“A Few Bumps Along The Way”

Christain Corey, Sports Writer

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Although the Tigers got the season off to a relatively “hot start,” they would soon come back down to earth once their division rival came into town, the Cleveland Indians.  Prior to the second home series of the year the young Tiger team was looking good.  They opened their season with a split in Toronto and came away with a series win in New York.  They came to Detroit for some home cooking and came away with a sweep against the Royals. 

Then their struggles would start.  In game one of the Clevland series the Tiger pitching got jumped on by the Indians bats.  On the second pitch of the game the former Tiger Leonys Martin took Tigers ace Jordan Zimmermann deep to right field getting the Indians on the board early 1-0.  However, the scoring wouldn’t stop there for the Tribe.  With the game tied at one, second baseman Brad Miller would hit a 2-run shot giving the Indians a 3-1 lead.   

The Indians would go onto hit two more homeruns in that game, with their 3rd coming from catcher Roberto Perez and their 4th coming from their center fielder Jake Bauers giving the Indians a 6-2 advantage.  The final score of that game would be 8-2 in favor of Clevland as the Tigers could not stop the Indian bats.  

The Tigers would go onto win game 2 of the series behind the solid pitching of Matthew Boyd.  Boyd would go six strong innings by only giving up 1 run on 4 hits to the Indians.  The Tigers bats would also come alive a bit by putting up a total of 4 runs in that contest.  Three of the four Tiger runs would come from the homerun ball.  The first two would come from Niko Goodrum’s bat, when he hit a two-run shot to right giving the Tigers a 2-0 lead.  The next run for Detroit would come from catcher John Hicks.  Hicks would hit a solo-homerun to left giving the Tigers a 3-1 lead.  The final score of game two of the series would be 4-1 Detroit.  

In the third and final game of the series the Tiger’s bats would be cold once again.  They could not find an answer to Indians starting pitcher, Shane Bieber. Bieber would throw 7 scoreless innings against Detroit, allowing only 3 hits. The Indians would win the final game of the series 4-0, securing a series win against Detroit.  

After Sunday’s loss to the Indians the Tigers had to look forward to a quick turnaround as they had to face the Minnesota Twins in the frigid temperatures of Minnesota.  Luckily, for Detroit, mother nature sent a rare spring snow storm to the great state of Minnesota which dropped anywhere from 5 to 12 inches.  The only hope for the Tigers was that those inches could convert to runs for them on Saturday.  (They will make up the game on May the 11th at 2:10 P.M. as part of a 2-game double header in Minnesota.) 

 

On Saturday the Tigers would get the scoring started in the 3rd. with a sacrifice fly from their second baseman Josh Harrison, which scored Grayson Greiner from third base giving Detroit an early 1-0 lead.  Two batters later Jeimer Candelario would smack an RBI single to center, which scored Jordy Mercer from second.  Extending Detroit’s lead 2-0.  

However, in the bottom half of the 3rd inning it would be the Twins turn to get some runs.  Their young stud, Byron Buxton would hit an RBI single to left field which scored second baseman Johnathan Schoop cutting Detroit’s lead down to one (2-1). 

Later in the bottom of the 3rd with the game tied a 2 the Twins left fielder Eddie Rosario would slap a 2-RBI single to right, which scored Byron Buxton and Max Kepler giving the Twins their first lead of the day, 4-2.  

However, the Tigers would try to battle back in the 6th with a solo homerun from their rookie outfielder Christin Stewart cutting Minnesota’s lead down to one (4-3).  However, in the end the Twins would come out victorious winning the game by the score of 4-3.  

In the final game of the series against Minnesota, the Tigers would send their ace Jordan Zimmermann to the mound to face the Twins bats.  Those Twins would get to Zimmermann early on an Eddie Rosario RBI single to center field, which scored right fielder Max Kepler giving the Twins an early 1-0 lead.   

Four batters later with runners on 1st and 2nd C.J. Cron would ground out to the Tigers second baseman Ronny Rodriguez scoring Nelson Cruz from third base, extending the Twins lead to two.  

However, just a half an inning later in the top of the 2nd inning the Tigers would get those two runs back on one swing of the bat from Gordon Beckham.  Beckham would launch a 2-run homerun to the bullpen in left field tying the game up at 2.  

The game wouldn’t be tied for long.  With the Twins holding onto a one run lead (3-2), C.J. Cron would step up to the plate once again for the Twins.  This time Cron would hit a laser out of the ball park to left field, extending the Twins lead 5-2.  Four innings later Minnesota would get the long ball working again.  This time it would come off the bat of Eddie Rosario.  Rosario would launch a solo homerun into the bleachers out into right-center field, making the game 6-2 in favor of Minnesota.  

Even with the Tigers down by four, Detroit wouldn’t go away quietly.  In the Tigers half of the 8th inning, Christin Stewart would hit a line drive double down the right field line.  Jeimer Candelario would score from second cutting the Twins lead in half (6-3).  Two batters later the Tigers catcher Grayson Greiner would reach on an infield single to third base, Miguel Cabrera would score from third making the game 6-4 Twins. 

In the top of the 9th inning the Tigers would load the bases down by two runs.  With two men out Grayson Greiner would have to face Minnesota’s Trevor HildenbergerHildenberger would get the count to 1 ball and 2 strikes on the Tiger catcher.  Hildenberger would eventually get Greiner to strike out swinging on a high 93 mph. fastball to end the game a secure a series win for the Twins.  

 As you can see not only the weather was cold in Minnesota, but the Tiger bats were as well.  The Tigers will come home on Tuesday to start a short interleague series agent the Pittsburgh Pirates.  First pitch will be at 6:40 p.m.