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Detroit Tigers vs. Astros: The Bad & the Ugly Game Recap

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Apr 15, 2016; Houston, TX, USA; Detroit Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler (bottom) is tagged out by Houston Astros third baseman Luis Valbuena (top) during the first inning at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 15, 2016; Houston, TX, USA; Detroit Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler (bottom) is tagged out by Houston Astros third baseman Luis Valbuena (top) during the first inning at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Friday night Detroit Tigers vs. Houston Astros game was a nailbiter, but not in a good way. Dallas Keuchel (2-1) got his first home win against an extremely lucky Mike Pelfrey (0-2). 

Detroit Tigers
Apr 15, 2016; Houston, TX, USA; Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Mike Pelfrey reacts after a play during the second inning against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports /

The highlight of the game was the end of the game when the final out was made and the whole thing was O.V.E.R.

Pelfrey definitely earned the loss. Of the 104 pitches he threw, only 57 of them were strikes. He walked 6 of the 26 batters he faced and only struck out 3. It was a clinic on what NOT to do as a pitcher.

Keuchel held the Tigers to five hits, allowed one walk, and had four strikeouts. Even though both pitchers had five hits, there was nothing else that Keuchel and Pelfrey had in common. Keuchel pitched brilliantly and Pelfrey…well, he did not.

If it weren’t for the men behind Pelfrey, the game would have been completely different. The fact that the Tigers held the Astros to only one run was pure magic. In fact, Tigers fans Tweeting about the game commented on his ability to escape the loaded bases without any damage. 

Of course, there is no reason to panic. The Tigers will recover from the loss and they will win more games, but Pelfrey is a liability to the team. Six walks is unacceptable for an MLB pitcher, so is his pitch-to-strike ratio: only 57.8% of his pitches were strikes. Keuchel threw 108 pitches and 72 were strikes: 66.6%. 

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The score of the game cannot be totally blamed on Pelfrey. While the defense prevented an inflated score, the offense could not get the job done. The five hits were from Ian Kinsler, Justin Upton, Miguel Cabrera, J.D. Martinez, and Nick Castellanos. They were solid hits, but no one could follow through to get the runners to score. Like the number of walks Pelfrey allowed, the lack of runs is also unacceptable, especially when the defense worked so hard to prevent runs from happening. Even the baserunning was sub-par, like Kinsler’s attempt to get a triple out in the first inning. That moment seemed to set the tone for the rest of the game. 

If the MLB At-Bat app can be believed, the ump had an overly tight strike zone. Many of the pitches he threw looked like strikes on the app, but were called balls during the game. But, a good player cannot blame the ump for a win or a loss.

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As a baseball fan, I thoroughly enjoy watching games; but, this one was incredibly boring. I found Pelfrey painful to watch and the rest of the men on the field did not offer much for fans either. It just seemed like the men were in survival mode rather than winning mode. When the fans show more spirit on social media than the team does on the field, it is a dull game. Fans need more.

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