The Tigers had themselves a nice outing against the Reds this afternoon with Reese Olson taking the mound against a general bullpen day (though the last two games already felt like bullpen days given how many relievers the Reds went through).
So, let’s take a look at how things went for the Tigers. Olson had a nice 1-2-3 to start, and in the bottom half the Tigers wasted no time getting on the board. Matt Vierling was hit by a pitch and then stole second. A Kerry Carpenter single managed to score Vierling and the Tigers were up 1-0. The Tigers did successfully challenge an out call at first for Jake Rogers but were not able to take advantage of it.
Olson had another 1-2-3 inning in the second. In the Tigers’ half Javier was able to reach safely on a fielding error from Elly De La Cruz. Matt Vierling was intentionally walked and the Tigers left two men stranded.
De La Cruz got a one-out walk in the top of the third, he stole second, but then got caught stealing third. The Tigers went down in order in the bottom of the inning.
In the fourth, Nick Martini got a one-out walk, and TJ Friedl got a two-out walk, but the Reds left both men stranded. Tyler Nevin singled to start the bottom half of the inning and then an Akil Baddoo home run brought two runs in. Baez singled, and then stole second where he was called out, but the Tigers won the challenge to leave him on the bases (and the Reds’ bench was chirping so much about this they almost got handed an ejection). Tigers up 3-0 at the end of four.
In the fifth De La Cruz got himself another walk, but was once again left on the basepaths. The Tigers went 1-2-3 in the bottom half.
Jake Fraley singled to start the sixth, ending Olson’s nascent no-hitter bid, but a double play off the bat of Nick Martini eliminated them both. Spencer Steer then hit a solo home run to put the Reds on the board before Olson wrapped the inning. That was the end of the day for Olson, who tossed 6.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 4 BB, 7 K, 1 HR on 94 pitches. The Tigers went down in order in their half of the inning.
Jonathan India was able to reach on an error from Javier Baez, but was eliminated by a double play off Joey Votto. In the home half Parker Meadows singled to lead things off, then Zack McKinstry was able to reach on an error from pitcher Ben Lively. Old friend Buck Farmer was next out of the pen for the Reds. A Spencer Torkelson single scored Meadows and put the Tigers up 4-1.
Tyler Holton was next up for the Tigers. He gave up a single to Nick Senzel who was pinch-hitting for Elly De La Cruz. Another pinch-hitter Noelvi Marte, in for Will Benson, singled as well. Holton was removed for Jason Foley when Christian Encarnacion-Strand came in to hit for Nick Martini. But Foley closed out the inning. In the home half Nevin was hit by a pitch. Baddoo singled, and then Parker Meadows got a one-out walk. Matt Vierling then hit his first ever career grand slam, and it was an absolute no-doubter.
POUR IT ON.— Detroit Tigers (@tigers) September 14, 2023
First career grand slam for Matt Vierling! pic.twitter.com/0laN9vi35T
Jose Cisnero was out of the pen to close out the game, but he did manage to keep it interesting. Friedl got a solo home run with one out. They’d need to settle for just that one extra run as the Tigers closed out the rest of the inning.
The Tigers now have flight out of Detroit to Los Angeles, where they’ll take on the Angels this weekend, before moving on to the Dodgers, and finally the Oakland A’s before returning home.
Final: Tigers 8, Reds 2