Like many of our friends throughout the SB Nation network, we are simulating the 2020 MLB season with MLB The Show 20. While we are unable to stream the games as they would otherwise be happening, we will try to get ahead of the curve and post about the games on the same day they would have taken place. Or, you know, at least get them back on schedule. Now, onto the recap!
C.J. Cron hit two home runs, the second a three-un shot, to help boost the simulated Detroit Tigers to a 6-3 victory and series sweep over the Arizona Diamondbacks. Daniel Norris worked a six-inning quality start, and Tyler Alexander tossed two scoreless frames in relief for his first career save.
The Tigers were actually out-hit by Arizona in this game, but made up the difference with nine (!) walks against Diamondbacks pitching. Starter Luke Weaver was responsible for five of those, including one that led to Detroit’s first run. Jonathan Schoop led off the second with a walk, Weaver’s second of the game at that time. Clint Frazier followed with a sharp single to left that moved Schoop into scoring position. After a Grayson Greiner fly out, Dawel Lugo sent a double down the right field line that plated Schoop. The Tigers left runners on second and third, however, because making pitchers bad is stupid (especially in a video game).
The Tigers added a run in the top of the third via a Cron solo homer, his first of the game and 17th of the year. But things swung wildly in Arizona’s direction in the fourth, giving the Diamondbacks life in the final game of the series. Weaver walked the bases loaded in the top of the inning, but struck out Cameron Maybin to keep the score at 2-0. Then, in the bottom of the frame, the Diamondbacks hit a pair of homers off Norris to take the lead. Jake Lamb singled with one out, and Ildemaro Vargas followed with a two-run shot, tying the score at 2. Norris retired Carson Kelly for the second out of the frame, but Nick Ahmed followed with a towering blast to left that gave his club the lead.
Things stayed this way for a little while, largely thanks to Mike Leake, who once again came out of the bullpen for Arizona for a few key innings. He fell apart quickly in the seventh, however, and the Tigers took advantage. Miguel Cabrera came on to pinch hit for Norris, and got the rally started with a single to the left field wall. Reyes moved Cabrera up to second with a bloop single of his own, and Cron delivered the big blow with a three-run homer to left, his second of the game. Detroit added a run in the eighth without collecting a hit — walk, walk, deep fly ball, and weak groundout the sequence there, if you’re interested — and the depleted bullpen, led by lefthander Tyler Alexander, worked three quiet innings in relief to clinch the victory for the Tigers.
So, about those standings
The simulated Tigers have nearly caught the Twins in the AL Central before Monday’s off day.
AL Central Standings - MLB The Show Simulation
Check out our full simulation stats here!