Should the Detroit Tigers be worried about their pitching after giving up 23 runs in three games versus the New York Yankees? Yes, probably. But for now, they’ll likely be happy that they salvaged a win in their season-opening series at Yankee Stadium.
The Tigers finally brought out some heavy artillery Sunday afternoon to match the Yankees’ onslaught. Miguel Cabrera carried the biggest stick, clubbing two home runs and driving in four runs. (He batted 3-for-5 on the day.)
Brennan Boesch also had an excellent day at the plate, batting in the third spot in front of Cabrera. Playing as the DH, Boesch went 4-for-4 with a homer and four RBIs. Ramon Santiago and Don Kelly drove in the other runs for Detroit, while Jhonny Peralta batted 3-for-4.
But, oh, that pitching. Max Scherzer was roughed up by the Yankees’ lineup in his first start of the season. Pitching five innings, Scherzer gave up six runs on nine hits. Four of those hits were home runs. Jorge Posada hit two off Scherzer, while Mark Teixeira (so much for starting slow in April) and Robinson Cano also went deep for the Yankees.
Fortunately for the Tigers, Phil Hughes was equally as bad on the mound. He served up both of Cabrera’s homers and allowed five runs in just four innings of work. Even worse, however, was Bartolo Colon. Pitching in the majors for the first time since 2009, the Tigers welcomed him back to the bigs by lighting him up for four runs and six hits over four innings.
Joaquin Benoit and Jose Valverde restored some order to the game by pitching like the shutdown relievers many expect them to be. Each threw one inning of scoreless baseball, with Benoit allowing one hit. Valverde earned his first save of the season.
The Tigers travel to Baltimore to begin a three-game series tomorrow. First pitch is at 3:05 p.m. After an off-day on Tuesday, they’ll resume the series with two more games at Camden Yards before heading back to Detroit for the home opener on Friday.