The Detroit Tigers’ offense backed up starter Justin Verlander, who had his most impressive outing as of late, as the team worked to beat the Colorado Rockies 4-2 and take the first of the three game set.
Verlander was on his game, and though he didn’t give up any hits through the first two innings, he was getting hit hard and deep. He settled down though and while he gave up a double in the third and singles in the fourth and fifth, he didn’t get into any serious trouble until the seventh. In the seventh, after singles by Justin Morneau and Brandon Barnes, a ground out by Drew Stubbs that advanced the runners, and a single by Wilin Rosario that scored Morneau, Castellanos took a grounder off the bat of Josh Rutledge and threw home instead of going for the sure out at second, and Bryan Holaday was unable to make the tag on Barnes before he slid his foot across home plate to bring the Rockies within a run. Verlander showed signs of being Justin Verlander former MVP and Cy Young winner and struck out both DJ LeMahieu and Charlie Blackmon to end the inning. Verlander was back out to pitch the eighth. He gave up a one out double to Nolan Arenado, but did not allow him to score and closed out the inning.
Joe Nathan pitched the ninth and gave up a one out single and a two out walk to put the tying run on base, but was able to hold off the Rockies and earn the save. Rajai Davis was moved to left field and Ezequiel Carrera was brought in as a defensive replacement, with J.D. Martinez leaving the game.
The Detroit Tigers’ bats were quiet until the fifth inning, when Holaday singled with one out, Eugenio Suarez doubled to advance him to third and both scored when Davis singled to give the Tigers a 2-0 lead. Ian Kinsler doubled in the next at bat, scoring Davis from first and extending the lead.
After Verlander gave up two runs in the seventh, the Tigers’ were able to gain one back in the bottom of the inning, when Davis singled, Cabrera walked and Victor Martinez brought one more run in on a single that scored Davis. The added insurance run was good but unnecessary, as the pitchers were able to lock it down and close out the game.
The Tigers and Rockies meet at Comerica Park again tomorrow at 7:08pm.