DETROIT -- Living in the clouds is a difficult thing to sustain. The weather was relatively warm for the first time in days, but Shane Greene's fourth start of the season was not a shining moment. The Detroit Tigers lost 13-1 to the Cleveland Indians in the series opener, and an opposite field home run by Nick Castellanos went down as a mere footnote.
After two quick outs in the first, Greene fell behind and allowed a single then walked a batter, before giving up a two-run double to Brandon Moss, giving the Indians an early lead. A leadoff double in the second came around to score on after a pair of sacrifices, handing a 3-0 lead to the Indians.
Greene never made it out of the fifth inning, and for that matter he wasn't able to record an out in that inning. A leadoff single -- the fourth inning in a row Greene gave up a hit to start an inning -- not only scored, but the Indians sent nine men to the plate. Cleveland put up a six-spot against Tigers pitching, including a first-pitch, three-run bomb against Alex Wilson, who came on to replace Greene.
After the home run, Wilson recorded all three outs in the fifth on just 10 pitches, but the damage had been done. The home run was merely salt on the wound. The next man out of the bullpen suffered the same fate as Greene, with Al Alburquerque giving up a smoked leadoff double that was soon followed by a Lonnie Chisenhall two-run blast to right.
As for the Tigers' offense, the only run they scored was off the bat of Castellanos, who hit a solo home run to right field in the second inning with one out. Anthony Gose was particularly baffled by Indians starter Danny Salazar as he struck out four times. Alex Avila finished with three strikeouts, failing to record a hit.
The Tigers' best scoring opportunity came in the first inning when they loaded the bases following a walk, single, and plunking of Victor Martinez. Yoenis Cespedes smoked a pitch to deep center, but with the chilly air and general complete wrong part of the ballpark, it went as a long, loud, flyout. The inning ended, along with any chances at taking an early lead against the Indians.
Nick Castellanos: A first-pitch home run got the Tigers on the board in the second inning. The ball initially didn't appear like it would carry out, and both the center fielder and right fielder continued to backtrack as if it would go as a flyout, until it went out. Another one of those opposite field hits on the first pitch that went out at 108 mph and traveled a distance of 401 feet.
Ian Kinsler: Finished 2-for-2 with two walks against Salazar. One of the few highlights in Friday's game.
Shane Greene: After three consecutive stellar starts, Greene came back to Planet Earth. He lasted just four innings and faced five batters in the fifth without recording an out. His day ended with eight runs allowed on nine hits, two walks, and just one strikeout. His ERA rose from 0.39 to 3.00.
Tigers offense ... again: Eight hits, 0-for-5 with runners in scoring position, 11 men left on base, including a bases loaded situation in the first inning. The only production to come out of it all was the solo home run by Castellanos. Cabrera and Victor Martinez were a combined 1-for-7 against the Indians. The Tigers aren't going to win many games when your three- and four-hole hitters aren't producing.
STREAKS AND STATS:
- J.D. Martinez was 0-for-7 with six strikeouts and a walk when facing Indians starter Danny Salazar entering Friday night's game. After striking out in the first and grounding out for the first time against Salazar, Martinez recorded a single past the Indians' shortstop Jose Ramirez. It was the first career-hit against Salazar, ending his 0-for-9 streak against the righty.
- The Tigers have scored 10 runs in their last five games.
WIN PROBABILITY GRAPH: