My Detroit Sports: My Tigers Weekly #13

In the 13th edition of My Tigers Weekly we go through the road struggles of the Tigers and a special retirement ceremony for 2018 Hall of Fame inductee Jack Morris. Mike Fiers was traded to the A’s as the August 31st waiver deadline approaches. And while they say you can’t come home again, apparently that’s only true for former Tigers draft pick Jacob Turner.

The Tigers started with a difficult 6 game road trip to the West coast. Against the streaking Oakland A’s, neither team could score in the opener. The teams combined for 13 hits in 13 innings, but A’s rookie Ramon Laureano picked up his first career hit with a walk off single with 2 on and 2 out in the bottom of the 13th. The second game was a pitchers duel between Jordan Zimmerman and former Tiger Edwin Jackson. A pair of A’s home runs in the 3rd was the difference as the Tigers fell 2-1. Getaway day was no better for the Tigers. Francisco Liriano gave up 2 runs in 5 innings, but the Tigers could only manage 5 hits and went 0-5 with runners in scoring position as they fell 6-0. The A’s swept the season series 7-0.

Game 107: Recap

Game 108: Recap

Game 109: Recap

Things didn’t get better in Anaheim. The Tigers scored 8 total runs over the 6 game road trip. The Angels swept the Tigers with the 3 wins coming by a combined 23-7 margin.

Game 110: Recap

Game 111: Recap

Game 112: Recap

The Tigers then came home for a 6 game homestand. Although the Tigers could only manage 4 hits against Ervin Santana, who was fresh off the disabled list, those hits were timely and for extra bases. Niko Goodrum and Jose Iglesias each hit 2 run home runs and JaCoby Jones was brought home after a triple. Jordan Zimmerman gave up 2 unearned runs as the Tigers won the opener, 5-3.

The offense remained cold on Saturday. Francisco Liriano was outdueled by Kyle Gibson in another 5 inning start. Niko Goodrum hit a 2 run home run in the 9th inning to bring the Tigers to within a run, but ultimately fell 4-3.

Game 114: Recap

The rubber match was an emotional one with Jack Morris getting his number retired at Comerica Park. It is fitting that the ceremony came against Minnesota. Although Jack is closely associated with the 1984 Tigers, he also split his career and success with the Twins. He currently serves as a broadcaster for Minnesota and was thus honored in a touching ceremony. Matthew Boyd tried his best to honor Jack Morris with a strong 6 inning, 2 hit, 1 earned run start. The offense came alive in the 5th inning, although the Tigers drove in 2 of their runs without a hit. Niko Goodrum drew a bases loaded walk and Victor Martinez hit a sacrifice fly as the Tigers took the lead. Ronny Rodriguez hit a RBI double after coming in for the injured JaCoby Jones to give the Tigers an insurance run they wouldn’t need as they won 4-2.

The homestand continued against the Chicago White Sox. Monday’s game was all about Nick Castellanos. He had 5 hits, including a home run and a pair of doubles, plus 5 RBI’s as the Tigers muscled their way past the White Sox. Louis Coleman picked up the win as the pitcher of record when Castellanos hit his 2 run home run in the 7th. The Tigers won the game 9-5 and Coleman improved to 4-1 on the season.

The second game looked like it would be another slugfest, as both teams put up 3 runs in the 1st inning. White Sox outfielder Ryan LaMarre, a Royal Oak native and University of Michigan alum, hit his first career home run in the 2nd inning. The Tigers couldn’t put another run across the board and ultimately fell 6-3.

Game 117: Recap

The rubber match was a duel between Jordan Zimmerman and Chicago prospect Carlos Rodon. The Tigers went ahead 3-2 on a RBI singles from Jose Iglesias and Nick Castellanos. But Zimmerman did not have his best stuff. He gave up a pair of home runs to Matt Davidson and Jose Abreu on his way to a 6 earned run outing. The Tigers made a valiant effort to rally in the 9th. Castellanos and Niko Goodrum greeted Jeanmar Gomez with a walk and infield single. After striking out McCann, Victor Martinez was brought in to pinch hit. To make it a lefty versus lefty matchup, Chicago brought in Luis Avilan. Martinez won the matchup by promptly singling to right and loading the bases. But the Tigers could only manage an RBI groundout and RBI single before falling 6-5.

