Saturday, April 21, 2007

Tigers Lose Third Straight

The Tigers lost to the White Sox 7-5 in 10 innings today for their third consecutive loss. There were some familiar themes. First (or actually last), their bullpen failed them again. Joel Zumaya allowed only his second run of the year to allow chicago to tie the game at 5 in the 8th. Fernando Rodney then allowed two runs, one of them earned, in the 10th to lose it. Rodney has now allowed runs in 5 of 8 appearances and has a 7.58 ERA in 8 innings pitched.

They got off to a good start offensively with a grandslam by Carlos Guillen in the first inning, the fourth Tiger slam of the year already. However, they managed just one run on three hits the rest of the way with the usual suspects not coming through. Continuing their month long slumps by going hitless on the day were Gary Sheffield (now batting .119), Sean Casey (.158), Craig Monroe (.186) and Brandon Inge (.115).

Bullpen and batting woes are nothing new to the Tigers right now but today their usually steady defense also had problems. They made three errors on the day and failed to turn double plays on two consecutive grounders contributing to a 3 run 4th. Inge, Guillen and Nate Robertson were all charged with errors in the game. The Robertson error occurred on a bizarre play in the 5th. With a runner on first, Robertson removed his cap in between pitches as if he was taking a brief break and then suddenly fired to first base. Casey was unprepared for the throw and it went over his head. It was as if they were back in the 2006 World Series again.

Robertson pitched pretty well but the poor fielding support hurt him. He allowed 4 runs, 3 earned, on 5 hits and 2 walks in 6 2/3 innings. He now has a 2.39 ERA in 26 1/3 innings of work on the season.

TheTigers will try to salvage one game of this three game series tomorrow afternoon at 1:05. It will be Justin Verlander versus Jon Garland.

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