|Final - 6.19.2010||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R|
Complete Coverage >
Sorry, folks. No MS Paint highlights tonight, as the Diamondbacks broke a tie game open with a 4 run 6th inning, then held on late to beat the Tigers 6-5. The winning streak is over.
The Tigers did make things interesting over the final 4 innings, chipping away at the lead, scoring single runs in the 6th, 7th and 9th. With 2 outs and 1 on in the bottom of the 9th, the winning run actually came to the plate, in the presence of one Miguel Cabrera.
The Tigers' MVP candidate has had more than his fair share of success in high leverage situations this season. There's no one else I'd have wanted at the plate with the game on the line.
But there were no heroics from Miggy, as new Diamonbacks closer Aaron Heilman stuck out Cabera to end the game, earning his 1st save of the season.
The main story going into tonight's matchup was Rick Porcello's return to the rotation after his 1 start exile. The Tigers skipped Kid Rick's last start so he could work on finding his stuff, especially the sinker.
Porcello's extra rest and bullpen work returned mixed results.
Porcello tossed 5.1 innings, giving up 8 hits, 4 walks and 5 runs. Unfortunately, 2 of the hits were Diamondbacks home runs. Obviously, there's still plenty of work to be done in order for Porcello to find his late '09 form, as he's not there yet. But it is worth noting the final 2 runs were credited to the Tigers starter only after Fu-Te Ni failed in his LOOGY role, allowing the runners he inherited from Porcello to score. Ni gave up a long, game-breaking, 2 RBI triple to only batter he faced, the left hand hitting Gerardo Parra.
Enrique Gonzalez, making his 2nd appearance after his call up from the Mud Hens, replaced Ni. He allowed a sac fly to the first batter his faced, then pitched 3.2 innings of 1 hit, scoreless ball. Gonzalez pitched well enough to allow the Tigers an opportunity to attempt a come back...which came up just short.
As for the Old Home Weekend proceedings and the return of former Tigers, Edwin Jackson did what his fellow Detroit expat, Dontrelle Willis, couldn't do. He beat his former team.
Jackson wasn't great, but as he was for much of his Tigers tenure, he was good enough. Jackson allowed only 1 run in the 1st, despite loading the bases. After the Tigers scored a run in the 2nd, Jackson settled in, and got himself a quality start. Something Porcello, who was supposed to step into Jackson's spot as the Tigers' number 2 starter, can't say...
- Even though Don Kelly contributed 2 hits as the lead off man, he entered the game hitting .203 with a .256 OBP. He should not be the first, second, or even tenth choice to bat lead off. Kelly shouldn't be in the conversation, period. Aa I'm up to HERE with Jim Leyland's cockamamie batting orders, I'm going to ask a favor from the Tigers brass. Every time Leyland does something asinine with his lineup card, (such as having Kelly lead off or allow .188 hitting Ryan Raburn to bat 3rd) I'd like the Tigers to send someone down to the clubhouse...and whap Leyland in the back of his nicotine addled head. At his current rate, the Marlboro Man would be punch drunk by the All-Star break.
- The bottom of the Tigers' batting order continued it's resurgence from total waste of space to mediocre-ish. Brandon Inge, Alex Avila and Ramon Santiago combined for 4 hits and 2 RBI's.
- The Tigers knack for leaving ducks on the pond once again reared it's ugly head. They were 3-17 with RISP, stranding 8 runners. The Tigers had their chances against Diamondbacks' pitching, but they couldn't convert.
- Magglio Ordonez continues to out and out rake. Magg's 2 hit night was his 4th multi-hit game out of the last 5 played.
- Is there anything Brennan Boesch can't do? You can add "Throw runners out at the plate" to the long list of things he can do, as Boesch gunned down Kelly Johnson for the final out in the top of the 9th. Alex Avila did a marvelous job of blocking the plate on the play.
- The man Kelly replaced in the lineup, Austin Jackson, is expected to return to the lineup on Tuesday against the Mets. Setup man Ryan Perry is also very close to rejoining the team, as he will accompany the Tigers on trip road trip to New York.
- Earlier tonight, the Twins did what they do best...crush the souls of we Tigers fans. Those damned Twins beat the Phillies in 11 innings, with a late game comeback, 13-11. Their unlikely win extended their Central lead by a game over the Tigers.
Tomorrow ends the Tigers 9 game home stand against the bottom feeders of MLB's junior varsity. It's been one of the most fun, enjoyable weeks of the season. It would be a nice exclamation point on the Tigers' NL dominance if they could take the rubber game from the Diamondbacks.