS THE GAME.  All other factors pale in comparison.
- The Tigers have left too many runners on base in this game. It's the type of thing that can be haunting in the end.
- Fans are getting all over Joe West, the home plate umpire. I have no idea why MLB assigned him this game because of his many issues, but I do believe he is calling a good game

Michigan kept playing with fire and was finally burned by Penn State

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131012/caputo-michigan-kept-playing-with-fire-and-was-finally-burned-by-penn-state

Thoughts after 6 innings, Tigers, Red Sox ALCS Game 1

- Anibal Sanchez has pitched some tremendous games since joining the Tigers near the trade deadline in 2012, but he has never had better command of the situation than he had after five innings. It was utter brilliance. David Ortiz is one of the best clutch hitters in recent MLB history. Striking him out with one out and a runner on second in the sixth was masterful, too. But the topper was 

Thoughts halftime Michigan, Penn State

- The turnovers by Michigan quarterback Devin Gardner are profoundly disappointing. He's a terrific talent, but it's almost like he turns over the ball two or three times each half. You see one extreme to the other. You know, like his brilliant run in the second quarter followed almost immediately by an inexplicable and inexcusable interception. The idea this is just his 11th start at QB and he

My prediction on the ALCS

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Justin Verlander, Miguel Cabrera difference for Detroit Tigers - again

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131011/caputo-brilliance-of-verlander-and-cabrera-carry-tigers-again

Thoughts after 7 innings, Tigers, A's, ALDS Game 5

Haven't heard much Justin Verlander bashing lately? Wonder why? This is truly a gem. It could one of those nights for the ages. We'll see.
- If you looked at the Tigers in the middle of the season, the two players fans had turned against the most were Verlander and Victor Martinez. It goes to show you how the game does, eventually, play to track records. Premier players eventually become premier

Thoughts after 3 1-2 innings,Tigers, A's, ALDS Game 5

- Oakland starter Sonny Gary doesn't have his good breaking ball tonight, and doesn't have a Plan B. It's kind of like Rick Porcello has been throughout much of his career, except with Porcello it's his two-seam fastball. Miguel Cabrera has been driving the ball deeper the last couple games, but it's been awhile since he's pulled one with that kind of authority. Again, he showed why he is the top

It's on Justin Verlander tonight - and that could be a great thing

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131010/caputo-its-on-justin-verlander-tonight-and-that-could-be-a-great-thing/1

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Reports of the Tigers' demise were great exaggerated

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131009/caputo-reports-of-the-tigers-demise-were-greatly-exaggerated

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Thoughts after 6 2-3 innings, A's, Tigers, ALDS Game 4

- The Giants won the World Series last year after facing six elimination games. Playoff baseball can turn on a dime. We're seeing a classic example tonight. This is a great game, which could turn into a classic. It's amazing considering how it began under a such dark cloud of the Tigers' hitting slump. Certainly the crowd noise has picked up at Comerica Park.
- Victor Martinez is the consummate

Thoughts after 5 innings, A's, Tigers, Game 4, ALDS

- The decision to put Jhonny Peralta back on the roster and in left field looks genius right now. That was a huge home run, one which could turn around the series.
- The Tigers are playing well defensively tonight. It's been a big factor in the game so far. Alex Avila, Torii Hunter and Prince Fielder have all made good plays defensively. Those plays kept the game from getting out of hand and

Monday, 7 October 2013

Detroit Tigers only have themselves to blame for dire situation

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131007/caputo-tigers-have-only-themselves-to-blame-for-dire-situation

Thoughts after 5 innings, A's, Tigers, ALDS Game 3

- The worst part for Anibal Sanchez is he got ahead in the count to Brandon Moss before Moss clubbed his home run. The second home run, by Seth Smith, was wind driven to left, but the conditions should work well for the Tigers because they have more right-handed thunder, at least by reputation, than the A's.
- Jim Leyland had little choice but to put left-hander Jose Alvarez into the game after

Thoughts after 4 innings, A's, Tigers, ALDS, Game 3

- The Tigers were kind of at the last-chance corral with moves to make to wake their slumping hitting attack. The last chance was Jhonny Peralta. The importance of his two-run single in the fourth inning can't be overstated. It was the type of moment which can change the course of a playoff series, especially a five-game set..
- Although he didn't exactly rip his base hit in the fourth inning, it

Thoughts after 3 innings A's, Tigers, ALDS, Game 3

- I'm sure there are many pointing to Miguel Cabrera's health as the reason he made the run-causing error at third base during the third inning. However, he moved relatively well to make a play earlier in the game and ripped a hit his first time up. He has hit the ball on the nose a few times in this series. His ailments are no excuse for the error. It was just a misplay.
- The A's have done a

Sunday, 6 October 2013

Detroit Lions surrendered to the moment - again - in Green Bay

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131006/caputo-detroit-lions-surrendered-to-the-moment-again-in-green-bay/1

Thoughts after 3rd quarter Lions, Packers

- The Lions' secondary is often maligned, but it has done an excellent job in the scoring zone today. It's no small accomplishment. A strength of the Packers' receivers is production in the scoring zone. Green Bay QB Aaron Rodgers is a master at the back-shoulder throw. None of it is working today, at least so far, because of the coverage of the Lions' defensive backs. Conversely, letting James

Thoughts at halftime Lions, Packers

- The Lions' offense without Calvin Johnson is like the Tigers' hitting attack with Miguel Cabrera ailing. It's just not the same. Detroit's defense is stepping forward today, though.
- I don't understand the thought process behind constantly throwing third-down passes short of first-down yardage, especially on out routes, and not slant passes caught in stride in which there is at least a chance

Thoughts after 1st quarter Lions, Packers

- Ah, there is so separation from the Lions wide receivers without Calvin Johnson out. The Packers' defense has crept a lot closer to the line of scrimmage.
- Holding the Packers to a field goal after a 15-play, 72-yard drive was beyond huge. Certainly, to this point, this game has been anything but the shootout some were expecting.
- A lot of people will be down on Ndamukong Suh for getting a

Detroit Tigers need home to be where the runs are

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131006/caputo-tigers-need-home-to-be-where-the-runs-are/1

Saturday, 5 October 2013

This Michigan victory was a step forward not back

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131005/caputo-this-michigan-victory-was-a-step-foward-not-back

