Strong pitching performances ruled the day just a few miles from the Magic Kingdom on Sunday afternoon as the Detroit Tigers and Atlanta Braves ended their game in a scoreless tie at Champions Field in Walt Disney World. While there is no set rule for extra innings in Spring Training, if the ninth ends in a tie, they usually play one more inning to decide the contest and call it if there is no winner through 10 innings.
Playing each other for the third time in the first five days of Grapefruit League play, seven Detroit pitchers and eight Atlanta hurlers limited the offensive action to seven Tigers’ hits and six for the Braves.
Anibal Sanchez got the start for the Tigers for the first time in the spring and experienced a quiet pair of innings, surrendering one hit and striking out one batter. The last time Sanchez faced the Braves, he mowed down 17 batters and set the Tigers’ franchise mark for strikeouts.
Robbie Ray continued his impressive spring by coming on in relief of Anibal, allowing two hits and a base on balls in two innings of work. Joe Nathan and Joba Chamberlain pitched the fifth and sixth respectively. Joba was lighting the radar gun at 95 MPH, a tick or two higher than his first action last Thursday, also against the Braves.
On the offensive side of things, Victor Martinez went 2-for-3 to raise his spring average to .455, and not much else went right for the Tigers at the plate. Ian Kinsler, Ezequiel Carrera, Jordan Lennerton, and Danny Worth accounted for the other hits.
- The Tigers are now 3-2-1 in Grapefruit League play (although they don’t keep track of ties in the official standings–not that the overall record matters in Spring Training anyway)
- With the shutout, the Tigers have now gone all six Grapefruit League games without hitting a home run.
- The Braves were playing with a split squad as the other half of their team went to Kissimmee to face the Astros. They lost that game 7-4, and have yet to win a game this spring (0-5-1).
The Tigers return to Lakeland where they’ll face the St. Louis Cardinals tomorrow at 1.