Detroit Tigers first baseman Prince Fielder (28) throws a ball to a fan in the stands following the end of the top of the eighth inning of a spring training game against the Washington Nationals at Joker Marchant Stadium. Awwwww.
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Justin Verlander pitched four scoreless innings with four strikeouts, but the Tigers bullpen took center stage in the middle innings as it wasted home runs by Brandon Inge and Brennan Boesch in a 5-5 tie with the Nationals.
Fifth-starter candidate Casey Crosby takes the lion's share of the blame, as he allowed three runs in 1 1/3 innings on the mound. A pair of throwing errors -- one by himself, one by Prince Fielder -- didn't help the outcome. Nor did allowing two hits and two walks, of course. Bullpen stalwarts Joaquin Benoit and Jose Valverde also allowed runs. Valverde got tagged with his first blown save in quite a while.
Inge is obviously the other key figure. Batting second to get in an extra plate appearance -- we think -- he went 1-for-2 with a walk. He now has four hits in 14 at bats and two walks. He's not knocking the barn door down or anything, but you're hard pressed to knock him for his showing this spring.
Boesch and Delmon Young both had multi-hit games.