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Rays 6, Tigers 1: Tigers only score once, drop rubber match

In spite of scoring early, the Tigers bats remained largely silent.

Tampa Bay Rays v Detroit Tigers Photo by Dave Reginek/Getty Images

The Tigers lost the rubber match in their three-game home series against the Tampa Bay Rays today, 6-1. At least they didn’t get shut out?

The game was tied 1-1 after the first inning, as Brandon Dixon managed to knock in Nicholas Castellanos, who reached base with his 20th double of the year. The Rays had scored one run off of Norris in the first before stranding two baserunners to end the inning. Unfortunately, the Tigers bats fell silent shortly thereafter. Meanwhile, the Rays managed 14 hits off Tigers pitching and pounced on the bullpen in the eighth inning with home runs from Willy Adames and Trevor d’Arnaud — who had two home runs in the game. Simple enough.

Let’s talk Daniel Norris. Entering today, Daniel Norris had allowed six runs in two of his last four starts. Today was much better for Norris than those starts in terms of results (three earned runs and coming one out away from a quality start), but his struggles were still on full display. Norris allowed eleven hits and one walk across five-and-two-thirds innings. The six strikeouts were encouraging, yes, but Norris once again allowed a home run. Norris has now allowed at least one home run in six consecutive starts. Thankfully, he got out of trouble multiple times today, as the twelve baserunners were the most Norris has allowed to reach base in this six-game stretch. Nevertheless, Norris has a problem with the long ball, and if it isn’t fixed, it’s hard to see him as having a future in the Tigers rotation.

Besides that, there isn’t much else to be said. The Tigers did make contact off the Rays, the eight hits they did manage to get off of the Rays ragtag group of pitchers.

The Good

JaCoby Jones extended his hitting streak to 12 games, while Brandon Dixon went 2-for-3 with the only Tigers RBI of the day.

The Bad

The Tigers six-through-eight hitters combined for zero hits (to be fair to Harold Castro, he did notch a hit and a walk pinch-hitting for Dawel Lugo). Grayson Greiner, who now sports a .175 batting average, was batting .135 with a .470 OPS in his past 15 games, but it’s safe to assume that those numbers dropped even further after today’s game.

The Ugly

Daniel Stumpf allowed two home runs in the eighth inning, allowing three runs while notching just two outs. The outing ballooned his ERA from 2.51 to 4.20.

On Deck

The Tigers take on the Twins in a three-game home series this weekend. Tigers ace Matthew Boyd will take the mound Friday night against a to-be-determined Twins pitcher.