It seemed as if the Tigers season could not have gotten off to a better start than Monday's 4-0 victory over the Twins. Today, it got even better with an 11-0 thrashing of the same Twins. According to Baseball-Reference.com, this is the first time the Tigers have ever started a season withe two shutouts. That's going back to 1901. So, I guess it really does not get better than this unless they pitch a third straight shutout, something that has only been done by the 1963 St. Louis Cardinals.
The Tigers 15-hit attack was led by some unexpected heroes. Light-hitting ninth place hitter Jose Iglesias led the way with four hits while speedy lead-off hitter Anthony Gose chipped in with three. The most remarkable thing about the offense may have been the bottom two hitters reaching base all five times they came to the plate. Iglesias added a walk to his hit parade, eighth place hitter Alex Avila reached base four times on a hit and three walks scoring four times and pinch hitter James McCann also reached base on a single.
The pitching came from starter Anibal Sanchez - six strikeouts and just three hits in 6 2/3 innings -and four relievers. The final reliever was right hander Joakim Soria who retired the one batter to end the game. Why did they bring in Soria to pitch to just one batter in an 11-0 game? It could have been to get him some work or it could have been to get him accustomed to closing games...
Beacause the biggest news of the day was closer Joe Nathan going on the disabled list with a flexor muscle strain. Manager Ausmus announced shortly after the game that Soria is the new closer. That solves one big problem: Not having Nathan trying to close games. There is still the issue of lack of bullpen depth, but most of wanted Nathan out and Soria in, so that's a start.