For a few innings, the Detroit Tigers looked to be in control. A leadoff home run from Ian Kinsler and an RBI single from John Hicks put the Tigers up 2-0 on the Texas Rangers after 1 1⁄2 innings. Starter Anibal Sanchez coughed up a two-run home run in the bottom of the inning, but the Tigers answered back with a two-run shot from Mikie Mahtook. Up 4-2, Tigers fans — the few actually watching this game, at least — wondered aloud whether Detroit could actually avoid the sweep.
Needless to say, that didn’t happen. Sanchez gave up another two-run homer in the bottom of the third, then departed with a hamstring injury just a few pitches later. Chad Bell was solid for a couple of innings out of the bullpen, but Joe Jimenez, Daniel Stumpf, Drew VerHagen, and the Tigers defense combined to allow four more runs in the sixth, effectively putting the game out of reach.
Unfortunately, there is little else to glean from this game. Kinsler and Mahtook did their part at the top of the lineup, reaching base a combined seven times while driving in three of Detroit’s five runs. The rest of the Tigers offense put together a decent effort, with 11 hits in all, but they could not muster any more runs until both teams were playing out the string in the ninth inning.
Once again, pitching was the reason Detroit lost. Sanchez gave up four runs in just 2 1⁄3 innings, ballooning his season-long ERA to 6.95. The home runs he allowed were his 22nd and 23rd of the season in just 77 2⁄3 innings. Jimenez’s ERA is now up to nearly 13.00, while VerHagen’s is north of 7.00.
Things don’t get any easier following the sweep in Texas. The Tigers are off on Thursday, and return home to face the white-hot Los Angeles Dodgers over the weekend.
Any fans who actually watched the whole game.
STATS AND INFO:
Mikie Mahtook has more fWAR than Cameron Maybin this year— Bless You Boys (@blessyouboys) August 17, 2017