New York 6, Detroit 2 (box)
The game was supposed to be a big time pitchers duel. Two of the American League’s top pitchers, Justin Verlander and C.C. Sabathia, were set to square off, but the game didn’t start out in favor of either pitcher.
Austin Jackson lead off the game by drilling Sabathia’s first offering, a fastball, over the left field fence. It wasn’t a good start for the Yankee’s ace, but C.C. escaped the inning without further damage thanks to a couple fantastic catches by center fielder Curtis Granderson.
Justin Verlander took the hill in the bottom of the inning and quickly ran into some trouble of his own. Two walks and two hits lead to two quick Yankee runs, but Justin was able to avoid a complete meltdown by inducing a double play off the bat of former teammate Marcus Thames. The Yanks would get on the board again in the second inning courtesy of a Curtis Granderson solo home run.
Unfortunately for the Tigers, Sabathia’s struggles ended in the first inning, and Justin’s pitch count would prevent him from finding his groove. Justin exited after only five innings with his team trailing 3-1. We all knew Justin needed to go deep into this game for the Tigers to have a shot at winning; his early exit seemed to seal the team’s fate.
Daniel Schlereth came in to start the sixth inning, but didn’t fare well. With a mixture of bad luck and one bad pitch (a homer served up to Robinson Cano), Schlereth allowed three runs in 1.1 innings of work. Oddly enough, he didn’t allow any walks (but he did hit a batter), and all four outs were recorded via the strikeout.
The Tigers added their second, and final, run in the seventh inning on a Brandon Inge solo homer. Detroit had four opportunities to hit with runners in scoring position, but could not convert in any of them.
It’s tough to win games when you only score twice, and it’s tough to win when you give up six. It’s even tougher when you do both on the same night.