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Mariners 11, Tigers 6: Matthew Boyd, bullpen combine for an epic meltdown

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Home runs sank Boyd and the Tigers despite a strong offensive showing early.

Seattle Mariners v Detroit Tigers Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

The Detroit Tigers and Matthew Boyd started off strong and had things looking good against the Seattle Mariners on Tuesday evening. But a sixth inning meltdown and shoddy outfield play would snatch defeat from the jaws of victory as the Tigers dropped yet another game at Comerica Park, 11-6.

Things started off well for Boyd. He faced just seven batters in two innings with only a walk and a hit against him. But things quickly got worse, starting in the third inning when a two-out single, stolen base, and single gave the Mariners a 1-0 lead. Then in the fourth, after the Tigers had tied the score, Boyd served up back-to-back home runs to Kyle Seager and Tom Murphy, putting the M’s up 2-1.

Boyd then pitched a clean fifth as the Tigers built a big lead, but it all came apart in the sixth. With one out, a routine fly ball to Brandon Dixon was strangely cut off by a charging Niko Goodrum, who could not make the catch. After a walk, Seager again delivered a massive home run to tie the game at six apiece. Then Murphy again followed with a home run of his own to put the Mariners back up by one. Just like that, Boyd’s night was over and he left with a very ugly final line. In 5 13 innings pitched, he gave up seven runs (six earned), two walks, four strikeouts, and four home runs.

Nick Ramirez was called on to relieve Boyd, but was unable to record an out, allowing the Mariners to tack on two more runs on three straight hits. Matt Hall came in and got the final outs of the sixth on a pair of strikeouts with only a walk allowed in between.

What truly made the sixth inning meltdown from Boyd painful was that the Tigers had built a three-run lead, scoring six runs in the first five innings. It started in the third. After the Mariners had just taken a 1-0 lead, Niko Goodrum led off the inning with a double. One out later, Miguel Cabrera doubled Goodrum home to tie the score. Then, down two runs in the bottom of the fourth, John Hicks opened the bottom of the inning with a solo home run. Travis Demeritte singled, then rode home on a Jake Rogers two-run homer, giving the Tigers the lead.

A Dawel Lugo ground-rule double would end the night for Mariners starter Yusei Kikuchi. Zac Grotz relieved Kikuchi and allowed a run to score on a wild pitch, pushing the Tigers’ lead to 5-3 through four innings. Jordy Mercer made it a 6-3 lead with an RBI double in the bottom of the fifth, but the Tigers’ three run lead was soon wiped out by the aforementioned meltdown from Boyd and bullpen.

Things then settled down... until the ninth inning. Matt Hall and Buck Farmer pitched some quality baseball in the seventh and eighth, but things got a little weird for Jose Cisnero. With two outs and one on, Kyle Seager came to the plate and drove a ball to deep left-center field. Dixon and Goodrum converged, collided, and the ball bounceed from the webbing of Goodrum’s glove over the bullpen wall for a two-run home run, Seager’s third of the night. It was a fitting occurrence for this awful season. The Tigers would go quietly in the bottom of the ninth as they drop their third game in a row.

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Who was the Tigers Player of the Game?

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  • 76%
    Jake Rogers
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  • 7%
    John Hicks
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  • 15%
    Travis Demeritte
    (32 votes)
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