The Detroit Tigers can be excused for feeling pretty good about themselves right now.
After all, following a nine game slide, they’ve won seven of nine, including most recently sweeping their divisional rivals the Minnesota Twins at Comerica Park over the weekend. They’re right back in the swing of things with a .500 record, and also decided to hold on to 2B Jonathan Schoop after speculation that he could be a trade chip.
We’ve seen the ups and the downs of this shortened 60 game season – but as far as manager Ron Gardenhire is concerned, his team has as fair a shot as any team to make some noise.
“I’ve been saying that and people laughed at me,” Gardenhire said of his team being a playoff contender. “Now everybody wants to talk about it. But I’ve said it the whole time. Anything can happen in this short season. And there’s a lot of openings in this thing.
“As long as we keep playing like we have, we have a shot.”
And speaking of Schoop, he blasted his 8th home run of the year Sunday, helping to solidify his place in the team’s plans for at least the remainder of the season.
“We’ve got some people doing some pretty good things on offense,” Gardenhire said. “That’s what it takes to win, you’ve got to have multiple people doing some things right.”
It’s certainly easier to be loose and have fun when things are going well, and it’s certainly been a load off of the team’s collective backs to get out of that nine game losing streak.
The feeling of success is a great one, and the Tigers are chasing it.
“The level of fun has risen and we’re not grinding as much as we were going through that losing streak,” Gardenhire said. “Everyone is a little more relaxed. Everyone feels it when they get to the ballpark. It’s, ‘How are we going to win today?’
“That’s the feeling you have to have to be successful in this league.”
– – Quotes via Chris McKoskey of The Detroit News Link – –