Thoughts after 3rd quarter Minnesota, Michigan

- I keep expecting Michigan's defense to be more stout, but it just isn't happening. Minnesota's offense is terrible by Big Ten standards, yet the Gophers have moved the ball surprisingly well. It looks to me like a team such as Northwestern will just roll against this defense. Maybe even Indiana, which remains defensively challenged, but has an underrated offense.
- Devin Gardner is playing much

Thoughts halftime Minnesota, Michigan

- Minnesota's doing the type of things necessary to give Michigan problems today. The Gophers are controlling the clock. They pinned the Wolverines against the goal line with a punt. They haven't turned the ball over. However, this is a team Michigan matches up with well. The Wolverines should win this game rather handily, in my opinion. It's a matter of Michigan opening up their offense a bit

Thoughts after 1st quarter, Minnesota, Michigan

- Michigan's defense has not looked good against strong-armed quarterbacks this year, but there is a different element in this game. Minnesota QB Mitch Leidner isn't much of a downfield passer, but he is a very good runner. He's like a big tailback at QB, kind of a more limited version of Jordan Lynch of Northern Illinois, and Tim Tebow when he played at Florida. He presents a unique challenge

Friday, 4 October 2013

Scherzer, Benoit equal ALDS driver's seat for Detroit Tigers

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131005/caputo-scherzer-benoit-equal-alds-drivers-seat-for-tigers

Thoughts after 7 innings, Tigers, A's, Game 1 ALDS

- If the Tigers are protecting a one-run lead in the eighth, at some point they must consider using closer Joquin Benoit for more than an inning. He's certainly rested.
- If the Tigers lose this game, it will be every bit as much because of not taking an advantage of a vulnerable Bartolo Colon in the early innings as any pitching issues. Max Scherzer has pitched well by any standards tonight.
-

Thoughts after 6 innings, Tigers, A's ALDS Game 1

- Simply put, a horrible decision to send Victor Martinez home on Omar Infante's hit to right field. The ball was hit hard, Josh Reddick has a strong throwing arm and Victor Martinez is a painfully slow runner at this point of his career. There was only one out at that point. It wasn't a difficult play. It was simply the Tigers' running themselves out of potentially big inning.
- Oakland did an

Thoughts after 3 innings, Tigers, A's, Game 1 ALDS

- Two things need to happen to make this a lot easier for the Tigers. Either they get a big lead or Max Scherzer goes at least seven innings. If it is within three runs and Scherzer isn't on the mound through the seventh inning, it will be far too close for comfort given the Tigers' suspect bullpen. Scherzer's pitch count (49) is far above ideal after three innings.
- The Tigers were so

Detroit Tigers playing for their legacy this postseason

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131004/caputo-tigers-playing-for-legacy-this-postseason/1

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Lions need to follow the Packers blueprint

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20131002/pat-caputo-lions-need-to-follow-the-packers-blueprint

Monday, 30 September 2013

3 reasons the Tigers will win their ALDS vs. Oakland (and 3 reasons they will not)

On paper, I do believe the Tigers have a better overall team than Oakland, but the home field edge is probably an equalizer. So I look at the odds of the Tigers winning the series about 50-50. I expect it to be close, but wouldn't be surprised if it isn't one way or another. It's just the nature of postseason baseball. It's very unpredictable.
                          Three reasons the Tigers

Sunday, 29 September 2013

My thoughts on the Lions 40-32 victory over the Bears Sunday

Lions Show playoff potential in victory over Bears: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20130930/pat-caputo-lions-show-playoff-potential-in-win-over-bears My Column on Lions in aftermath of victory.

Thoughts after 3rd quarter Bears, LIons

- Each week, Nadamukong Suh seems to play better. He is doing what the best defensive linemen in the NFL are known for doing, imposing his will on this game. He is giving rookie Bears' guard Kyle Long fits. He has had a sack. Suh has forced a fumble. He has done a terrific job of rattling Chicago QB Jay Cutler, who has typically lost his composure under pressure.
- The Lions' offense can't sit on

Thoughts halftime Bears, Lions

- I don't know if that fumble at the end of the half by LIons' QB Matthew Stafford forced by the Bears' Julius Peppers should be hung on offensive tackle Riley Reiff. It looked Stafford held on to the ball too long. It's almost like he has gotten too comfortable in the pocket.
- Seldom has an offense fit a player in regard to player personnel better than the Lions' does for Reggie Bush. There is

Thoughts after 1st quarter Bears, Lions


- Terrific play by Lions' safety Louis Delmas on the interception. He was aggressive, but not too aggressive. The Lions are crowding the line of scrimmage and daring the Bears to throw the ball deep. Could be a good thing for the Lions, though, in it could lead to some sacks.
- Jay Cutler throws a beautiful pass with a tight spiral and good velocity. The degree of his ability to throw the

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Detroit Tigers manager Jim Leyland deserves more credit than he gets

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20130925/pat-caputo-jim-leyland-deserves-more-credit-than-he-gets 

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Riley Reiff, Ziggy Ansah turning draft day disappointment into game-winning delight

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20130924/pat-caputo-ansah-reiff-turning-draft-day-disappointment-into-game-winning-delight/1

The Detroit Tigers, Jim Leyland and his bullpen

Tigers manager Jim Leyland has long carried a reputation for being a master handling his bullpen. Of all the things strategic in nature, it's Leyland's biggest strength.
And it appears it will take all Leyland's skills in the postseason to carry the Tigers over the top.
In Monday's 4-3 loss at Minnesota, Leyland turned to a couple of the main ingredients he needs for the postseason.
It didn't

Sunday, 22 September 2013

Why it's no conicidence the Lions, finally, won at Washington

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20130922/caputo-its-no-coincidence-the-lions-have-finally-won-at-washington

Thoughts after 3rd quarter Lions, Redskins

- If the Lions' lose this game today, it will be even more disappointing than last week's at Arizona. The Redskins are as bad as advertised. The Lions definitely need to start winning these type of games on the road. If they can't, the playoffs will be a pipe dream. This is a very important final quarter which could set the tone for the entire season.
- The Lions had their dream play in third

Thoughts halftime Lions, Redskins

- The good news is the Lions forced another turnover during the second quarter on a Chris Houston interception. Not taking away the ball might have been their biggest weakness last year during a 4-12 season. The bad news is the Lions did not take advantage of the turnover. No points. The Redskins were like a tree about ready to fall at the time. They would have gone down fairly early in this game

