Catching Fire: Night of a thousand feet of home runs

If not winning, the Detroit Tigers certainly have been doing a lot of home-run hitting over the last week or so, and, after some extra-inning disappointments during that stretch, they finally put it all together last night for an overtime win last night in a home series opener against the Seattle Mariners. That game featured three Tigers homers, each of which gave the team the lead. Especially exciting for Detroit was that two of them came off the bat of Justin Upton, who finally appears to be heating up for his new team after suffering one of the worst offensive stretches of his career.

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Upton’s first of the night was a dead-center bomb in the seventh that gave the Tigers a 7-6 lead, and his second, which clinched the game in walk-off fashion in the twelfth, landed beyond the bullpen in left. There likely is no one happier about this apparent return to power than Upton himself, and, especially with J.D. Martinez out with an elbow injury, it couldn’t be more timely for the team.

Upton’s homers last night inspired celebration, but Miguel Cabrera’s, which gave the Tigers a 2-0 lead in the first inning, inspired awe. I’ve never seen a Comerica Park home run hit where Cabrera hit his last night. No one has.

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Jam the Bountygate Shuffle

We do a lot here with sports and music, so an opportunity to combine the two is pretty irresistible. Such an opportunity comes today in the form of a positive externality of the NFL’s crackdown on the New Orleans Saints’ bounty program, which we’ve been covering here on a derivative level. Back in March, the league suspended Saints head coach Sean Payton for a year because of the bounties. As a Deadspin reader reports, Payton seems to be handling his time off just fine.

At least nominally, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals have been on my radar since college, when they started getting some pub and a friend got into them, but I never listened to them, and I figured my friend’s allegiance to Grace Potter was based mostly on them both being female Vermontsters. When I saw today’s Jam for the first time, though, I realized my assumptions about Potter’s sound were inaccurate, and while I still am mulling her drunk-girl-in-a-late-night-diner look, she, Warren Haynes, and Sean Payton are welcome to rock ZZ Top anytime: