This may very well be the last game of the season, if Mother Nature has her way, and what a game it was. Rather than the usual format of recap I’m going to do something a little different tonight as I review the inning-by-inning actions of Andrew Romine, who became the fifth player in MLB history to play all nine positions in one game.
Nothing happened offensively (I know, I was shocked, too), so let’s jump right to the bottom of the inning.
Romine started the night in left field and collected the first two outs on flys. He also hustled to stop a gapper from Sano that could have scored Joe Mauer had it snuck closer to the warning track.
Farmer struggled a little in the first, giving up a walk to Joe Mauer, and ultimately loading the bases. Another walk to Max Kepler walked in the run. Farmer was already up to 35 pitches at this point.
Can we talk about how Slegers is 6’10”? Doug Fister is only 6’8” and he had to chase off minor cloud cover whenever he took the mound for the Tigers. 6’10” is very tall. Like... really tall.
Tigers showed some offensive spark in the second with McCann and Romine both collecting hits, and Navarro scoring the Tigers’ first run.
In the bottom of the second Romine moved to centerfield. He didn’t have to do anything for the inning, making it a pretty easy check off the list.
Farmer gave up another walk after starting the inning with two quick outs. He got lucky on a fly out from Joe Mauer, ending the inning.
Romine to right field. Third if the way there!
Slegers is a monster. 12/15 for first pitch strikes. Easy 1-2-3 inning.
Romine, having crossed the outfield off his list, headed to third base, shifting Nick Castellanos out to right field.
Fox Sports Detroit interviewed Romine’s family — his mother, sister, and wife — to ask their opinions on the historic game. They were both lovely. Romine apparently loves babies, so if you ever need an icebreaker, hand him a baby.
Fun fact: when Romine catches, he will be using a glove his brother Austin Romine of the New York Yankees sent him for the event.
Woah, we’re half way there. Romine started the inning having a good laugh with Twins’ catcher Jason Castro. Potentially asking for some pro tips for when he gets behind the dish? Who knows.
Romine collected a walk, the first of the game for Slegers. Kind of feels like this is going to be a good night for Romine. Tigers got lucky and a pinch-hitting Candelario was able to score JaCoby Jones, then get all the way to third on an overthrow error by Castro. Candelario then scored when Castro dropped the ball at home plate and was unable to tag him out.
The Tigers lead 3-1.
Castro did manage to get Presley out on a run home.
Romine moved to shortstop. He helped turn a 4-6-3 double play, making it look easy. Dixon Machado made a hell of a stop on the ball and an eagle-eyed Farmer insisted the Tigers make a review call on the play, because it was absolutely an out. Really an absolutely incredible play by Machado.
2⁄3 of the way through, just motoring right along. Tigers are leading. 1-2-3 inning for the Twins.
Bottom of the inning, Romine moves — as expected — to second base. Farmer’s night came to an end, and in spite of a rocky start it was actually a pretty solid outing. Chad Bell came on to replace him, and had a quick 1-2-3 inning of his own.
JaCoby Jones is all about that bunt now, apparently. 1-2-3 inning.
ROMINE IS CATCHING! This is a first for his career. Bryan Holaday moves to second base, thus negating the need to move take Navarro out too early. Weird. Suspect we’ll see Holaday to first next inning and Kinsler coming in to take over second, but we’ll see.
#RomineAllNine pic.twitter.com/2RIeSskFvM— Bless You Boys (@blessyouboys) October 1, 2017
JaCoby Jones very nearly made one of the best catches of the entire season, but dropped it as he landed, and smacked the ground in obvious frustration. It was tough to watch because of how incredible the catch would have been. Twins scored a run on an RBI single from Zack Granite.
Romine was pulled as catcher after three batters, then moved back to second base (likely to mitigate the difficult situation of having to catch for Drew VerHagen if Blaine Hardy was pulled before the end of the inning). Hardy managed to pitch his way out of difficulty, however. Only two more positions left!
John Curtissssssssss had a 1-2-3 inning, now let’s move on to the important stuff.
ANDREW ROMINE PITCHING TO MIGUEL SANO.
HE THREW A STRIKE.
ROMINE PARTICIPATED IN GETTING OUT MIGUEL SANO.
Aaaaand then moved to first base to complete all nine positions! He did it! BEST WALLSIDE WINDOWS PITCHING CHANGE EVER.
Also this is a cute fact I didn’t know.
Romine replaced Efren Navarro at first base, one of his best friends who stood up in his wedding.— anthony fenech (@anthonyfenech) October 1, 2017
The Minneapolis crowd was awesome, giving him a big round of applause, then getting hugs and high fives from Brad Ausmus and his teammates. Was it a gimmick move? Sure, but it was also a heck of a lot of fun to watch. History unfolding in front of us.
If the Tigers win, Andrew Romine will get a hold. Does that make him one of the top five relievers in the bullpen?
Romine popped out to end the top of the ninth, then returned to first base.
Shane Greene, the closer, came on hoping to keep the Tigers in the win column.
Romine, fittingly, collected the final out of the game, tagging the final player of the game out at first. A true hightlight finish.
The beautiful thing about this game, as silly as it was, is that it gave fans something to tune in for, something to cheer about. And for a guy like Romine to be the spark over so much excitement is a wonderful thing. It goes to show that Tigers fans can rally around players that aren’t superstars. There will be plenty for fans to cheer for in the coming seasons, even if the team isn’t winning championships.
This game proved that baseball can still be fun, even when your team is on the bottom.
#Tigers LIVE Postgame 9.30.17: Andrew #RomineAllNine pic.twitter.com/3yZMgZNIY2— FOX Sports Detroit (@FOXSportsDet) October 1, 2017