DETROIT -- Anibal Sanchez's 2016 season has not gotten off to a good start, and Saturday was his worst outing yet. In fact, it was the second-worst of his career in a few different ways. It would've been a lot to ask for the Detroit Tigers offense to come back from a double-digit deficit, but even still, the Tigers only had two hits and lost 10-1 in blowout fashion to the Cleveland Indians.
Perhaps things will shape up down the road, but right now Sanchez is a mess. His control was nowhere to be found and regardless of what he threw, his pitches found the barrel of too many Cleveland bats. The hits were akin to paper cuts through the first two innings, but the Indians laid it on thick in the third, driving Sanchez from the game early.
By the time Tigers manager Brad Ausmus went out to pull Sanchez, the damage had already been done. Unfortunately, it wouldn't have mattered when he was pulled. It just wasn't working for Sanchez on Saturday. By the time he was yanked, the Tribe had hit one double short of the cycle as a team, which was corrected when Kyle Ryan took over -- he allowed back-to-back doubles to start.
From the get-go it was clear Sanchez didn't have his stuff, and at least Ausmus had Ryan warming early in the game. A three-run blast by Yan Gomes sealed Sanchez's fate, though, and while Ryan did rather well to both eat up innings and keep the Indians off the board, the offense had no chance to come back.
Speaking of that offense, they didn't show up against Corey Kluber. For the second consecutive day, there was next-to-no contact and the team had all of two hits. The second ended up in the right field seats for a home run by Jarrod Saltalamacchia, but by then the score was already lopsided. Meanwhile, Justin Upton was busy striking out three times to earn a hat trick.
Kyle Ryan: He gave up two doubles and a walk to start in the third. After that, though, he retired the next 10 batters in order. He needed a total of 31 pitches to get through those 10 batters and didn't give up another hit until the seventh, when he allowed two and a run to end his day.
Jarrod Saltalamacchia: Hit a monster home run to right field for his sixth dinger of the year.
The bullpen: Generally speaking, the combination of Ryan, Alex Wilson, and Blaine Hardy were solid.
Anibal Sanchez: Lasted just 2 1/3 innings, giving up seven runs (six earned) on nine hits, including a three-run home run by Yan Gomes.
Tigers offense: MIA once again. J.D Martinez was responsible for the lone hit (a single in the second, erased on a double play) until Saltalamacchia's home run.
Justin Upton: Struck out three more times. If ever there was a batter lost at the batter's box this year, it's him.
STREAKS AND STATS:
- Anibal Sanchez has given up eight runs in a start only two other times in his career. April 18, 2015 (nine runs), and July 30, 2006 (eight runs) as a member of the Florida Marlins. He lasted 4 1/3 innings in the latter start.
- Sanchez lasted only 2 1/3 innings on Saturday, tied for the second-shortest start of his career. He also went 2 1/3 on Aug. 18, 2015 during a rain-shortened outing that the Tigers ultimately won. Sanchez's shortest starts occurred on Aug. 10, 2011 and Sept. 8, 2008 (both with the Marlins) when he lasted a mere 1 2/3 innings. He gave up five runs in each of those two games.
- Sanchez's Game Score of 14 is the second-lowest of his MLB career. His worst start by GS came on April 18, 2015 where he had a GS of six after giving up nine runs on nine hits across 3 1/3 innings pitched to the White Sox.
- Jarrod Salalamacchia's home run in the fifth marked his sixth of the season. He leads the team in home runs, and is one of five players in the American League leading with six. The others are: Robinson Cano, Josh Donaldson, Manny Machado, and Mike Moustakas.
- The Tigers are 4-6 in their last 10 games, and 8-8 on the year. They've lost the last three consecutive games and have driven in a total of two runs in that time frame.
- During the game, the Tigers announced they'd claimed catcher John Hicks off of waivers from the Minnesota Twins. He has been assigned to Double-A Erie.
Justin Upton is 7th Tiger in last 20 seasons with 30 strikeouts in first month, first since Austin Jackson and Ryan Raburn in 2011.— Jason Beck (@beckjason) April 23, 2016
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