Detroit 9, Kansas City 1 (box)
Rick Porcello‘s previous start was one he would probably like to forget. In five innings he surrendered six runs and took the loss in New York. Since then, the Tiger starting pitchers have been nothing short of fantastic. Armando Galarraga, Max Scherzer, Justin Verlander, and Jeremy Bonderman all gave stellar performances in turn. The quartet averaged seven innings and only one earned run over the four game stretch. I’m sure Rick was anxious to turn in a gem of his own in order to make up for his last outing.
The game started out pretty easy for Rick. Gregor Blanco lead off the game by taking a called third strike while stepping out of the batters box. Blanco was asking for time, but Rick had started his windup and Jim Reynolds, the home plate umpire, did not grant his request.
Porcello really wouldn’t face any fire the entire game. He retired the first twelve Royals of the game, before yielding a leadoff single to professional hitter Billy Butler in the fifth. The next three Royals would go down in order, and Butler would be left stranded on first.
The Royals did manage get one runner into scoring position against the Tigers’ starter. A Chris Getz single and a Blanco walk in the sixth inning brought Jason Kendall to the plate with two on, and one out. Porcello induced a ground ball double play, and the Royals only threat was ended before it began.
Kansas City would finally get on the board with a two-out solo home run in the ninth off the bat of Kila Ka’aihue. It was the second home run of the promising young Hawaiian’s career.
On the offensive side of things, the Tigers had the bats going all evening long. Austin Jackson lead off the Tigers’ half of the first inning with an infield hit. A stolen base, a Will Rhymes sacrifice bunt (the most overrated play in baseball), and a Miguel Cabrera sacrifice fly later, the Tigers had the game’s first run.
They would add to the run total with two runs in the fourth, four in the fifth, and two more in the sixth inning. That’s way to many runs for me to detail, but it was a lot of fun to watch. I like it when the Tigers score lots of runs and hardly let the opponent score any.
Every Tiger starter had at least one hit, and everyone reached base at least twice, except Brandon Inge. I’ll give Inge a pass though; his single in the fourth was the 1,000th hit of his career. That’s a nice milestone, especially for a guy who isn’t especially known for his batting average.
The win means the Tigers have clawed their way back to .500, and the addition of a Minnesota loss means the Tigers are back to single digits in the dreaded GB column of the standings. I’m not saying the Tigers are going to magically get back in the division race, but I’m telling you there’s a chance.