I’m just going to get this out of the way early: Joey Wentz is not a reliable big-league pitcher and against any other club, the way he performed today would have resulted in a much more skewed scoreboard. It was just not ideal, and the Tigers are going to need to take a long look at their rotation this postseason and see about finding some new arms.
Wentz was not actually the game’s starter, though he did take the bulk of the innings. Miguel Diaz took the first inning and a third before Wentz came out of the pen. He was up against Joe Boyle for the A’s.
In the first Spencer Torkelson got a two-out single, but was left stranded. In the bottom half Diaz went 1-2-3 with the A’s.
Parker Meadows hit a two-out double in the top of the second, but the Tigers left him on base. Brent Rooker walked to start the bottom half, then one out later, Diaz gave way to Wentz. A Lawrence Butler groundout into a double play eliminate the baserunner and ended the inning.
In the top of the third, Zach McKinstry doubled with one out. Spencer Torkelson then reached on a fielding error, which allowed McKinstry to score, putting the Tigers on the board first. In the A’s half, Nick Allen singled, and then Esteury Ruiz hit a home run to score two.
Onto the fourth an Parker Meadows got a two-out walk, then stole second. The safe call at second was challenged, but the ruling stood. Ultimately it did not matter as the Tigers were not able to score the runner. Seth Brown singled to start the A’s half, then successfully stole second. The A’s were also unable to make their baserunner count.
McKinstry singled in the fifth but was caught stealing. The A’s bats were quiet in the bottom half as they were retired in order.
In the sixth Kerry Carpenter got a one-out single but was unable to score. The A’s once again went 1-2-3.
Carson Kelly got a one-out walk against A’s reliever Lucas Erceg but was the sole Tigers’ baserunner for the inning. Luckily the A’s had a three-up-three-down bottom half.
Dany Jimenez was the next reliever out of the A’s pen. Matt Vierling started things out with a walk and two quick outs followed. Andy Ibanez then also got a walk. A wild pitch allowed the runners to advance, and then Andre Lipcius also walked to load up the bases. Alas a third strikeout left the three runners stranded and the best chance the Tigers had to win this game probably just went down the drain.
Wentz gave way to Jason Foley for the bottom of the eighth. Nick Allen got a one-out walk. Esteury Ruiz then singled, and while Zack Short didn’t catch the liner, he did stop it from going into center and likely kept Allen from getting to third. Ryan Noda doubled to score Allen, and then Zack Gelof singled to score Ruiz. A double play ended the inning but the damage was definitely done.
Carson Kelly walked to start the ninth. McKinstry reached on a fielding error, and then Vierling singled to load the bases with one out. And once again the Tigers left them loaded to end the game in truly miserable fashion.
Final: A’s 4, Tigers 1