Normally I try to write one article a week, but this match up has me as giddy as a teenage girl on her way to the Justin Beiber show. First off both pitchers are coming off of supremely dominant outings their last two trips to the mound. Around here, we all know what Josh Beckett has done, but do we really know what Tigers ace Justin Verlander has done? If not let me shed a little insight for you.
Verlander is coming off of what was two of the most dominant outings for a pitcher... EVER! Throwing a no hitter against the Blue Jays on May 7th and didn't allow another hit until May 13th against Kansas City in the fifth inning. Some fans will scoff at that say "Toronto and Kansas City? I could go in and do that against those teams.". You would be wrong. Toronto boasts whose arguably the games best hitter in Jose Bautista. Kansas City has a very good hitter in Billy Butler as well. Long story short, those guys aren't slouches.
"Well Mike, what about Beckett?" Well, Beckett has also come to form shutting out both the Twins on May 9th, and the Yankees on May 14th. He's doing it by being vintage Josh Beckett. You know, the Beckett Red Sox fans climbed on his back for as he lead the pitching staff in 2007. He's back to making opposing hitters look anemic.
Neither pitcher has an easy task tonight when it comes to opposing offenses. Verlander will have to face Adrian Gonzalez, who's been swinging the hottest bat on the team, Kevin Youkilis, who's been heating up, Dustin Pedroia, who's continuing his laser show, and David Ortiz, who's shown that he's still a force to be reckoned with. Detroit comes in with two of the most prolific hitters in the game right now. Miguel Cabrera and old friend Victor Martinez. Cabrera has been a monster this season, with a batting average of .302, 7 homers, and 28 RBI. While Martinez coming off the DL on May 4th has hit 4 homers, 23 RBI's, and is sitting on a batting average of .317. These guys came to play.
If there was a night to skip playoff hockey in Boston, tonight is definately the night to do so without any regret.