Tigers Use Seven-Run Sixth to Steamroll Royals


Kansas City 3, Detroit 12 (box)

The news of the afternoon was the claiming of Johnny Damon, the news of the evening was the Tigers offense.

Tigers starter Jeremy Bonderman did what he does and got off to a rough opening frame, but his teammates picked him up with a solid first inning of their own. Royals lefty Bruce Chen managed to get out of the first by getting a double-play ball to end the innings, but it took him 29 pitches, and it didn’t happen until he had already allowed two runs.

Both starters settled in a bit, though neither was great for the next few innings. Chen in particular, continued to struggle with command.

When the Tigers came to bat in the fifth, holding a 3-2 lead, the leash was short on Chen, but the Tigers made him pay for mistakes in the zone. Will Rhymes opened the inning with a double to right center, moving to third when Mitch Maier mishandled the ball. After Damon struck out, Miguel Cabrera was walked intentionally and Chen was removed in favor of right hander Jesse Chavez.

Chavez was greeted by Ryan Raburn, who slammed the first pitch he saw into left for an RBI double. Two batters later, Brandon Inge added to the lead with a sacrifice fly to right.

Then, the floodgates opened in the sixth.


With Chavez still working, Austin Jackson worked a one-out walk. Rhymes followed with a single, then so did Damon, bringing home a run. With first base open (thanks to another Maier error), Cabrera was again given a free pass and again Raburn came through, this time driving in a pair with a single. Jhonny Peralta knocked in another run with a bas hit and Inge doubled to bring home two more. Seven straight Tigers reached against Chavez before he was finally lifted from the game. Gerald Laird capped the scoring for Detroit later in the inning with a run-scoring single of his own.

All told this was an enjoyable game to watch. Bonderman has shaky at best, just as he has been a lot this year, but it was an improvement over his past few outings. Part of that is because he was pitching at home, but most of that is because the Royals don’t have the same type of lineup that Bonderman faced in Chicago or New York.

The offense pounded out 12 hits to go along with 10 walks leading to their 12 run effort. It would have been worse if not for a couple of standout defensive plays by the left side of the Kansas City infield.

Cheers for (haven’t done these in a while)

  • Ryan Raburn– He drove in three runs with his three hit night, earning him the fan vote for Player of the Game. Raburn made the Royals pay for walking Cabrera as each of his three RBI came after a Cabrera walk.
  • Jhonny Peralta– Jhonny went 2-for-2 and walked twice, he also knocked in three.
  • Austin Jackson– AJax was 0-for-2 but collected three walks, driving his OBP to .360 on the season. He doesn’t seem like a rookie.
  • Will Rhymes– Yet another multi-hit game for Rhymes, I wonder if Carlos Guillen still has a job when he comes back. It would be awfully tough to take at bats away from this guy.