Detroit Tigers: Top To Bottom, Starting Rotation Is Best In MLB

By Connor Muldowney
Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

When you think of the Detroit Tigers, you think of their great hitting, right? Well of course you do, they have one of the best lineups in the MLB and rank in the top five of each major batting category. However, when you think of pitching, is it the same type of dominance?

Well, it’s about time you give the Tigers’ pitching staff some credit. They have what has turned into the best starting rotation in baseball.

Sure, it’s hard not to talk about their hitting when you’ve got Miguel Cabrera hitting over .360 with nearly 70 RBIs and 17 home runs. Oh, and let’s not forget Prince Fielder hitting nearly .300 with a modest 12 home runs and nearly 50 RBIs. However, this staff has what almost seems like three or four aces.

Rick Porcello is not one of the guys I’d consider an ace, but he’s slowly but surely improving. His ERA is elevated because of one rough start against the Los Angeles Angels in which he gave up 10 runs. He’s sitting at 2-3 with a mediocre 5.21 ERA, but he has shown flashes of being that solid fifth starter the Tigers need.

Justin Verlander, the ace of the staff, other starters that could potentially be aces on other teams are Doug Fister, Anibal Sanchez, and Max Scherzer.

Sanchez has been the surprise of the staff, posting a rotation-best 2.65 ERA with a 6-5 record and 98 strikeouts. Oh, and let’s not forget his 17 strikeout game and near no-hitter earlier this season. Close behind him in the strikeout and ERA category, Scherzer has dropped his ERA considerably since the beginning of the season. He now boasts an astonishing 8-0 record with a 3.24 ERA and 100 strikeouts.

The other two guys aren’t so bad, either. Fister has pitched great recently, dropping his ERA to 3.27 with a 5-3 record and 66 strikeouts. Verlander has been somewhat disappointing for his standards thus far in 2013. He is sitting at 7-4 with a 3.70 ERA and 87 strikeouts to go with it.

One of the most rock-solid staffs in baseball, the Tigers’ staff is one to be aware of if you’re an opposing team. It’s not often you find a team that’s top 10 in almost every major offensive and pitching category.

In fact, in the lat 13 games, Tigers’ starters have pitched 94 innings with a 2.49 ERA, recording nearly 11 strikeouts per nine innings, an opponent average of just .193 and a walks and hits per innings pitched measured at an impressive 0.90 mark.

This could be the most complete team in all of baseball, but one thing is for sure — this is the best starting rotation in the major leagues.

Connor Muldowney is a columnist for Follow him on Twitter @Connormuldowney, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

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