Max Scherzer improved his record to 14-1 tonight as the Tigers beat Chris Sale and the White Sox 7-3.
There was a lot to like about tonight’s game, not the least of which, is that the Tigers beat White Sox ace, and arguably the best pitcher in the American League this year, Chris Sale.
True, the Tigers were helped by three White Sox errors but good teams make other teams pay for giving them extra outs. Additionally, the Tigers who had a hard time scoring after the sixth inning before the break, scored one in the seventh and three in the ninth to seal the deal.
Both pitchers pitched well. Scherzer went 8 innings, allowed four hits and two earned runs while striking out 5 and walking none.
Sale pitched 8 innings as well, he allowed 4 runs but only 2 of them were earned. He struck out 11 and walked 3.
The Tigers bullpen was pretty good tonight as well. Phil Coke came on to start the ninth and got Alejandro De Aza to ground out to second base. That was the only batter he’d face as Jim Leyland brought in Bruce Rondon to relieve Coke with one out.
Rondon got Alexei Ramirez to ground to short for the second out but then had a hiccup. He allowed a double to Alex Rios. Rios took third on a wild pitch and scored on a balk. But Rondon struck out Adam Dunn to end the game and give the Tigers the first game of the series.
Victor Martinez continued his torrid pace with 4 more hits and 3 RBIs raising his batting average to .270.
Torii Hunter had two hits including a solo shot off of Sale in the 7th.
The big concern is the health of Miguel Cabrera. As I wrote yesterday, something seemed amiss with the reigning AL MVP, and apparently there is. It looks like he has a back/hip injury. Let’s hope it’s nothing serious.
On another note, I like the way Leyland is using Phil Coke. It looks like he’s just using him for 1 or 2 hitters to hopefully get his rhythm and confidence back. Let’s hope the recent success continues.
“God, I love baseball.” – Roy Hobbs | The Natural