Courtesy of Evan Grant, we have Ron Washington's explanation of his 8th inning bullpen usage:
Manager Ron Washington said he brought Madrigal in because with runners at second and third and one out, he felt the need for a strikeout. His hope was the Tigers would pull back Thames, who rarely hits against right-handers, and send up switch-hitting Ramon Santiago. When Jim Leyland failed to comply with his wishes, Washington felt it wiser to set up the double play than allow Thames a chance to get the ball in the air for a sacrifice fly.
Had the double play been in order at the time he went to the bullpen, Washington said he would have used Scott Feldman, who is more prone to get ground balls than Madrigal. But once Madrigal was in the game, he had to face at least one hitter, so he was going to have to face Thames. And the Rangers didn’t get Feldman up, so he couldn’t have warmed up in time to face Gerald Laird. Madrigal struck out Laird, but then allowed a single to Brandon Inge to score the go-ahead runs.
Washington added that, in hindsight, he may turn to Frank Francisco to get an out or two in the eighth inning since he doesn’t really have a right-handed setup reliever.
“I’ve seen too many closers get hurt trying to pitch multiple innings, so I wanted to stay away from it,” Washington said. “But if I’ve got to get one or two outs extra, I don’t think I’d hesitate the next time.”
Okay...setting aside the Francisco issue...
First, he really thought Jim Leyland would burn his utility infielder hitting for Marcus Thames, the DH? Particularly a guy with a career 656 OPS against righties?
Secondly, he would have gone to Feldman if the DP was in order, supposedly...but then he says he stayed with Madrigal after issuing the intentional walk instead of going to Feldman because he didn't have Feldman warming up.
So, given that Feldman wasn't warming up in the first place, how would he have gone to Feldman if the DP had been in order?
Does this make sense to anyone else? Because it sure doesn't to me...