The Infamous “Tiger Killer”

On Memorial Day Weekend, I traveled down to Cincinnati for some sun and golf. When a group of clouds brought a large rainstorm onto the course delaying our round, I ventured into the clubhouse where a number of golfers were gathering around the t.v. watching highlights of the Reds-Astros game during the rain delay. It was while watching, that one fellow viewer called Lance Berkman a “Reds Killer”. Much like my blue collar baseball brethren, he spouted off a handful of players who have taken it to the Little Red Machine over the past decade or so. Any Tigers fan did not have to stray too far from their television this weekend to realize that ‘killers’ really are on the loose for every Major League team.

Orioles OF Luke Scott is your typical journeyman ballplayer who has searched long and far for playing time. In his two seasons where he’s had at least 215 ABs, he’s hit a combined .256 with twice as many K’s than walks. In his eleven games since 2008, Scott has batted 19-38 (.500) with 10 HRs and 19 RBI. Let that sink in for a moment… an AVERAGE game versus the Tigers is 2-4, with a HR and 2 RBI. His clutch hitting early in this weekend’s series took two solid pitching performances by Verlander and Jackson to eek out a split.

In recent times, Luke Scott is another name added to the list of players who seem to lift their game when taking on the Tigers. Earlier this season, Joe Crede reaffirmed his position as a “Tiger Killer”. Crede this season is hitting a stunning .239 for his new Twins team. When Detroit made one of its final trips to the Dome three weeks ago, Crede netted a total of 8 RBI over this three-game span, including three game winning hits. His 9 RBI in five games against Detroit is more than half of his 2009 total through two months. Whether they’re a Reds, Tigers or Nationals Killer, everyone knows these players by heart and never misses them when they head to the opposite league.