The Detroit Tigers jumped out to an early 6-0 lead against the New York Yankees in Wednesday’s Grapefruit League exhibition matchup, but they couldn’t hold the lead as the Bronx Bombers came all the way back to tie up the game in the bottom of the ninth inning.
The Tigers put up a four-spot in the first inning off of starting pitcher Hiroki Kuroda. Ian Kinsler led off with a base hit up the middle and scored on the next play thanks to a Don Kelly single and a Kelly Johnson error. Victor Martinez plated the second run with a sacrifice fly. Alex Avila and Trevor Crowe singled on both sides of a Tyler Collins fly out, and both came home on Nick Castellanos’ double to right-center field. The inning ended when Castellanos was thrown out at the plate on a Bryan Holaday single.
Detroit starter Anibal Sanchez followed with two perfect innings – two strikeouts, no walks, no hits – and then the Tigers offense struck again with two runs in the top of the third. Detroit placed runners two runners in scoring position via a Victor Martinez single and a Tyler Collins double, and both were driven home on a line drive double off the bat of Trevor Crowe, giving the Tigers a 6-0 lead.
Sanchez’s only blemish came in the bottom of the third inning when he allowed a leadoff home run to Francisco Cervelli. He retired the next three batters on consecutive groundouts and then got through the fourth inning unscathed after allowing a pair of singles (and striking out one batter).
Sanchez’s final line: 4 IP, 1 ER, 3 SO, 0 BB, 3 H, 1 HR.
New York would tack on another run in the bottom of the fifth inning – another leadoff home run by Cervelli, this time off of reliever Evan Reed – and then three more runs in the eighth inning off of lefty Ian Krol to cut the Tigers’ lead to 6-5.
Hernan Perez reached third base in the ninth inning after drawing a walk, taking second on a passed ball, and advancing on a Devon Travis groundout, and came in to score after Jordan Lennerton bounced into a fielder’s choice.
The 7-5 advantage wouldn’t hold, however, as Zoilo Almonte belted a two-run homer off of Jose Ortega to even the score and force extra innings. Neither side could push across a run in the tenth inning, and the game ended in a 7-7 tie.
Notable Batting Lines
- Nick Castellanos: 2-4, two doubles
- Tyler Collins: 2-5, two doubles
- Alex Avila: 2-4, two singles
- Victor Martinez: 1-3, single
- Ian Kinsler: 1-4, single
- Hernan Perez: 1-3, single and a walk
Notable Pitching Lines
- Anibal Sanchez: 4 IP, 1 ER, 3 SO, 0 BB, 3 H, 1 HR
- Evan Reed: 2 IP, 1 ER, 3 SO, 0 BB, 1 H, 1 HR
- Luke Putkonen: 1 IP, 0 ER, 0 SO, 0 BB, 1 H
- Ian Krol: 1 IP, 3 ER, 0 SO, 1 BB, 4 H
- Jose Ortega: 1 IP, 2 ER, 0 SO, 1 BB, 2 H, 1 HR