Thoughts after 1st quarter Lions, Redskins

- What a horrible start for the Lions. A sack. A sputtering drive. A pick 6. Everything the Lions didn't need to start this game happened. Brutal. But the Lions did a nice job of responding to the adversity with a long scoring drive. It was a good work by backup running back Joique Bell. The kid is a player and taking full advantage of his opportunity with Reggie Bush out.
- Honestly, the

Saturday, 21 September 2013

My thoughts on Michigan's 24-21 victory over UConn Saturday night

MSU plays just well enough to lose to Notre Dame

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20130921/caputo-michigan-state-plays-well-enough-just-to-lose-to-notre-dame


Mark Dantonio: Time to regroup

Thoughts after 3rd quarter Michigan, UConn

- Shane Morris has gone from unassuming freshman quarterback biding his time to perhaps the most popular man in Ann Arbor. Seriously, I wouldn't make a QB change at Michigan. It would be ridiculous. I'd give Devin Gardner time to sort things out. But it's a good thing Michigan has a bye this coming week. It's also a good thing the Wolverines' first Big Ten game is a very winnable one at home vs.

Thoughts halftime Michigan, UConn

- What a disaster so far for Michigan. Honestly, UConn looks like the more poised of the two teams. And it is incredible the hapless Huskies have been able to move the ball this well, and have played this well overall, without wide receiver Shakim Phillips, who is out with a hamstring injury. He is easily the Huskies' best player. Who is that on? Wolverines' head coach Brady Hoke. His team wasn't

My thoughts on MSU's loss to Notre Dame Saturday

Thoughts after 3rd quarter MSU, Notre Dame

 - There are two ways of looking at Michigan State's scoring drive in the third quarter. One is was a long drive and the Spartans ran the ball effectively. Quarterback Connor Cook made a couple nice throws. Yet, it ate up more than half of the quarter and netted just three points. There just isn't much explosiveness to MSU's offense. However, the idea to win on the road, is to shorten the game

Thoughts halftime, MSU, Notre Dame

- The Spartans' defense is overrated from the stand point it is exceptionally stout until it really has to stop an opposing team. The first half of this game is a classic example. Notre Dame has many weapons, but the Fighting Irish offense was clearly perplexed. Then, at the end of the half, Notre Dame moved right down the field to take a 10-7 lead. It was kind of a snap shot of MSU's defense

Thoughts pregame MSU, Notre Dame

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Tigers are built for titles bigger than AL Central champions

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20130919/caputo-tigers-are-built-for-titles-bigger-than-al-central-champions


Bigger picture for Tigers involves more than division title

Monday, 16 September 2013

Jhonny Peralta a left fielder? Now that's an interesting concept. My thoughts on it

Prince Fielder having a bad season? Not really

Any discussion about Detroit Tigers' first baseman Prince Field
er begin with his $214 million contract, but shouldn't end there.
Statistically, this has been his worst year since he was a young player. A legitimate argument can be made he isn't living up to his contract this season. I do see some validity in it because Fielder has to be an off-the-chart hitter to live up to his salary. He has

Sunday, 15 September 2013

My thoughts on the Detroit Lions' 25-21 loss to the Arizona Cardinals Sunday

Typical Lions show up in Arizona: My column on Lions loss to Arizona: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20130915/pat-caputo-detroit-lions-turn-in-typical-dismal-performance-at-arizona


David Akers: What a disaster Sunday

Thoughts after 3rd quarter Lions, Cardinals

There is a long-established formula for success in football. Have a big play on offense. Score on defense. The Lions have followed that today. The one missing part of the equation is the special teams. The missed field goals and Micheal Spurlock's returns are a concern. If the Lions were doing a better job with field position today, this game might be over. Instead, it's very tight.
- You have to

Thoughts halftime Lions, Cardinals

- I haven't heard anybody complaining about Riley Reiff lately, have you? He looks like a pretty good NFL player to me. Larry Warford, too.
- Few quarterbacks can throw seams routes as well as Matthew Stafford. It is probably the biggest factor separating him from other QBs. That type of pattern he hit Calvin Johnson on for a long touchdown during the second quarter was completely taken away from

Thoughts after 1st quarter Lions, Cardinals

- Horrible example of field goal kicking by David Akers. It was a decent drive by the Lions considering they started at their own five. Anything under 50 yards should be a high percentage attempt for an NFL kicker. OK. So there is somewhat of a pass for a 52-yarder. But the second try less than 50? Come on. No excuse for that. As for the injury problem, Akers had them last season. The Lions were

Saturday, 14 September 2013

The most disturbing aspect of Michigan nearly being upset by Akron Saturday



Michigan more lucky than good in victory over Akron. My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20130914/caputo-michigan-shows-plenty-of-weakness-in-narrow-win-over-akron

Thoughts after 3rd quarter, Akron, Michigan

- You run the ball well, good things will happen. Fitzgerald Toussaint broke off a couple nice runs (although one was called back because of a penalty) and the seas parted for the Michigan offense. It wasn't a coincidence.
- We've heard a lot about Jehu Chesson, but we've seen remarkably little of him until his third quarter touchdown. It was an impressive catch and run. Freshman tight end Jake

Thoughts halftime Michigan, Akron

-  Sure, it's natural to letdown after the massive win over Notre Dame last week. But come on, Akron is awful.
- If Michigan doesn't turn the ball over, this game is the expected rout already. Devin Gardner's interceptions in the second quarter were especially disappointing. He has the makings of an outstanding quarterback, perhaps one of the best in the country, but not if he doesn't start

My thoughts on Michigan and MSU games today

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Time for the Detroit Lions to exorcise ghosts from season's past

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20130909/pat-caputo-time-for-lions-to-exorcise-ghosts-from-the-past


Suh, Lions: The road provides test

Sunday, 8 September 2013

Detroit Lions impressive in win over Vikings, but definitely leave room for improvement

My column:
http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20130908/caputo-lions-impressive-in-debut-but-can-still-get-better


