So, another really poor start from Marco Estrada. Or a terrible start of a start.
His first inning started walk, single, double, then two sac flies to tie the score at 3 after we got 3 runs in the top of the inning.
After another walk, John Gibbons came out to talk to Marco and, whatever it was he said, it seemed to help Marco, because he got out of the inning and then pitched 2 scoreless innings.
Marco gave up another run, in the fourth inning, but that was wasn’t so much his fault. A gentle fly fell between Jose Bautista and Kevin Pillar, one of them should have caught it, a “double”. Then a deep fly to left, to the wall, that went into and out of Ezequiel Carrera’s glove, for another double and an earned run.
Estrada followed that up with two strikeouts, but a 2-out walk ended his day. In total 3.2 innings, 5 hits (2 that shouldn’t have been hits), 4 earned, 4 walks and 5 strikeouts. I’m hoping the good, aggressive pitching he showed us after the first, is what we’ll see in his next start.
Offensively, we had a pretty good day, until the Tigers bullpen came into the game.
We scored 3 in the first: A 2-out Josh Donaldson single was followed by back-to-back homers from Justin Smoak and Kendrys Morales.
And 2 more in the sixth: A leadoff Ryan Goins single, followed by a Jose Bautista homer, which put us in front again.
All off starter Anibal Sanchez.
Against the Tigers pen we had 1 hit in 5 innings.
Our bullpen did a nice job (1.1 scoreless from Ryan Tepera and 2 scoreless from Jose Biagini), until Danny Barnes gave up a game tying homer in the bottom of the 8th. The ball just barely cleared the fence in right field. They had to review to be sure.
Danny was back out for the bottom of the ninth and got the first two outs, then Roberto Osuna came in and gave up a long long, but thankfully foul ball, to Justin Upton, before getting him out and getting us into extras.
Our defense was particularly awful. The misplays in the outfield mentioned above, plus a bad error by Troy Tulowitzki on an easy grounder and a hard hit ground ball that went right through Kendrys Morales. And, in that first inning, Donaldson made a great stop on a grounder at third but then tried to make the out at first, a bad idea, that allowed the runner at second to move up. Add in a couple of poor throws from the outfield and you have a bad day defensively. Josh also had a error at a bad moment in the 11th (though it was a tough play). It ended up costing us the game.
In the top of the 10th, Steve Pearce started us with a ground ball single. I wished for a pinch runner, but Russell Martin was the last guy on the bench. Donaldson replaced him with a force out. Justin Smoak struck out. Morales was hit by pitch, on a 2-2 pitch. But Tulo struck out looking for the 3rd time today. And each time he argued and each time it was clearly a strike.
Osuna gave up a 1-out walk, to J.D. Martinez, who stole second, but then was stranded there.
In the 11th. Miguel Montero made decent contact, but lined it right at the left fielder. He had good contact earlier in the game, pulling a ball down the right field line, right into the corner, but foul. Other than that, he didn’t hit anything decent, going 0 for 5. Pillar got to a 3-0 at bat, but popped out on his 3-1 pitch. Darwin Barney ground out.
In the bottom of the inning Jeff Beliveau took over for Osuana. He gave up a leadoff walk to Alan Avila (after being up 0-2). A sac bunt later, Beliveau out, Lucas Harrell in. Tough spot for Harrell, 1-out winning run at second. He got a line out to Morales at first base. Then Nick Castellanos hit a soft roller to Donaldson (right over the bag), Josh bobbled the ball on the transfer and was given an error (I’m not sure if that was a fair call or not). A walk to Justin Upton loaded the bases, bringing up Miguel Cabrera. I would have much preferred grooving one to Upton.
Harrell walked Cabrera to lose it for us. It was a bad spot for Harrell, but, if you want to stay in the majors, you gotta throw strikes.
Jays of the Day: Biagini (.197 WPA), Osuna (.175), Tepera (.116) and Morales (.105). I’d take it away from Morales for that error, but he made a nice catch on a line drive in the 11th.
Suckage: Harrell (-.300, not fair really, it was a tough spot for him), Estrada (-.246), Montero (-.161), Tulo (-.146), Donaldson (-.132 plus the error) and Pillar (-.120).
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