Detroit Tigers (53-41) vs Cleveland Indians (50-47) — 1:08 p.m. ET
TV: Fox Sports Detroit
Radio: 97.1 The Ticket (click for affiliates)
Weather: 77 degrees, cloudy
When We Last Met
Everything that had gone right for the Detroit Tigers leading up to the All-Star break has gone wrong in the second half’s opening series. The bullpen, which had been surprisingly solid for much of June and July, has hit the kids in the three games in two days against Cleveland. The offense hasn’t helped, scoring 7 runs in the three games. Yesterday, the combination of these two factors led to a pair of 6-2 and 5-2 losses. Joe Nathan allowed three runs in a tied game in the top of the ninth of the night-cap, yet the Tigers are still not willing to move on to another closing option. Brad Ausmus said he was “not at that point” in replacing Nathan. Yep, happy Sunday fans!
Drew Smyly (5-8, 4.00) does not exactly instill much confidence that he will accomplish two things the Tigers need him to do today: win and go deep into the game to rest the bullpen. Smyly got the win in his last outing, but allowed four runs and was backed by 16 runs of support against Kansas City on July 10. That victory was only his third since May 8, going 3-7 in 13 starts over that time. Drew has not pitched through the seventh in a month, and couldn’t get through the sixth inning before tiring in the 16-4 win over the Royals. The lefty picked up a no-decision in a start in Cleveland earlier this year, allowing seven hits and issuing five walks but limited the damage to three runs.
Josh Tomlin (5-6, 4.21) picked up the win in a wild back-and-forth affair in Cleveland when the Indians came out on top 11-10. Both teams were out of pitchers late in the game, but Tomlin pitched in relief to get the victory. A month later, it was a different story as he lasted just four innings in a start, surrendering five runs on eight hits in the 10-4 Detroit win. He has allowed nine runs over his last two starts, which presents an opportunity for Tigers’ hitters, who still seem to be on vacation. With that said, the Tigers usually like to make stars out of nobodies on the mound, so we’ll see.
Detroit Tigers Lineup
- Austin Jackson-CF
- Ian Kinsler-2B
- Miguel Cabrera-DH
- Victor Martinez-1B
- J.D. Martinez-LF
- Torii Hunter-RF
- Nick Castellanos-3B
- Alex Avila-C
- Andrew Romine-SS
- Pat McCoy — 15-day DL
- Luke Putkonen – Out indefinitely
- Joel Hanrahan – Out indefinitely
- Andy Dirks – 60-day DL
- Jose Iglesias – Out for season
- Bruce Rondon – Out for season