Reggie Bush: Lions' debut worth shouting about

Thoughts atter 3rd quarter, Vikings, Lions

- Very impressive catch-and-run for a touchdown by Reggie Bush. Minnesota's safeties, particularly Harrison Smith, took poor angles in reaction to the pass. Bush saw a seam, and subsequently we saw his speed. He is one of the fastest backs in the NFL. If anything, his pure speed has been underrated. The Lions have done a good job of putting Bush in position to take full advantage of it. Now, part

Thoughts at halftime Vkings, Lions


The Lions are fortunate they are trailing by just a point. There is this "what if" quality about the Lions that is maddening. What if Sam Martin didn't fumble the snap from center? What if Calvin Johnson had actually hung on for a TD? What if Ndamukong Suh didn't try to throw a chop block on DeAndre Levy's interception return? What if Matthew Stafford's pass hadn't been tipped before being

Thoughts at the end of 1st quarter Vikings, Lions

- This game couldn't have started out any worse for the Lions. A promising Detroit drive stalling? A field goal snap fumbled by a rookie punter serving as holder? Vikings' All-Pro running back and longtime Lions' nemesis Adrian Peterson breaking off a 78-yard touchdown run? I understand a lot of Lions' fans began mumbling under their breath, or perhaps even screaming, "Same old Lions." I couldn't

No excuses left for Detroit LIons and head coach Jim Schwartz

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20130906/caputo-no-excuses-left-for-the-lions-and-coach-jim-Schwartz


Jim Schwartz: Seat couldn't be hotter

Impressive win over Notre Dame just the start for promising Michigan

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20130908/caputo-michigan-shows-a-lot-of-promise-in-win-over-notre-dame


Devin Gardner: Getting it done

Saturday, 7 September 2013

Thoughts after 3rd quarter Notre Dame, Michigan

- It wasn't long ago Jeremy Gallon seemed undersized and underwhelming, but it wouldn't surprise me if he is an All-Big Ten receiver. He had a big game against ND two years ago, but this is turning into one for the ages. He has really taken off since Devin Gardner became Michigan's primary QB.
- These are two well-drilled football teams. It's been an impressive game so far considering it is early

Thoughts at halftime Notre Dame, Michigan

- Devin Gardner looks exceptionally under control tonight, that's for sure. He is an outstanding scrambler, who runs with a great sense of purpose, rather than flash. His first-down completion in the face of pass rush to Jeremy Gallon for a first down midway through the second quarter was particularly impressive. But Michigan needs more production from its running backs to ease the load on him.

Thoughts after 1st quarter Notre Dame, Michigan

- The Wolverines' receivers have been excellent tonight, especially Jeremy Gallon. He has been quite a nemesis for Notre Dame, considering his long catch-and-run for a touchdown in the first quarter tonight, along with the way he stuck a dagger in ND's collective heart, along with Denard Robinson, in '11.
- Michigan was smart to loosen Notre Dame's defense with a couple early reverses, getting

The 15 greatest players in the history of the Detroit Lions

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20130906/caputo-the-15-greatest-players-in-lions-histroy



Little doubt Barry Sanders sits atop Lions' all-time list

Thursday, 5 September 2013

It's eye-opening how vulnerable Detroit Tigers might be in the playoffs

Is there reason to panic about the Tigers? No. But it would be naïve to believe the Tigers' recent struggles against playoff-caliber teams Oakland and Boston weren't telling. I'd still list the Tigers as the favorite to reach the World Series out of the American League, but it's hardly a given. That will be especially true if they aren't able to gain home field advantage. Boston and Detroit are

Why the Minnesota Vikings provide the perfect litmus test fort he Detroit Lions in NFL season opener

My column: http://www.theoaklandpress.com/sports/20130904/caputo-lions-face-crucial-opener-against-division-rival-vikings


Lions need an early lead vs. Peterson, Vikings

Replay of our live chat this week on Michigan, MSU after season openers, Lions' upcoming opener and Tigers' issues. We do this every Monday 1 p.m. You participation is easy and encouraged.


Saturday, 31 August 2013

Bigger, faster, stronger, tougher - Michigan Wolverines just look better

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/08/31/sports/doc522290764aace154849666.txt


Hoke, Gardner: Impressive '13 debut

Thoughts halftime Central Michigan, Michigan

- I think it is a very fair and accurate point to make that Michigan has been much more impressive today than Michigan State was last night.
- If this game gets out of hand and turns into a rout for Michigan, it will still be quite interesting, depending on how Wolverines' coach Brady Hoke substitutes. Who doesn't want to see freshmen Derrick Green or Shane Morris play today? One is a 5-star

Thoughts after 1st quarter, Central Michigan, Michigan

- Devin Gardner made two brilliant plays on the Wolverines' first offensive scoring drive which displayed why he might be a special QB. He didn't panic while scrambling in the backfield, keeping his eyes down the field and finding Drew Dileo for a huge game. Then, he followed his blockers brilliantly while picking his way through the Central Michigan defense on a remarkably easy touchdown run.
-

Friday, 30 August 2013

MSU Spartans giving a new meaning to offensive football

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/08/31/sports/doc52218570724b7521539521.txt


Thoughts halftime, Western Michigan, Michigan State

- I know this: If MSU coach Mark Dantonio did put true freshman QB Damion Terry into the game, which the crowd at Spartan Stadium has been chanting for, there couldn't be any drop off from Connor Cook and Andrew Maxwell. They have been underwhelming, to say the least. But like last season, it's difficult to tell if their ineffectiveness is because they are playing poorly or just the overall

Thoughts Western Michigan, Michigan State at lightning delay

- Rain or not, Andrew Maxwell or Connor Cook at QB, MSU's offense continues to look completely out of sync. The new offensive coordinators have not made much difference. This looks like a replay of 2012 offensively so far tonight for the Spartans.
- Western Michigan's offense has been just as ineffective. Added in with the rain, the first half  was an ugly display of football.
- The Spartans'

Thoughts after 1 quarter, MSU, Western Michigan

MSU free safety Kurtis Drummond has played like an All-American in the first quarter of this game. That was a Charles Woodson-like interception. He's made three big plays.
- The Spartans' defense has been extremely aggressive. They mostly have had nine defenders in the box, daring Western Michigan QB Tyler Van Tubbergen to throw deep, which is going to be difficult with MSU's pass rush and lack

Thursday, 29 August 2013

Victor Martinez, Torii Hunter - why they are so essential to the Detroit Tigers

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/08/29/sports/doc521fcb19e4932805812095.txt


Martinez (left), Hunter: True value could come in playoffs

Why today is such a key start for Max Scherzer, Detroit Tigers

After beating up on mostly floundering, non-contending teams, the Tigers have gotten a bit of a reality check from the potentially playoff-bound Oakland A's this week. Their vaunted starting pitching rotation has been hammered in the first three games of the series.
Enter, for the series finale today, Max Scherzer, whose 19-1 record has been questioned because he has benefitted from getting more

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Perhaps, for a change, Michigan will surprise rather than disappoint in '13

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/08/28/sports/doc521d8e3f2c248235657071.txt


Brady Hoke: Has Wolverines headed in right direction

Monday, 26 August 2013

Phil Coke, Jhonny Peralta, Detroit Tigers - what to do in the postseason?

