The 3rd edition of My Tigers Weekly finds the Tigers playing familiar 2018 foes, Baltimore and Pittsburgh, on the road. Both teams have already come through Detroit this season. It’s always harder to win on the road. Incredible hitting performances were mixed in with poor pitching and overall offensive struggles. They lost both series 1-2, finishing their road trip 2-4 for an 11-15 record on the season.
The Tigers got off to a good start in Pittsburgh. Despite yet another postponed game to start the series, the bats were still hot from the previous week. In the makeup game Detroit scored 13 runs off 20 hits against Pirates pitching. The 2-3-4 part of the order of Jeimer Candelario, Miguel Cabrera, and Nick Castellanos, combined for 11 hits in 17 AB’s with 2 HR’s, 4 doubles, 10 runs scored and 7 RBI’s. Daniel Stumpf picked up his first career win with 1 1/3 innings of hitless relief in the 13-10 victory. Unfortunately, the Tigers would only score another 3 runs over the next 2 games. A 3 run home run in the 2nd inning left starter Matthew Boyd with his second loss of the season. The Pirates would end up scoring again late and finished with a 8-3 win to split the doubleheader. The rubber match was a pitchers duel between Michael Fullmer and Ivan Nova. Fullmer struck out 9 in 6 innings of work. Alex Wilson came on in the 9th and gave up a home run to Corey Dickerson. Although it appeared as if a fan may have reached out and interfered, it was ruled a home run and Wilson took his third loss of the season as the Tigers lost by a final score of 1-0.
#Tigers bats combine for 20 hits and four home runs to take Game 1 of doubleheader from Pirates.
— Detroit Tigers (@tigers) April 26, 2018
Game 22: Recap
Game 23: Recap
The Tigers then played a 3 game set in Baltimore. The Orioles came into this series on a 5 game losing streak. Unfortunately, that just meant that they were due for better results. Former All-Star Chris Tillman limited the Tigers to 2 walks and 2 hits; a single from both Nick Castellanos and Jose Iglesias. Mike Fiers gave up home runs to Manny Machado and Pedro Alvarez, and Alvarez made it a 2 home run night off reliever Johnny Barbato. The Tigers fought back in the middle game behind a quality start from Francisco Liriano (6 1/3 innings and 3 ER), who improved to 3-1. The hero of the evening was Miguel Cabrera. His 5 RBI night powered the Tigers offense as he finished with 3 hits, including a home run and double, and a walk in 5 plate appearances. Victor Martinez’ second home run of the season punctuated the 9-5 victory.
Game 24: Recap
.@MiguelCabrera drives in five runs, finishes a triple shy of the cycle to power us past the Orioles.
— Detroit Tigers (@tigers) April 29, 2018
The offensive onslaught would not continue into Sunday. Orioles starter Kevin Gausman outdueled Daniel Norris. Norris gave up home runs to Trey Mancini and Pedro Alvarez before being pulled in the 3rd inning. A pair of doubles by Jeimer Candelario and Niko Goodrum in the 7th off Brad Brach pulled the Tigers within a run, but Pedro Alvarez’ second home run of the day and 4th of the series (both 2 HR games) put the Orioles ahead by the final score of 5-3.
Game 25: Recap
The Tigers return home for a 3 game series against the red hot Tampa Bay Rays, who have won 8 of their last 10 games. The Tigers are only 5-8 away from Comerica Park, but get a chance to improve their road record against Kansas City and Texas. The Tigers start with a 4 game series in Kansas City, where the Royals are 3-12. Then it’s 3 games against a Rangers team that, at the time of this edition of My Tigers Weekly, is barely better at 4-12. These are winnable games that a team that wants to make a push must take full advantage of.