For a while, this game was a pitcher’s duel. In the first three innings, there were just two baserunners: Nicholas Castellanos tried to pounce on John Gant early with a two-out double, and Dawel Lugo drew a walk (if you do not keep close track of the farm system, that is not a common occurrence). Michael Fulmer came out of the gate with five perfect innings. Alas, his later-inning struggles continued today.
The sixth inning was the first real trouble spot for Fulmer. He walked Yairo Munoz to start the inning, ending the chance for a perfect game, but James McCann promptly threw him out stealing. Fulmer then walked Greg Garcia and allowed a single to Carson Kelly. With National League MVP candidate Matt Carpenter and Jose Martinez next to bat, Fulmer geared in and got two outs on three pitches.
While Fulmer was able to escape trouble in the sixth inning, the wheels came off in the seventh. He appeared to be geared in when he struck out Matt Adams, but immediately allowed three consecutive singles to Marcell Ozuna, Paul DeJong, and Kolten Wong. Wong’s single gave the Cardinals a 1-0 lead, but the Cardinals were not done, as Yairo Munoz knocked a sacrifice fly to make it 2-0, Greg Garcia was intentionally walked, and Carson Kelly singled to make it 3-0 That was it for Michael Fulmer, but the Cardinals were still not done, as Matt Carpenter knocked a sacrifice fly and Jose Martinez singled off of Victor Alcantara to give the Cardinals a 5-0 lead. Fulmer finished with a final line of six-and-a-third innings, five hits, five runs (three earned), three walks, and five strikeouts.
The biggest bright spot of the day was the great play of Nicholas Castellanos, who knocked a double in the first inning, launched a ground-rule double in the seventh inning, and walked in the eighth inning. Other than that, this was not a fun one.
Christin Stewart made his major-league debut pinch-hitting with two out and nobody on in the ninth inning. He popped out to end the game.
Who was the Tigers’ player of the game?
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