Game 118: Recap

The Tigers then went to Minnesota to play a 4 series against the Twins. Francisco Liriano and Ervin Santana combined for 5 2/3rd innings and 15 earned runs. Liriano gave up 8 runs in 1 2/3rd innings, but 5 runs across the 4th and 5th innings made it an 8-7 game. But the Twins struck back with 7 runs on 7 hits and a walk against Zach McAllister and Alex Wilson to blow the game open. Niko Goodrum hit a solo home run for the final score of 15-8.

Game 119: Recap

In the second game, it looked like Matthew Boyd would have his second strong start in a row. The Tigers lead 3-0 entering the 6th, but a solo home run put the Twins on the board. Boyd started the 7th off by striking out Miguel Sano before giving up his second solo home run of the evening to Tyler Austin. After a single and hit by pitch, Louis Coleman came in to face pinch hitter Joe Mauer. Mauer’s 3 run home run put the Twins ahead. Once again the Tigers tried to rally in the 9th with Victor Martinez’ leadoff double leading to a run, but it wasn’t enough as the Tigers fell 5-4.

Game 120: Recap

On Saturday Ryan Carpenter picked up his first career win. He worked his way around 8 hits and 3 solo home runs to give up 3 earned runs 5 1/3rd innings. The Tigers could only manage 2 RBI hits and 6 hits overall, but drew 6 walks and made their hits count with a 3 run home run by Mikie Mahtook and a 2 RBI double by Ronnie Rodriguez. Managing to score runs on a hit by pitch and throwing error proved to be the difference as the Tigers won 7-5.

Sunday’s game was a matchup between Buck Farmer and Jake Odorizzi. The Tigers had intended for former pick Jacob Turner to start, but he had to remain in Toledo as the 10 day period after being optioned to the minors had not yet passed. Therefore, Buck Farmer took the roster spot that opened up after Zach McAllister was designated for assignment. Farmer was taken out of the game after giving up 2 runs in the 3rd inning. It became a battle of the bullpens in the 6th when the Tigers loaded the bases against Jake Odorizzi on a leadoff double and two walks. Niko Goodrum drew a RBI walk, but a run scoring double play limited the threat. Adduci brought in another run on a single to tie the game before Mahtook struck out to end the inning. But the Twins would pull ahead on a leadoff home run by Eddie Rosario off of Alex Wilson to start the 8th, and despite getting 2 on with 1 out in the 9th, the Tigers couldn’t manufacture a run and fell 5-4.

Game 122: Recap

At this point in the season, the Tigers are in 3rd place in the AL Central, but closer to the bottom than the top. They are more than 20 games behind the Indians and 9 behind the Twins while only 4 games ahead of the Chicago White Sox. This may not be a bad thing. Currently there are only 5 teams in baseball with worse records. After a sustained period of success, it takes time to restock the farm system. Parting with veterans for prospects and acquiring a top draft pick is a good way to return to winning ways. At the same time, the Tigers have done a good job of giving playing time to young players to see who will be around and contribute the next time they’re ready to contend for a playoff spot. Losing one run games is vexing, but the competitive spirit and perseverance will eventually pay off. In the meantime, the Tigers come home for a 6 game homestand against all Chicago opponents. It’ll be a 2 game interleague series against the Cubs followed by a 4 game series against the White Sox culminating in Alan Trammell’s retirement ceremony on Sunday.

Congratulations to Tigers fan, Gabriella Shafer (@gabe_shaferr), the winner of the My Tigers Weekly ‘Fans of the Week’ giveaway! She won an autographed photo of Hall-of-Famer, Jack Morris!

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Stay sharp Tigers fans and represent the D at Comerica Park! Our next giveaway will be an autographed photo of James McCann!

JAMES_MCCANN

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