On the day the Tigers honored the fifty year anniversary of the 1968 World Series champion Detroit Tigers squad, Matthew Boyd paid homage to Mickey Lolich as the lefty shut down the Cardinals over seven one-hit innings. Numerous members of the Bless You Boys staff got together with friends and fans of the blog to watch the Tigers beat St. Louis 4-3 and
grab their fourth straight win, and third straight series win.
Wow, that was a thing. (more on that below)
This is the Tigers fourth straight wain, and third straight series win.
Boyd struck out the side in the first inning, and the Tigers pounced early on Cardinals’ starter Jack Flaherty, who struggled with his command in the opening inning, allowing the first three batters to reach, two on walks. With the bases loaded and nobody out, he then uncorked a wild pitch, allowing Jeimer Candelario to easily score the game’s first run. Victor Martinez would follow with a deep drive the the right-centerfield alley, which was caught at the wall, scoring another run.
The Tigers would keep putting pressure on Flaherty in the second, putting two on but not scoring until the fourth inning. With two outs and Flaherty looking like he might have settled in, Victor Reyes reached on a line drive the deflected off the first base bag. Candelario would then work an eight pitch battle that resulted in a soft liner to center that just fell in, and good base running from Reyes on a full count allowed him to score all the way from first, pushing the Tigers lead to 3-0.
Boyd meanwhile flat out abused the Cardinals hitters in the second through fourth innings, allowing just one hit and striking out six more batters. With two outs in the fifth, Cardinals’ center fielder Harrison Bader made a bid for a solo home run but Mikie Mahtook it away with a highlight reel grab at the left field wall.
Boyd would make it into the eighth before Paul DeJong broke up the shutout with a leadoff home run. A walk to the second hitter would end Boyd’s night. His final line was still spectacular. Seven innings, two hits, one run, one walk, and 11 strikeouts. Alex Wilson came on to relieve him in the eighth and got two outs and nearly an inning-ending double play, but the runner beat the throw to first. Wilson would then be lifted for Daniel Stumpf who retired Matt Adams to end the eighth.
The Tigers would threaten in the bottom of the eighth, as Niko Goodrum would walk, and with one out Grayson Greiner would single to put two on, but the threat would be ended thanks to an inning-ending double play.
Shane Greene took the hill in the ninth to protect a two run lead. The lead runner would reach on a tough grounder that Jim Aducci could not field cleanly, but Greene would recover and strike out the next two batters, and then got Marcell Ozuna to fly... (removes Greene from POTG Poll)
...over the left field wall to tie the game at three. Nothing good ever happens after a ninth inning leadoff walk/hit.
In the bottom of the ninth, Reyes picked on Carpenter again, as he led off the inning with a ground ball that kicked off of Carpenter’s glove and got Reyes to second. That would bring up the hero from last night’s game, Candelario, who would draw a walk to put two on with nobody out. Aducci laid down a textbook sacrifice bunt, and then nearly beat the throw, to put two in scoring position with one out. The Cardinals would intentionally walk Nicholas Castellanos, to bring up Martinez. He wouldn’t need to do a thing, as closer Bud Norris would bounce the first pitch to Martinez and allow Reyes scamper home and win the game 4-3.
(sigh of relief)
Who was the Tigers Player of the Game
This poll is closed
Matthew Boyd: 7IP, 1ER, 1BB, 11K
Mikie Mahtook: 0-3, Robbed home run
Victor Reyes: 3-4, 1R