Maybe it’s for the best the Tigers didn’t play a double header today, because if the delayed night game was any indication, this was not a good day to play two. The Tigers dropped the first game of four with a score of 8-2.
The Tigers looked sloppy and uncertain, making ugly plays, weak at-bats, and repeating the Matthew Boyd start we witnessed during the first Sox series in April. In order words: it wasn’t great. Worse still were the seven strike outs winning pitcher Mike Pelfrey managed to rack up against his former club. The Tigers, of course, are still paying him.
With Miguel Cabrera and Ian Kinsler both benched to start the game—being kept in good shape for tomorrow’s next double header attempt—it wasn’t the best the Tigers had to offer, and it showed.
Let’s blame it on the late game in Houston and the long day at the park of sitting around and waiting. Whatever put a damper on the Tigers’ game tonight, they’ll hope to shake it off and start fresh tomorrow.
Alex Avila - there wasn’t a lot to cheer about this game, but Avila is really stepping up, taking over starting catcher duties now that James McCann is on the disabled list. He also nailed his sixth home run of the season, one of the few bright offensive moments for the game. If one were so inclined to write names in for the All-Star Game, Avila’s would be a smart choice.
The strike zone - what the heck is this? Homeplate umpire Phil Cuzzi had a very broad definition of the strike zone tonight, that both helped and hindered the Tigers in equal measure. The questionable calls were coming in all night.
Nicholas Castellanos - after sitting out yesterday’s game, Castellanos was back in action again, and once more he had a lot of difficulty managing defense at third base. Bobbles, dives, and plays that left a great deal to be desired. He’s now at 10 errors this season at the quarter mark. Last season he had only nine all year. It wouldn’t be as frustrating if Castellanos was contributing at the plate, but he just seems lost in general at the moment.
STREAKS & INFO:
Jose Abreu is on a 15-game hitting streak against the Tigers. Hopefully during the marathon of games this weekend one of the Tigers’ pitchers can figure out how to end his luck.
Andrew Romine has now played six of the ten AL positions this season so far: left field, center field, third base, shortstop, second base, first base, and designated hitter. The only positions he has yet to play this year are pitcher, catcher, and right field. He also turned a mighty fine double play in the seventh.
Chad Bell, who had gone nine scoreless innings since his MLB debut, finally gave up his first runs, and did it in style, with a 3-run blast by Melky Cabrera in the bottom of the eighth.