Twins Thump Tigers to Regain Division Lead


Detroit 4, Minnesota 11 (box)

Armando Galarraga has some trouble with left handed batters. That’s no way to live when facing the Minnesota Twins. Galarraga fell to 1-6 career versus the Twins with the loss tonight. In 4+ innings, he allowed six runs on seven hits and two walks. It was the walks that really hurt him. Or all the triples… maybe both I guess.

With the game tied at three in the bottom of the fourth, Galarraga retired the first batter of the frame, then fell behind and issued a walk to Jim Thome. One batter later, now with two away, Galarraga walked Nick Punto, which is done entirely too often by Tigers pitchers, setting the stage for Denard Span to come through with his second of three triples he would hit in this game.

When Galarraga was lifted after a lead-off single in the fifth, the floodgates really opened up. Fu-Te Ni was no relief as he issued four walks and allowed four runs all without surviving the inning. (…)

I know there has been some talk about not wanting to call up Dan Schlereth because he walks too many guys in AAA, but Ni is already doing that in Detroit. If I’m gonna have the walks to deal with, I may as well have the strikeouts, too. Ni doesn’t give me those, Schlereth does. Let’s make a switch there.

Like I said, at that point the game was basically over. Thome would connect again for his 493rd career home run versus Detroit, or something close to that anyway. Punto ended up walking twice in this game. Basically you didn’t need to see any other stat and you would have known what had happened. If the Tigers are too afraid to attack the strike zone when Punto is hitting, you can imagine what good hitters did when those pitchers fell behind.

The Tigers loss drops them back to second place, just a half game back of the Twins with a chance to reclaim the lead tomorrow afternoon. This will be a big game for the Tigers, they have a chance, with a win, to head home at 4-5 on their road trip. That sounds a helluva lot better than 3-6. Plus, it always feels better when you head into the off-day on a positive note.

Tags: Armando Galarraga Denard Span Detroit Tigers Fu-Te Ni Minnesota Twins Nick Punto