Earned His Tiger Stripes: Maggs 3-4, RBI (67), BB
32 runs, 41 hits. That's what the Tigers offense exploded for in this three game set against the Nationals, a sweep (their fourth of the season), completed with an 8-4 victory this evening. When it all came down to it, we didn't need no stinkin' DH in the Nation's capital. Eight was just enough. And even Mike Maroth got a double in this series.
Jeremy Bonderman picked up his eighth victory of the season tonight -- his eighth win in a row after starting the season with five tough luck no-decisions (in which the Tigers lost four games by a combined five runs). He didn't go deep into the game, though, as the Nationals roughed him up for three runs on four hits in the fourth inning. This matched his shortest outing of the season, as he went only 5.0 innings against Baltimore on April 30th.
The fourth inning also brought along a bit of a scare as Pudge was forced to exit due to a leg injury. We have found out that a hamstring strain was bothering him and he will be listed as day-to-day as of right now. Rabelo drew a walk in this one and scored a run, so the Tigers still got good production out of the catcher spot this evening.
With the game tied 3-3 the Tigers offense decided to get serious in the sixth. The inning saw nine batters come to the plate, forcing 44 pitches and roughing up Nats' relief for five runs on six hits. The most notable at bat of the inning came from Omar Infante, who saw 11 pitches from Jesus Colome before knocking in Carlos Guillen with a base hit.
Having a four-run lead with four innings remaining seems like a good situation to be in, unless you've become accustomed to seeing the Tigers bullpen work over the last month or so. Tonight, however, they got the job done. The combination of Grilli, Byrdak, Rodney and Jones allowed four hits and a run in their four innings of work -- not too shabby all things considered. They were hit hard, though, and Rodney did have trouble finding the strike zone at times, but I guess you can't complain about the results.
And in all of this, somehow Todd Jones got a one-two-three inning after almost blowing game one of this series.
Up Next: Friday night against Atlanta. Kenny Rogers returns.