First off I just want to say I’ve never been so happy/relieved to see an Ace. Yes, the pitching calvary arrived with Justin Verlander taking the hill yesterday. Verlander made quick work of the first 3 batters, and you could feel the glee radiating in the D.
Although, that feeling got a little shaky in the second.
We look up and the bases are loaded with no outs. It’s Verlander vs Holt, with the hot hitting Sandy Leon waiting in the wings. Holt hit into a double play, but a man still scored. 1-0 Boston
On the offensive end there wasn’t much to speak of early on, as Chris Sale was dealing! I mean he was borderline dominating. He has this interesting slingshot-esq delivery.
The bulk of this game was a pitching duel between Sale & Verlander. With sale dominating with strikeouts (8 through 6 innings) and pop ups and Verlander getting a lot of pop flies. That all changed in the bottom of the 6th, when Ian Kinsler apparently figured out the code to the Chris Sale conundrum.
He took the first pitch deep over the left field fence. 1-1 tie game, and we got action.
The intensity of the game seemed to have picked up. Pitch by pitch Verlander was clearly trying to pick batters apart. He was surgical in his approach.
In the bottom of the 7th, we got a little bit of action, when Victor Martinez got a base hit. However, he would stay on first base. Tigers batters did do a better job battling at the plate, taking Sale deeper in counts, and forcing him to throw more pitches than he wanted to. Seemingly wearing him down a bit. In the end Martinez was left stranded, and that was the end of Sale’s night (7.2IP 5H 2R 1BB 10SO 1HR).
In the 8th inning Detroit subbed Verlander out (7IP 3H 1R 2BB 4SO) and inserted lefty, Justin Wilson. Wilson got the job done, managing to strikeout a batter in the process. No damage done to the scoreboard.
The fiery Francisco Rodriquez closed things out. Rodriquez sporting a big wad of chew in his mouth, stuck out two batters, and sealed the victory for Detroit.
2-1 Tigers win!
Todays game vs Minnesota will be at 1:10pm. Thank you for reading!