Fans didn't quite get the pitcher's duel they were hoping for tonight. While David Price and Johnny Cueto pitched well, each offense was able to get to them briefly before a rain delay shortened their nights. What they got instead was a six-hour marathon eventually resulting in the Tigers dropping to 34-32.
The Reds plated a run in the second inning -- ending a 17-inning scoreless streak by Price -- with a squeeze bunt by former Tigers' shortstop Eugenio Suarez. Todd Frazier tacked on another run in the fourth inning with his third home run in two days, a big solo shot to right-center field.
The Tigers were baffled by Cueto and his unpredictable delivery and arsenal through the first five innings, but were able to get to him in the sixth inning, when Miguel Cabrera took the lead with a three-run home run to right field. As Cabrera rounded third, the sprinkles that had started to fall a few minutes earlier turned into a downpour. As he crossed home plate, thunder rolled across the Cincinnati sky and the grounds crew rolled the tarp onto the field.
After a lengthy delay, the two teams retook the field, but without their respective aces. Alex Wilson gave up the tying run while pitching two innings of relief, but Tyler Collins quickly reclaimed the lead with the second go-ahead home run of the night. But that score wouldn't last either, as Joba Chamberlain coughed up the lead again in eighth inning on a hard-luck grounder that caromed off of second base.
The score would remain tied at four runs apiece until Tigers' manager Brad Ausmus was forced to turn to his closer in the 13th inning. Ian Krol started the inning after working out of trouble in the 12th and promptly allowed a single. After the runner was sacrificed over to second base, Ausmus issued a walk to Billy Hamilton and called Joakim Soria in from the bullpen. Soria, pitching in a non-save situation for the first time since May 12th, allowed a single before getting a strikeout. With two outs and the bases loaded, Frazier hit yet another home run -- his fourth in two games -- to put the Tigers and any thoughts about surviving to the 14th inning to bed.
The game ended about six hours and 10 minutes after the first pitch.
Miguel Cabrera: His big fly to the opposite field in the sixth inning was the only offense the team could muster against Cueto, one of the best pitchers in the game today.
Ian Kinsler: A double in the first inning was all that kept Cueto from carrying a no-hitter into the sixth inning, in which Kinsler again got on base, setting the table for Cabrera's go-ahead home run.
Tyler Collins: Collins came off the bench and didn't even bother taking a pitch, socking the first pitch he saw into the seats in right field
Rain and extra innings: All delays are annoying, but a one hour, 14-minute delay that ended the night for a couple of the league's best pitchers is especially evil. Combined with four extra innings, this game ended after 1 a.m. for most of the interested fans.
Yoenis Cespedes and J.D. Martinez: 0-for-10 with four strikeouts between them. Not what you're looking for from your fourth and fifth hitters. Martinez did find his way on base in the 11th inning via hit-by-pitch, to be fair.
The chapter on bullpen management in the Manager's Bible: Brad Ausmus allowed his best pitcher to rot in the bullpen while he waited for the offense to give him a lead to protect. By the time he finally used Soria, he was already in hot water. Soria still gets blame for giving up the game-winning home run, but he was forced into a difficult situation he never should have been in.
STREAKS AND STATS:
- David Price last allowed a run in the third inning of his June 6th start against the White Sox. Since then he retired 51 batters until Jay Bruce crossed the plate in the second inning.
- With Cabrera's sixth-inning home run, he has now hit safely in six consecutive games, and has reached base in 16 of the last 17. He is now hitting .373/.467/.667 in the month of June.
- J.D. Martinez's 10-game hitting streak came to an end, as he failed to reach base in his four plate appearances.
- Yoenis Cespedes, who was also working on a 10-game hitting stretch, saw his streak come to an end as well after six trips to the plate.
- The tying run that Alex Wilson allowed in the sixth was only his second since May 24th. Tonight's run raised his ERA to 1.17 over that span.
- Al Alburquerque tacked two more scoreless innings onto his record, he's only allowed two runs since April 24th. He has posted a 0.83 ERA in his last 21-2/3 innings.
- Ian Krol took the loss in tonight's game, his first loss as a member of the Detroit Tigers. It's the second loss of his career, the first coming as a rookie with the Nationals at 22 years old.
WIN PROBABILITY GRAPH: