When the White Sox hit a two-run homer at the bottom of the second, many Tigers fans watching sighed and readied themselves for more of the same. The Tigers lately have struggled to hold a lead, and giving it up so early to the White Sox seemed a sure sign things were tilting away from their favor.
Then, Justin Upton — quietly, steadily the best player on the team this season — knocked in a two-run blast of his own. Magic was in the air, and it wasn’t just the nicknames, because Miguel Cabrera came to the plate after Upton and knocked in his own home run, the first he has hit since July 28th.
Steady efforts from Andrew “Robomb” Romine, Ian “Bootsie” Kinsler, and the hard-hitting Dixon “Mowgli” Machado soon elevated the score to 5-2, and while not enough of a lead to breathe easy, it certainly gave viewers something to smile about.
Brad “I love getting ejected” Ausmus, apparently, wasn’t one of the ones smiling. Ausmus must have said something to the home plate umpire, because he was told to stop and when he continued he was ejected. It all happened so quickly many people missed it.
I believe this is the first ejection of Mahrley's MLB career. And he was very subtle about it. https://t.co/neEmEZioCO— Evan Woodbery (@evanwoodbery) August 27, 2017
Buck Farmer, was efficient with his pitches. Also apparently his real name is George? Mind = blown. His slider looked good and in spite of the early home run he managed to minimize the damage by the White Sox. By the sixth inning he hadn’t issued a walk, with the exception of a hit-by-pitch to Abreu.
Mike Pelfrey took over pitching for the Sox in the sixth inning.
Pelfrey may have a 5.05 ERA overall, but he's 1-0 with a 3.72 ERA, and 9Ks in 9.2 IP vs. the #Tigers this year (on their dime, mind you)— Matthew B. Mowery (@matthewbmowery) August 27, 2017
Nick “Umpires don’t get nicknames” Mahrley, the home plate umpire, managed to take a ball to the throat in the bottom of the sixth, off a foul tip that bounced off James McCann’s helmet and up under Mahrley’s neck guard. The umpire was able to continue after being checked by the White Sox trainer.
Rain, which had been falling lightly early in the game started to pick up in the sixth inning, but the teams continued to play through it. Is it just me or is rain nearly inevitable when the Tigers play against the Sox in Chicago?
A base hit from Anderson brought the Sox up to 5-3, and that would be the end of Buck Farmer’s night. Daniel “Donald” Stumpf came on to relieve him. The rain started to fall in earnest at this point, as if the weather gods were trying to give the still-ahead Tigers a win. Stumpf was able to close out the sixth inning without and further runs.
Pelfrey hit James “McCannon” McCann with a pitch, loading up the bases and ending Pelf’s night. Romine came on and scored Mikie “Night Hawk” Mahtook on a sac fly. Tigers up 6-3. Petricka nearly beheaded Jose “Candelita” Iglesias with a wild pitch, but Iglesias has watched The Matrix a lot apparently, because he ducked in time to miss the hit.
Warwick “Aussie” Saupold and Alex “Dale” Wilson both made relief appearances from the bullpen, Wilson on his third night in a row. Wilson showed strain early and was quickly relieved by Shane “Shaner” Greene hoping to collect a five-out save. A 5-4-3 double play took care of two outs for him right away. He wrapped things up in the ninth, after collecting an error in which he overran an infield hit. A called strike ended the game with two men left on base. Tigers win!
Dixon Machado - a hot bat, and a damn fine near catch near the dugout, Machado showed some nice hustle all over today’s game.
Justin Upton - You bet I’m going to shout out the guy who tied the game and made an awesome catch on the warning track in left.
Mike Pelfrey - because the Tigers are still paying him to be terrible. But hey, it worked out well for Detroit this time.