Detroit Tigers News

Detroit Tigers: Four Things to Know vs Pittsburgh

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Apr 12, 2016; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers left fielder Justin Upton (8) receives congratulations from first baseman Miguel Cabrera (24) after he hits a home run in the first inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 12, 2016; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers left fielder Justin Upton (8) receives congratulations from first baseman Miguel Cabrera (24) after he hits a home run in the first inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports /
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Mar 14, 2016; Fort Myers, FL, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher Ryan Vogelsong (14) throws a pitch during the first inning against the Boston Red Sox at JetBlue Park. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 14, 2016; Fort Myers, FL, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher Ryan Vogelsong (14) throws a pitch during the first inning against the Boston Red Sox at JetBlue Park. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /

Ryan Vogelsong Will Start

Originally, the Pirates were set to send out Francisco Liriano as the team’s starter for the game. However, as Bill Brink of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports, Liriano was scratched due to “discomfort in his right hamstring.”

Instead, former San Francisco Giants starting pitcher Ryan Vogelsong will start the game.

Vogelsong, who is pitching out of the bullpen this season, has made just one appearance. During the appearance, the veteran allowed a hit, two runs and two walks in two innings against the Reds.

The matchup is a better one for the Tigers simply because the team avoids having to face Liriano, who has been excellent since donning a Pittsburgh uniform. Since the start of the 2013 season, the former Twin has 3.25 ERA and 556 strikeouts in 521.1 innings pitched. His FIP (3.27) and WAR (7.6) during the same time period are similarly outstanding.

While Vogelsong has only pitched once against Detroit, a number of Tigers have posted favorable numbers against the 38-year-old. Miguel Cabrera, J.D. Martinez, Victor Martinez and Justin Upton are all hitting at least .280 lifetime against the former Giant. While Victor Martinez will be relegated to pinch-hitting duties, this is a good sign for a Detroit offense that will look to continue the offensive hot stream that started with Tuesday’s win over the Pirates.

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