The most underrated aspect about the Tigers is how much change there actually has been since they were swept in the World Series by the Giants.
Quintin Berry, Avisail Garcia, Jhonny Peralta and Delmon Young all started World Series games. Phil Coke was the Tigers' closer.



Phil Coke: Worth a playoff roster spot or should Tigers move on?

Berry was cut in spring training and is no longer in the

Saturday, 24 August 2013

Detroit Lions remain a mystery with NFL season fast approaching

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/08/24/sports/doc521983e50116d087669359.txt


Reggie Bush: Obvious bright spot

Thursday, 22 August 2013

Thoughts at halftime, Lions, Patriots

- A lot of people might look at Willie Young's development into a decent player and think the Lions can't afford to lose him. I saw what he did tonight, after what he did last week vs. the Browns, and think maybe the Lions can't afford to keep him. That's the problem right there. There was no reason for him to touch Tom Brady or put his finger in his face or do anything other than foolishness.

Thoughts after 1st quarter, Lions, Patriots

- Mistakes just kill the Lions don't they? Unreal.
- Creating turnovers doesn't happen by accident. Those were big plays and a good sign. Nice hit by DeAndre Levy. He is an underrated player, in my opinion.
- The short FG miss by David Akers was bad, and he's going to hear about it, and they will come in the form for cries for Kickalious, Havard Rugland.
- Reggie Bush may finally have found the

Good isn't enough when great is expected from Justin Verlander

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/08/22/sports/doc521695c2d1643209280843.txt


Justin Verlander: Could be No.3 in playoffs

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

MSU Spartans football at a crossroad under Mark Dantonio

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/08/20/sports/doc5213965cc7762104482079.txt


Mark Dantonio: What now?

Monday, 19 August 2013

PED history, the so-called "steroids era" and how Miguel Cabrera's huge season are unfortunately tied

Perspective about how the so-called "steroids" era has skewed baseball comes with this truly outstanding season that is being put together by the Tigers' Miguel Cabrera.
It's a season whose magnitude will not be appreciated as much as it should because of what transpired in baseball during the late 1990s and early 2000s when the numbers were artificially enhanced.


Cabrera: Stats even more

Thursday, 15 August 2013

Thoughts halftime Lions, Browns

- Nate Burleson is a fan favorite because he is a genuinely good guy, and has long been a good NFL playes, but tonight has not been a good one for him. He has had no separation and he dropped a first down pass.
- David Akers, on grass, nailed a 48-yard field goal with no issue. The competition between him and Havard Rugland, aka "Kickalious" isn't even close, despite all the chatter about it.
-

Thoughts first quarter, Lions at Browns

- Horrible first quarter by the Lions.
- Sam Martin did not do well maintaining his consistency from last week. Poor punts the first few. And the Lions were fortunate a TD was called back because of penalty. Martin outkicked the coverage.
- Reggie Bush is an obvious bright spot. He is a terrific talent. That much was obvious on a play in space again tonight.
- Don Carey is not a starting NFL

Preseason Game 2, Detroit Lions, Cleveland Browns - what to look for



Sam Martin: Impressive - so far

- Lions' fans are enamored with Havard Rugland, aka "Kickalious". Like you, I will be sitting on the edge of my seat tonight when he gets another chance, likely in the second half. It will be a stronger test, on grass and outside, in Cleveland. But I still see no circumstance where he is the Lions' kicker to start the season - even if David Akers gets hurt or

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

mausimomslieblingsblogs

mausimomslieblingsblogs

Kansas City Royals, Detroit Tigers - examining the "threat"

While it appears the Tigers devastated the Indians with a four-game sweep in Cleveland last weekend, the Kansas City Royals have emerged as a threat. Of course, "threat" is a relative term.
The Royals, their 1-0 loss at Miami Tuesday night aside, have been winning a lot of games.  The Royals were 8-20 in May and apparently done. They are 39-21 since June 4 and decided against being sellers at the

Friday, 9 August 2013

Thoughts halftime, Lions, Jets, preseason Game 1

- Riley Reiff did a very poor job of pass blocking on Jets' linebacker Quinton Coples, The result was an inexcusable sack. If he doesn't step that up, the Lions are in serious trouble.
- Matt Willis is an older receiver with just one NFL TD, but he sure didn't hurt his cause for making the team with two excellent catches on the Lions second quarter scoring drive. He had been with Denver for

Thoughts after 1st quarter, Lions, Jets preseason Game 1

I don't think it is a fluke Ziggy Ansah made a big play in his first preseason game with the Lions. He is athletic. He is tall. Their defensive line is imposing even by NFL standards. He is part of it. Ansah did the same type of things during the Senior Bowl workouts and during the game. Ansah is not just a terrific athlete, he has excellent instincts for the game. Too much has been made of his

Thursday, 8 August 2013

Thoughts on Detroit Tigers after first three games at Cleveland

- I am convinced the radar gun in Cleveland is not accurate. It has clearly been reading several miles per hour higher than the one at Comerica Park, and in other major league ball parks. Not that Justin Verlander didn't pitch well Tuesday. He did, but it was his command of the baseball, not his velocity that was the difference. He has been throwing that hard much of the season, and has had

Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Better "talent" needs to mean better "team" for Detroit Pistons

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/08/07/sports/doc52032579352e7513621048.txt


 Brandon Jennings: Great talent or great player?

