The Detroit Tigers took the field to celebrate Miguel Cabrera’s 35th birthday today, and it was a birthday bash, to say the least, as the team notched a 6-5 win in a game with four game-tying and lead-changing hits in the 8th inning onward.
Miguel Cabrera absolutely showed up to his own party. First, he mashed a double in the first inning. When the double did not result in any runs, he decided to hit a home run in the bottom of the sixth to give the team a 2-1 lead. It was the 464th home run of Cabrera’s career, passing fellow future hall-of-famer Adrian Beltre to reach 35th place on the all-time leaderboard. Jeimer Candelario launched some early birthday fireworks as well, hitting a monster home run that tied the game 1-1 in the bottom of the third.
John Hicks also got in on the home run action, giving Tigers free curly fries with a three-run home run to take a 5-4 lead in the 8th after Daniel Stumpf and Drew VerHagen allowed three runs earlier in the inning. Unfortunately, Shane Greene entered the game with a one-run lead and immediately blew the save, allowing a solo home run to pinch-hitting Luis Sardinas (his first home run of the year and the fifth of his career).
The hero of the game was Dixon Machado. After a pretty quiet performance throughout the game, Machado launched a walk-off home run in the bottom of the 9th to propel the Tigers to a series win over the Orioles. Machado has come into his own so far this year, with seven doubles and a walk-off home run under his belt in the early going. The home run was Machado’s first of the year and the second of his young career.
Matthew Boyd was brilliant, bringing him to an extremely impressive 1.40 ERA. He retired four straight to start the game before allowing a surprising solo home run to Danny Valencia, who entered the game batting under .150. He followed the at-bat with a five-pitch walk, but thankfully slowed Baltimore’s momentum with two quick outs, including an at-bat where he induced three swinging strikes from Caleb Joseph on a lively changeup. From there, he cruised until the sixth inning, in which he gave up two hard-hit balls, including a scorched double by Manny Machado. Thankfully, Boyd was able to strand Machado, allowing the Tigers to take a lead in the bottom of the inning. He came out to get one more strikeout against Chris Davis for good measure before departing. He finished with one earned run on two hits in six and a third innings. He struck out six and walked three.
Checking in on other Tigers, Jose Iglesias continues to struggle at the plate. He went 1-for-3 today, the one hit initially being ruled out before the Tigers challenged the call, and sits at an abysmal .130 average. Both Jeimer Candelario and Nicholas Castellanos continued to hit the ball well with 2-for-4 days. Additionally, JaCoby Jones went 2-for-4 and flashed his baserunning and fielding prowess throughout the game.
Tweet of the Game
Birthday vibes. pic.twitter.com/bjYymGHZLO— MLB GIFS (@MLBGIFs) April 18, 2018
Who was the Tigers’ player of the game?
This poll is closed
Dixon Machado (2-4, 1 HR, 1 RBI)
Matthew Boyd (6.1 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 6 K)
Miguel Cabrera (2-4, 1 HR, 1 RBI)
John Hicks (1-4, 1 HR, 3 RBI)