Pay no attention to the math. Sure the 2013 Detroit Tigers have played more than half their scheduled 162 games, but the All Star break is the symbolic mid season point, and the next two weeks will take us to the 2013 MLB trading deadline and things will get interesting. For now we look back on the 94 games this team has played already.
The Tigers are 52-42 and are in first place in their division by 1.5 games. However, that record alone does not tell the story of a first place team that seems to be under performing. 52 wins is the second worst win total of the six teams that currently lead their division and when we look at the splits it paints a far more accurate picture of a team that may something short of great.
Through May and June of 2013 the Tigers went just 28-27. While they are 20-13 against the teams in their division so far they have many games left with the Chicago White Sox and the Kansas City Royals and those games are far from assured wins. The Tigers are 28-23 against teams with a winning record and 22-19 against teams with a losing record. The only split that gives them a clear advantage is their record at home where they are 29-19. On the road they 23-23, and as presently constructed they look unable to win the road playoffs games that this kind of record will force them into once the playoffs arrive.
This team has one of the most feared lineups and starting rotations in all of baseball and yet they continue to come up short, especially in the eyes of their fans. The Tigers are first in the American League in hits and second in runs scored. They are first in team batting average, have the third most walks and the third fewest strikeouts, and are fifth in home uns. Yet they rank last in stolen bases and that seems to be a key piece of their game that is missing.
The pitching staff is pretty good with the sixth best ERA and they have mowed down the most batters in their league. They have also given up the fewest home runs. They also have the second fewest saves which speaks to problems in the bullpen.