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

On the passing of Shawn Burr







Shawn Burr: A big part of the Red Wings' success story


The Red
Wings have been an incredibly successful franchise for more than two decades. But their
turnaround in the late 1980s and early 1990s didn’t happen by accident nor overnight. The
Steve Yzerman draft pick in 1983 was the most significant move. There were others,
though. One was Shawn Burr being taken in the first round with the

Monday, 5 August 2013

MLB suspensions of Jhonny Peralta, A-Rod, others not too little, but way too late

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/08/05/sports/doc52004936e8cc7746522857.txt


Jhonny Peralta: MLB suspension fits

Sunday, 4 August 2013

Likely MLB suspension of Jhonny Peralta not only challenge facing Detroit Tigers

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/08/04/sports/doc51fedafb0db23360636153.txt


Prince Fielder, Tigers face a challenge in Cleveland this week

Saturday, 3 August 2013

A-Rod, MLB suspensions not only warranted, but long overdue

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/08/03/sports/doc51fda0d6e966d322274403.txt


A-Rod: The sky is falling

Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Probable MLB suspension of Jhonny Peralta more a blip than a disaster for Detroit Tigers

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/07/31/sports/doc51f98964abfce677858809.txt


Jhonny Peralta: Tigers can overcome his projected absence

My thoughts on the Detroit Tigers' trade...

The three-way deal, from the Tigers' standpoint, is essentially Avisail Garcia for Jose Iglesias. In regard to prospects, it's essentially a wash at this point. Garcia is an impressive athlete with good speed, throwing arm and ability to put the bat on the ball. At this stage, however, he has yet to develop the ability to pull a good major league fastball with any sort of consistently. It limits

Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Brady Hoke rapidly building Michigan into a national championship contender with recruiting

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/07/29/sports/doc51f6ed1048106418915342.txt


Brady Hoke: Getting it done on the recruiting trail

Monday, 29 July 2013

MLB trade deadline deal for Jose Veras fits Detroit Tigers perfectly - despite steep price

If you are expecting Mariano Rivera when Jose Veras joins the Tigers, you are going to be disappointed. There is nothing about him that suggests he is a "light's out" closer.
In fact, the way to go may be to keep Joaquin Benoit in the closer's role for awhile.
But Veras does make the Tigers' bullpen considerably better, giving manager Jim Leyland another viable option with either role in late

Sunday, 28 July 2013

Why Detroit Tigers must be active at MLB trade deadline

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/07/28/sports/doc51f5a6295ffbe077556079.txt


Jim Leyland: Could use help at trade deadline

Saturday, 20 July 2013

Detroit LIons, Reggie Bush, NFL training camp starts and those under a spotlight

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/07/20/sports/doc51eb5e5caa607132255144.txt

Reggie Bush: Lions need him to be great


Thursday, 18 July 2013

5 questions as MLB returns from All Star Game

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/07/19/sports/doc51e867b85b457103106863.txt


Jason Grilli: Dealin'

Keys for the Detroit Tigers moving forward after All Star Game

- The schedule definitely favors the Tigers. They have no West Coast trips remaining, for example. But there are a couple traps. One comes right out of the break, when they travel to Kansas City and Chicago in back-to-back trips. The Tigers have not played particularly well in either place in recent years, and they are a combined 3-5 record against the White Sox Royals this season - although both

Part 3 of My series "The Mystery of Putting" Perhaps the biggest factor of all

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/07/18/sports/doc51e76a7c8bd29481638732.txt


At British Open, biggest question: Which way will it break?

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

If MLB suspends Jhonny Peralta of Detroit Tigers, it shouldn't be until next season

Let us start this out with an "if."
If Tigers' shortstop Jhonny Peralta is deemed by Major League Baseball to have violated its drug policy and is suspended, which has been widely reported as a possibility, it should not be until next season.
You won't find anybody less sympathetic with baseball's PED cheaters than I am, but the appeal process in this case must be comprehensive. Why? Because

Part 2 of my series "The Mystery of Putting" The oddity of anchor putting

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/07/17/sports/doc51e6214fa995c558838465.txt


Adam Scott: Won't putt like this in 2016

Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Part 1 of my series "The Mystery of Putting" Why putting is an art more than a science

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/07/16/sports/doc51e4855a73429339227630.txt


Ben Hogan: Classic example of how putting comes and goes

Monday, 15 July 2013

The mystery of putting

I have a three-part series "The mystery of Putting" that will be appearing in the print editions of The Oakland Press Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday of this week. The series will be posted online as well at theoaklandpress.com.
Part 1 of the series will discuss the unpredictability of putting, Part 2 will be about the controversy and impending ban on anchor putting and Part 3 will be on greens,

Sunday, 14 July 2013

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/07/14/sports/doc51e31e828f485663556785.txt


Jhonny Peralta: Will he be suspended?

Thursday, 11 July 2013

Self-made distractions could hurt Detroit Tigers

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/07/11/sports/doc51df39ea81b3e738698837.txt


Jim Leyland: Overreaction to say the least

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions, contract extension - a win-win, win-win situation all around

When last season fell apart on the Lions, many fingers of blame were pointed at quarterback Matthew Stafford.


Matthew Stafford: Part of the solution, not the problem

It's a natural reaction. Stafford is the QB. It is the most pressure-packed position in team sports. But the Lions' issues became so deep, even an immensely talented QB such as Stafford couldn't correct them. It would have been

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Detroit Pistons are better with Josh Smith, but how much better, really?

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/07/09/sports/doc51dc3e785bf42325128690.txt


Josh Smith: Great talent or great player?

