Detroit Tigers Steal Win to Take Series in Oakland
By Matt St Jean
It’s been an interesting 24 hours for Detroit Tigers management. In the end, they made it work and the Tigers figured out a win. They finished up their series in Oakland this afternoon by winning 3-2, taking the series after only scoring four runs in three contests.
Here’s how it unfolded: Mid-way through Tuesday Night’s 1-0 win vs the Oakland Athletics, today’s probable starter, Alfredo Simon, left on an emergency flight back to the Dominican Republic to be with his ailing father. The timetable on his return remains uncertain.
This left General Manager Dave Dombrowski and Manager Brad Ausmus with some scrambling to do, in very short time. In the end, they made the decision to call up lefthander Kyle Ryan from AAA Toledo.
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Not a big deal if the Tigers were at home and Ryan was actually in Toledo. Instead, Ryan was in Louisville and the Tigers faced the A’s in Oakland this afternoon. Traveling issues caused Ryan to arrive in California around 11AM Pacific Time, making his 1230 start time unfeasible.
Insert Probable Starter #3 on the day for the Tigers, Mr. Do Everything Alex Wilson. Although pitching Sunday & Monday, Wilson was called on yet again to eat up key innings in a desperate situation.
Wilson was again fantastic. Not allowing a hit over three innings and allowing only one base runner, he was removed for the Probable Starter #2, Ryan, who made it to the ballpark and was able to relieve Wilson.
Ryan has had a rough year in AAA, going 0-5 with a 4.67 ERA and only 31 K’s. Fortunately, he didnt have much time to think about those numbers, and was strong when he came in the game in the fourth. He allowed only three hits in three innings of work, and walked away with the win after a Yoenis Cespedes three run home run in the fifth.
Cespedes was moved up in the lineup to cleanup to protect Miguel Cabrera, and it ended up being the difference the Tigers needed to get the W.
One of those runners who scored on the Cespedes home run, was struggling second baseman Ian Kinsler, who snapped an 0-22 streak with a double two batters previously.
The Cespedes home run came off of A’s reliever Dan Otero, because starter Scott Kazmir was forced to leave after three innings with shoulder tightness. Both starters in today’s rubber-match left the game with no hitters.
Ryan got the opportunity to go back out fot the seventh inning, but only lasted one batter as A’s leading slugger Stephen Vogt hit a triple of a poorly played ball in right. Al Alburquerque came in and allowed Vogt to score on a sac fly, and struck out two. Alburquerque has now lowered his ERA significantly to a 4.15
The A’s other run came the following inning after another triple by Marcus Semien, who scored on a ground ball out the next batter, making the score 3-2
After getting a four out save last night, Closer Joakim Soria put two base runners on to start the ninth, making Tigers fans breathe heavy. But, in a bit of dramatic fashion, Soria struck out the final two batters for his fifteenth save of the year.
Thursday the Tigers continue their West Coast trip in Los Angeles as they play the Angels. Getting his first start of the season for the Tigers is Buck Farmer, who has been stellar so far this year in Toledo. He comes in at 5-1 with a 2.98 ERA in the minors. He will face C.J. Wilson, who is 2-3 with a 3.36 ERA. The game begins at 10:05 PM EST.