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Tigers vs. Yankees, 2012 ALCS Game 1: Even with win, blown lead resonates

The Detroit Tigers almost blew it, but found a way to hold onto Game 1 of the American League Championship Series against the New York Yankees.

Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports - Presswire

The Detroit Tigers won Game 1 of the American League Championship Series 6-4 in 12 innings over the New York Yankees, despite allowing the Yankees to tie with four runs in the ninth.

Jose Valverde once again couldn't hold the late-inning lead, but was bailed out on a Nick Swisher mistake off the bat of Delmon Young, which brought in the eventual game-winning run in Miguel Cabrera.

Over at Bless You Boys, Al Beaton discusses the decision by manager Jim Leyland to keep Valverde in the game even after giving up a two-run homer to Ichiro Suzuki:

This blown save is 100 percent on Leyland. He saw what we all did, and even when he had Dotel ready, left Valverde twisting in the wind.

You have to believe management (that being GM Dave Dombrowski) would be speaking with Leyland about Valverde. Wouldn't they have to have a discussion, no matter what? Valverde's ineffectiveness has escalated into a "situation." Hell, it was a "situation" after Game 4 of the ALDS. It's escalated into "You won't get a contract for 2013 if you don't get this figured out by game time tomorrow."

It will be an interesting situation to monitor as the series goes on, with Valverde's confidence surely rattled at this point.