After giving Edwin Jackson some run support in his last three starts, the Tigers' lineup reverted back to their old ways tonight. Of course, no one's been scoring runs against Zack Greinke this season, so that was probably to be expected. And with such a thin margin of error, any mistake was going to be costly. Unfortunately, the Tigers were the first ones to blink.
Jackson matched Greinke for five innings, holding on fiercely to a 1-0 lead. (That lead could've been bigger, had the Tigers not squandered chances to put more runs on the board in the first and fourth innings by grounding into double plays.) But he made a costly mistake in the sixth by fielding Luis Hernandez's bunt and throwing it wide of first base, putting runners on second and third with no outs.
It was going to be a tough play for Jackson no matter what, as the bunt was down the third base line and Hernandez was already a couple of steps closer to first, batting left-handed. But Jackson also lost his footing, causing him to double-clutch and then rush the throw. Of course, we don't know if Jackson still wouldn't have allowed three more hits after the error. But if he makes a better throw, lets Brandon Inge field the ball, or maybe just decides to eat the ball instead, perhaps the damage could've been lessened.
Then again, if the Tigers could've scored more than one run, we wouldn't have just devoted two paragraphs to one play. Nor would the game have hinged upon it.
Curtis Granderson seemed to break out of his slump with a 3-for-5 game yesterday. But he may have slid back down the hill again, with an 0-for-4 night. Grandy is 0-for-8 against Greinke this year, with three strikeouts. Combine that with last year, and he's hitless in his last 16 at-bats vs. Greinke.
And if the double plays cost the Tigers chances to score more runs tonight, Miguel Cabrera and Jeff Larish deserve wags of the finger for grounding into those run killers.
Comment of the Night:
it gives Hillman a full bullpen to misuse tomorrowby rock n rye
One last number to leave you with: Greinke's ERA against the Tigers this season is 0.50.