Apr 13, 2012; Chicago, IL, USA; Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Max Scherzer throws a pitch during the first inning against the Chicago White Sox at US Cellular Field. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-US PRESSWIRE
Snap reaction: It was the home opener for the Chicago White Sox as the Detroit Tigers rolled into town with their sterling 5-1 record. So much for a 161-1 season, as solid White Sox pitching and defense combined with iiffy Tigers defense gave the ChiSox a 5-2 victory.
After the ridiculousness of the grounds crew's incompetence was uncovered, the game turned into a pitcher's duel. Both starters, the White Sox's Jake Peavy and the Tigers' Max Scherzer, were dealing from the get go .
Scherzer was the polar opposite of his horrific first appearance, tossing a quality start of 6 IP, 3 R, and most impressively, 11 K (including a Golden Sombrero for Adam Dunn). Scherzer did allow a 5th inning solo home run by Dayan Viciedo, and RBI hits from Paul Konerko and A.J. Pierzynski in the 6th (the 3rd run scoring on a bang-bang play at the plate,which could have gone either way). But overall, it was a highly encouraging start after Scherzer's meltdown against the Red Sox.
Peavy was even better. He took a no-hitter into the 4th, sitting down 10 straight Tigers until Brennan Boesch singled with 1 out. The Tigers finally got to Peavy in the 7th. Delmon Young knocked him out of the box, smoking a 1 iron down the left field line, just clearing the wall for a 2 run home run. It was 3-2 White Sox at that point, and anyone's game.
But the wheels fell off in the late innings, as the White Sox flashed glove leather, while the Tigers lived down to preseason defensive expectations.
In the 7th, Viciedo make a fine diving catch on an Andy Dirks liner, ending the inning and saving 2 runs. In the 8th, an excellent defensive play by SS Alexei Ramirez turned what looked to be a game tying RBI single by Cabrera into an inning ending double play.
In the bottom of the 8th, Young showed why he should be the full-time DH, and not allowed to touch a glove...ever. With Daniel Schlereth on the mound (Gah!) Alejandro De Aza hit a high fly to deep left. Young played the ball like it was his personal kryptonite, taking a route which could have easily been mistaken for his running drunken circles in in the outfield. Young badly whiffed on the catch, De Aza was given a gift triple by the White Sox's apparently blind official scorer.
With Young opening the door, the White Sox proceeded to burst through, scoring 2 runs on a Brent Morrel single and a Brayan Villarreal wild pitch, giving you the 5-2 final score. Game over.
Scherzer takes a tough loss, falling to 0-1. Peavy moves to 1-0 with the victory, Hector Santiago picked up his third save of the young season.