Monday, 8 July 2013

If the Detroit Tigers have an edge, it could be a traditional rival

Until Sunday's loss to the Indians, anyway, a week went well for the Tigers. Their left-handed hitters, who had been struggling mightily, woke up. Alex Avila, Victor Martinez and Andy Dirks all contributed significantly to the Tigers winning five of six games at Toronto and Cleveland. The much-maligned bullpen was pretty good. Justin Verlander and Rick Porcello both turned in strong starts. Even

Trout, Harper, Machado, Puig, Segura, Sabermetrics - why MLB is better than ever

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/07/08/sports/doc51d9d27439e49648170976.txt




Puig: Definitely belongs in All Star Game

Sunday, 7 July 2013

NHL free agency cements still lofty status for Detroit Red Wings

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/07/07/sports/doc51d95f2ada4da406900100.txt



Alfredsson: Motivated


Wednesday, 3 July 2013

How the Detroit Red Wings can use NHL free agency to make a Stanley Cup run

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/07/04/sports/doc51d5088a261d1581780215.txt


David Clarkson: Fits Red Wings

Jim Leyland caused Rick Porcello suspension and Detroit Tigers could pay severe price

As much as I appreciate Tigers manager Jim Leyland giving a straight answer to a straight question, sometimes discretion is the better part of valor.
When he essentially announced to writers Saturday there was going to be payback for a high-and-tight pitch from Tampa Bay's Fernando Rodney to Detroit star slugger Miguel Cabrera, it setup a scenario where Major League Baseball had no choice but to

Where Calvin Johnson of the Detroit LIons should rank among Top 10 NFL players

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/07/03/sports/doc51d3a9019034c048938990.txt

Sunday, 30 June 2013

Reality sets in Detroit Tigers aren't as good as advertised

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/07/01/sports/doc51d10c00dbe2b144876574.txt


Jim Leyland, Tigers: Trying to figure it out

Saturday, 29 June 2013

Detroit Pistons, NBA Draft, Joe Dumars and defending the seemingly indefensible

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/06/29/sports/doc51cf6a813e7c3775435509.txt


Joe Dumars and Pistons' draft class: Controversy rules

Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Red Wings need Damien Brunner, but at what cost?

Hockey is a multi-dimensional game. It's not a one-way street. Yet, as defensive systems have become an applied science and goaltending improved to the point astounding skill, goal scorers have become a premium.


Damien Brunner: Goal scorer

Damien Brunner reminded nobody of Brett Hull in his prime as a 27-year-old rookie for the Red Wings last season, but he has the knack for scoring goals. He

Detroit Pistons must be on target in this weak NBA Draft

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/06/26/sports/columns/doc51cb205d6f711792023568.txt


Joe Dumars: Key off season begins with NBA Draft Thursday

Perception of Michigan and Michigan State football is slipping

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/06/23/sports/doc51c72d5b6a6bc306959225.txt


Dantonio, Hoke: Teams lower rated in '13

Sunday, 23 June 2013

Incompetent umpires best friends to Justin Verlander, Detroit Tigers Sunday

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/06/23/sports/doc51c77bca225fa254925747.txt


Good for the Tigers, bad for the Red Sox and baseball

Thursday, 20 June 2013

My thoughts on the proposed new arena for the Red Wings in Detroit

- While the arena is badly needed, and long overdue, it'd be naïve to believe Joe Louis Arena will not be missed. The memories there, which include four Stanley Cup championships, will long be treasured and Joe Louis Arena part of their lore. The building lacks restrooms, the corridors are far too narrow, the suites inadequate, the design about as up-to-date a 1970s Chevy Vega and it is downright

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Issues for Detroit Tigers are deeper than Jose Valverde

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/06/19/sports/doc51c22822e0804115614470.txt


Jose Valverde: How much longer will he be a Tiger?

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

On Pavel Datsyuk contract extension with Red Wings



Pavel Datsyuk: Consummate two-way player

There is nothing Pavel Datsyuk can’t do on a sheet of ice. He is strong his skates, possesses a great shot and is a terrific passer. I’ve heard his speed knocked at times. I find the criticism to be without merit. It’s not like he is slow. He is not a fighter per say, but he does body check consistently with force. And the one time he did fight, he won

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Friday, 14 June 2013

Why the numbers just don't add up for Joaquin Benoit as Detroit Tigers' long-term closer

With Jose Valverde back in meltdown mode, the Tigers very well could turn to Joaquin Benoit as closer. But that would likely only provide a short-term solution and cause long-tern problems.


Joaquin Benoit: Premier setup man, but no closer

Benoit is one of the best setup relievers in baseball, ranking in the top eight in Major League Baseball in holds each of the last three seasons.
It's not

Thursday, 13 June 2013

Why not Bruce Rondon as current Detroit Tigers' closer? These are the reasons

While he struggled during spring training and during a brief stint with the Tigers earlier this season, Bruce Rondon has put up impressive numbers for Triple-A Toledo. His ERA is 0.77. Opposing hitters are batting just .118 against him. He has struck out 29 in 23 innings. He has 10 saves.
But Rondon still has command problems. June 5, he walked four in two thirds of an inning at Columbus. The

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Are the Detroit Lions better? You be the judge based on these mini camp observations

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/06/11/sports/doc51b7c238243df363887194.txt

Jim Schwartz: Impressed with Ziggy Ansah

And to the head of the list as potential Detroit Tigers' closer goes...K-Rod

Even as the Tigers open up a lead in the sorry American League Central, the elephant in the room continues to be their bullpen, especially closer.
The wheels, not unexpectedly, have started to come off Jose Valverde at closer. Although he experienced some early success upon his return to the major leagues, it's proving to be fleeting. His last few outings haven't been as effective (except for a 1

Sunday, 9 June 2013

Detroit Lions, Matthew Stafford and whether great statistics will lead to a Super Bowl victory some day

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/06/09/sports/doc51b472841d8de653763985.txt

Stafford: QBs ultimately judged by winning

Thursday, 6 June 2013

Far more right than wrong with the Detroit Tigers

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/06/06/sports/doc51b107ce50442097611505.txt


Big home run for Victor Martinez (right) Thursday

Tuesday, 4 June 2013

What has been missing from the Detroit Lions? My answer

The first of the preseason football magazines are out. Even in the digital age, I still have an odd fascination with them. I buy most every one I see. and especially look forward to the release of the Phil Steele college football edition.
An item in the Lindy's Pro Football magazine did catch my eye. It was a comment from Howard Balzer, who has covered the NFL for a long time. The magazine is

Monday, 3 June 2013

On Tigers' bullpen woes, Red Wings' season and Lions' schedule...

Replay of our weekly chat. We do this every week at Monday at 1 p.m. You are welcome to join in live.

Sunday, 2 June 2013

No way the Tigers can win the World Series with this bullpen

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/06/02/sports/doc51abd4bac3732437517621.txt

Jose Valverde: Early success misleading

Saturday, 1 June 2013

Red Wings thrived during transition season

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/06/01/sports/doc51aaa97d287ce262405682.txt


Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Ultimately, Detroit Red Wings were more thrilling than disappointing

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/05/29/sports/doc51a6cc3830c73764388358.txt


Jimmy Howard and Red Wings made a terrific run

Is the Detroit Tigers' Big Four really a Big 5?

