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Twins 5, Tigers 4; ‘Bullpen Day’ goes as expected

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Well. At least it wasn’t a sweep.

MLB: Detroit Tigers at Minnesota Twins Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

The day started weird. First Jacob Turner was supposed to start. Then the Tigers realized they had forgotten basic mathematics, and couldn’t bring Turner up. Due to the 10-day clause, which does not allow for recently demoted players to be brought back to the majors, the Tigers were left to scramble for a starting pitcher for their Sunday match-up with the Minnesota Twins. When the dust settled, Buck Farmer was called upon to toe the slab for the Tigers, and the day was deemed a “bullpen day”.

In the top of the second inning the Tigers opened the scoring on the day when Jim Adduci doubled home Victor Martinez, giving the Tigers a 1-0 lead. Ordorizzi settled in after that getting Mikie Mahtook to pop out, and James McCann and Mike Gerber both to strike out, ending the inning and threat.

Farmer, after throwing a nine-pitch first inning, continued to keep the Twins at bay, only allowing one walk through two quick innings of work. The Twins got their first two knocks off of Farmer in the third inning, and after getting Joe Mauer to bounce out, Farmer gave way to Zac Reininger, as the bullpen day continued.

Reininger gave up a sacrifice fly to Eddie Rosario, the first batter he faced, and knotted the score at one apiece. Jorge Polanco didn’t waste anytime breaking the tie on a deep double to center field, plating Tyler Austin. Polanco closed the book on Buck Farmer’s day, 2.1 innings pitched, two hits, two runs, one walk, and two strikeouts.

Max Kepler extended the Twins lead in the next inning with a rocket to right-center field. After a ground out, Jake Cave hit a 429-foot bomb to the upper deck of center field, extending the lead to 4-1.

Ordorizzi kept cruising, shutting down the Tigers, 1-2-3 in the fourth inning. Ultimately on the day, Odorizzi went 5+IP, surrendering 4 earned runs, and getting pushed from the game after the first three batters of the sixth inning reached base. Matt Magill relieved Odorizzi and immediately walked Niko Goodrum to drive in their second run of the game. Victor Martinez bounced into a double play, trading two outs for another run, and bringing the Tigers within one. The Tigers tied the game on an Adduci screaming line drive over the shortstop’s head.

Daniel Stumpf, recalled from Triple-A instead of Turner, pitched two scoreless innings this afternoon, ending his day getting Jake Cave to strike out on some high cheddar to end the sixth.

The Tigers threatened in the top of the seventh inning after a two out walk by Jeimer Candelario, followed by a single by Jose Iglesias, but were turned away on a nice pick at third base by Miguel Sano, throwing out Nicholas Castellanos, and ending the threat. Wash, rise, repeat in the top of the eighth, meant through eight innings for the Tigers they left 11 men on base and went 2-8 with runners in scoring position.

After a clean seventh inning, Alex Wilson gave up a home run to Rosario to break the tie in the bottom of the eighth inning, giving the Twins the one run lead late. After a walk and an error, Wilson was lifted from the game for Louis Coleman, who wiggled out of the jam courtesy of the double play.

At the end of the day, the end of the game met the expectations of everyone. The Tigers clawed the best they could, but when relying on an already heavily used bullpen, because of a front office gaffe, it’s tough to split a series. The Tigers head back to Detroit for an off day on Monday and a match up with the Chicago Cubs starting Tuesday.