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Detroit Tigers Pitcher of the Week (8/8-8/14): Matt Boyd

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Aug 6, 2016; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Matt Boyd (48) pitches in the second inning against the New York Mets at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 6, 2016; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Matt Boyd (48) pitches in the second inning against the New York Mets at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports /
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Detroit Tigers pitchers turned in some superb starts last week. There were certainly a number of choices, but Matt Boyd stood out with a dominating turn on the road against the high-powered Texas Rangers.

Detroit Tigers fans witnessed a number of excellent pitching displays over the last week. Justin Verlander was excellent in Seattle, while Michael Fulmer notched his first career complete-game shutout. Even Anibal Sanchez got in on the action in one of his two starts, out dueling the Mets’ Jacob deGrom.

However, Matt Boyd separated himself from the pack with a dominating display against the Rangers.

In seven innings, the Oregon State product held Texas to just two hits and a pair of walks while striking out three. He was also incredibly efficient needing just 99 pitches to get through his seven frames of work.

What’s more, Boyd showed off his slider, which was extremely successful against Texas. It helped keep the likes of Ian Desmond, Carlos Beltran and Rougned Odor off balance while displaying wipeout capabilities.

In addition to pitching a gem in Arlington, the former Blue Jay also logged an inning in relief earlier in the week against the Mariners.

Boyd pitched a scoreless 14th inning, striking out a batter while also walking one. During the outing he induced four swinging strikes, which is significant when you consider he managed six in his masterpiece versus the Rangers.

All told, in his eight innings of work last week, Boyd didn’t allow a run while only letting five base runners reach base. Taking his three walks and two hits into account, that totals out to a .080 batting average and a .179 on-base percentage against. Opponents only managed a paltry .299 OPS against the 25-year-old.

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Boyd Over Fulmer

While Fulmer’s complete-game masterpiece on Sunday was undoubtedly the better of the two starts, Boyd’s was much more significant. We’ve seen brilliance from Fulmer for much of his young Major League career, while Boyd has taken time to adjust.

The Washington native posted a 6.57 ERA in 50.2 innings down the stretch in 2015 after joining the Tigers in the David Price blockbuster. Additionally, he was roughed up in a handful of early starts this season. In consecutive starts in mid-June, the starter was teed off on by the White Sox and Royals, allowing a combined 15 hits, 13 runs, two home runs and two walks in just eight innings.

However, since rejoining the Tigers rotation in early July, Boyd has been a different pitcher. His performance against the Rangers only served as yet another example of the fact.

Since the beginning of July, the left-hander owns a miniscule 2.16 ERA, and has held batters to a .198 batting average.

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Considering his recent success and a 2.25 ERA at Triple-A, it’s obvious that Boyd is turning a corner for the Detroit Tigers. With a future rotation that includes the likes of Boyd, Fulmer, Daniel Norris, Matt Manning, Beau Burrows and Kyle Funkhouser, the future is certainly bright in Motown.

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