It's difficult to dispute the Tigers have the best starting pitching rotation in baseball. Justin Verlander is arguably the best starter of his generation. Max Scherzer is an enormous and emerging talent. Doug Fister has been a wonder since the Tigers' traded for him in 2011, developing a tremendous breaking ball and a swing-back fastball, which has become his trademark. Anibal Sanchez,

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Monday, 27 May 2013

Detroit Red Wings only have themselves to blame for letting Blackhawks back in

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/05/27/sports/doc51a423dd277bf908313110.txt

Even Jimmy Howard couldn't save Red Wings in Game 6

Saturday, 25 May 2013

Detroit Red Wings get expected dose of reality from Blackhawks

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/05/25/sports/doc51a1909510f0c120705241.txt


Toews, Howard: Game 6 Monday should be epic

Detroit Lions, NFL Draft, Martin Mayhew, Jim Schwartz - what it reveals

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/05/25/sports/doc51a0ae8538e9f022782690.txt

Matthew Stafford: Terrific draft pick

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Detroit Red Wings prove to Blackhawks, again, why they are legitimate Stanley Cup contender

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/05/23/sports/doc519edcccdb59a927076379.txt




Howard has stymied Toews, Blackhawks

Myths about Justin Verlander and his recent struggles



Justin Verlander: Odds strong he'll figure it out

MYTH - Verlander has never been through this before: This is not an unusually bad start for Verlander. Even in his best season, 2011, when he was the American League MVP and Cy Young Award winner, he was 4-3 with a 3.42 ERA after 11 starts. This season, he is a 5-4 with a 3.66 ERA after 10 starts.
MYTH - Verlander is not healthy and is hiding

Why Detroit Red Wings playoff run is hardly a coincidence

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/05/23/sports/doc519d55db2177f475460253.txt



Young Red Wings have come together in a hurry


Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Michigan, MSU hold key to Detroit's bowl success

I have always maintained that when given a choice, Michigan and Michigan State should play in the Little Caesars Bowl at Ford Field. It'd be great for the local economy. It would go from lukewarm media coverage to intense media coverage locally. Obviously, ticket sales would grow.
However, in truth, both have avoided the bowl like the plaque. There is a stigma attached to it.
It's when one of the

Detroit Red Wings, momentum arm-in-arm in dismantling of Blackhawks

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/05/21/sports/doc519ae52478517072484813.txt


Drew Miller, Jimmy Howard and Red Wings rolling

Monday, 20 May 2013

Why are the Detroit Tigers suddenly losing? Two reasons



Verlander: Figuring  it out

- They are missing Austin Jackson. He not only keys the top of their batting order, but is the Tigers' best defender at a premier position, center field. Last season in May and early June, Jackson went on the disabled list, as well. The Tigers were 8-13 in the games he missed. In 2012 overall, the Tigers were 80-57 when Jackson played. When he didn't, they were 8-17

Sunday, 19 May 2013

Detroit Red Wings prove crest on sweater can mean everything

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/05/19/sports/doc519970d001be9741924723.txt

Henrik Zetterberg: Has gained greatness as Red Wings captain

Saturday, 18 May 2013

Red Wings show why they are legitimate Stanley Cup contenders

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/05/18/sports/doc5197f14e44fbc499391447.txt

Red Wings: Saturday win reason to believe

Friday, 17 May 2013

Questions Red Wings must answer in Game 2 vs Blackhawks

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/05/17/sports/doc51966610dc6d6608790659.txt


Thursday, 16 May 2013

No disasters, but Detroit Tigers still have their issues

Sparky Anderson's 40-game mark legacy will live in infamy in Detroit sports lore. I kind of laugh about it having been around him daily the last 10 years he was the Tigers' manager. That's because it was no more than a deflector away from the way the Tigers performed during the opening weeks of a given season.


Austin Jackson: Missed

When the 40-game mark would actually arrive, Sparky would

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

It'd be naive to believe Detroit Tigers don't still have issues at closer

Maybe it's because the Tigers appear to be such a good club overall. Or perhaps it's because their competition in the A.L. Central is underwhelming.
But the Tigers have a glaring weakness. It's at closer. What will they eventually do?


Tigers living on borrowed time with Valverde at closer

Jose Valverde is a stop-gap measure at this point. I don't believe that based on one blown save, but

Monday, 13 May 2013

Thursday, 9 May 2013

On Oakland University joining the Horizon League

I viewed the Summit League as NCAA Division I's version of plankton. It's definitely at the bottom of the food chain. As long as Oakland University was in that conference, it's cache as a legitimate Division I college athletic program was going to be limited. Joining the Horizon League makes the ceiling higher, and the fit is much better geographically. That's across the board - in all sports.


Red Wings inconsistency is maddening

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/05/09/sports/doc518b4910ab7cb061708771.txt

The End wasn't pretty Wednesday

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Detroit Red Wings show relentless hockey is back in town

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/05/07/sports/doc51887f672d573195192191.txt


Brunner: Goal ended a terrific playoff game

Saturday, 4 May 2013

Own mistakes, not a bad call, why Red Wings trail Ducks

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/05/04/sports/doc5185dbc537c51724131711.txt

Justin Abdelkader: Hit was not only Red Wings' miscue

Detroit Lions will be different in '13, but are they better?

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/05/04/sports/doc51857061db12f208959963.txt

Reggie Bush: Should fit Lions

Friday, 3 May 2013

Red Wings forgotten two turn Anaheim series on its ear

My column: http://theoaklandpress.com/articles/2013/05/03/sports/doc51837987f3e23174672791.txt


Thursday, 2 May 2013

On the Detroit Tigers bullpen...

No spot in baseball is more a wild card than bullpen closer. Former Tiger Jason Grilli, now 36, is leading the major leagues in saves with the Pittsburgh Pirates. As recently as 2011, he was hanging on in baseball by a thread in the minors with the Philadelphia Phillies' organization (he was released that July and signed the next day with Pirates). For most of his major league career, Grilli's

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Monday, 29 April 2013

On Jason Collins coming out, Lions and NFL Draft, Red Wings playoffs, Tigers

This is a replay of my weekly live chat. Would love to have you participate when we do it live each Monday at 1.