Swags has another multi HR game but the Tigers walk-off Cards 5-3 in game-one, scoring 4 unanswered
Two lefties battled it out tonight in the Motor City, Austin Gomber and Daniel Norris, both surrendering 3 runs before handing it over to their bullpens.
Cardinals Early Runs:
Daniel Norris had the strikeout pitch working tonight, fanning 7 Cardinals thru his first 4 innings of work. Carp and Muñoz opened the game with back-to-back k’s before Cafecíto grounded out to end the inning after 11 pitches. The Cardinals would yield only 3 hits thru the first 4 frames, two coming from Swags, both being the run-scoring variety. Swags sent two solo HRs, one to leadoff the 2nd and the other leading off the 4th to put the Birds on the board.
Swags got NChill and I some much needed #bombsaway points. I’m trying to clinch the crown early guys, my apologies.
The Cards would plate their 3rd run in Norris’ final inning of work in the 5th, getting things started with an opposite field double from KoWo (making his first start since coming off the DL). Mahtook slide on the play, looking like Skip Schumaker Opening Night in 2007 vs the Mets, completely whiffing on the sliding catch attempt. With Peña batting, Norris would balk, moving Wong to 3B. Peña then drove in his 8th RBI of the season with a sac-fly to Mahtook in LF.
Austin the Big-G Gomber:
Big-G opened his evening giving up back-to-back singles to Candelario and Goodrum. He then got Castellanos to fly out to Muñoz, moving Candelario to 3B to put runners on the corners for the veteran DH, Victor Martinez. Martinez grounded into his 18th double-play of the season, going 6-4-3 on the putout. The Tigers would get on the board to tie the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the second, as Mahtook worked a leadoff walk. Gomber then punched out his first of 6, getting McCann on a heater. Rodriguez then doubled into the LF corner to put runners in scoring position for Lugo. Swags had a good throw back into the cutoff man DeJong on the play, forcing Mahtook to stay out at 3B. Lugo would drive him in with a ground out to Wong, tying things at 1-1.
Big-G turned in his finest two innings of his outing in the 3rd and 4th, retiring the side in order in both innings, throwing a total of 15 pitches; Candelario strikeout looking at a fantastic bender, Goodrum ground out, Castellanos ground out, Martinez line out, Mahtook pop out, and McCann fly out.
After the Cardinals plated KoWo to take a 3-1 lead, the Tigers would claw back to tie it at 3 in the 5th. Oh, and get this, it was with two outs (go figure). Bader took away extra bases from Rodriguez to open the inning, ranging far back into CF for the first out. Lugo then went down fanning at a curveball for out number two. Reyes then reached with a perfectly placed bunt single down the 1B line. Candelario followed that with a single into RF, Goodrum walking to load the bases next. The Tigers biggest offensive threat, Castellanos, came thru when it mattered most. Castellanos would hit a shallow two-run single into LF, scoring Reyes and Candelario, tying the game at 3-3.
The Final Outcome:
The Cardinals would only muster two more base hits before tonight’s game ended. The first being the most promising, a single into LF from Harry Bader. Wong moved Bader into scoring position with a sac-bunt to bring in Peña (kinda confusing). Bader would swipe his 14th bag of the year, sliding in to 3B before the throw and tag beat him there. Stumpf ended the inning, striking out Peña before getting Carp to ground into the shift, stranding Bader at 3B.
Dominic Leone pitched a very eventful bottom of the 7th, coming into the game after Big-G walked Lugo to open the inning. The speedy Reyes came up next, bunting a ball to the 3B side, Leone fielding it and throwing it over Carp’s head at 1B. KoWo saved the Cardinals rear ends though, backing up the play to perfection, diving to stop the ball from going any further. Leone made sure to have KoWo’s back the way KoWo had his, fanning back-to-back batters (Candelario and Goodrum). After falling behind 2-0 on Castellanos, the Cardinals would put him on for free to load the bases for Martinez. What happened next was unbelievable. I mean seriously. How many times does Kolten have to make plays like this that leave you jumping around your house like a 10 year-old kid on Christmas morning? Wong saved the game, AGAIN. Diving deep in the RF hole to his left to take away a sure two-run single from Martinez to escape the jam.
Jordan Hicks worked the final two innings, tossing a perfect 8th inning, throwing 9 pitches. Jordan came in firing darts, looking very calm and collected, but what’s new? Mahtook got toyed with to begin the 8th, seeing sinkers at 103 mph before getting that lethal 88 mph slider on the outer half to freeze him. McCann then popped out to KoWo and Rodriguez grounded out to Pauly Deez. Hicks would go back out to the mound for the 9th, striking out Lugo looking at a low sinker. Hicks fell behind Lugo 3-0 before throwing him 3-straight strikes to send him packing. Reyes then slapped a one-out single into LF bringing in the leadoff man, Candelario. Candelario ended the game on a high sinker, sending his 18th HR of the season oppo taco for the 5-3 Tigers win. In 70IP, that was only the 2nd HR given up by Hicks this season, so cap tip to Candelario and the Cardinals will get ‘em back tomorrow.
Jack Flaherty (8-6, 2.83) looks for revenge in game-two as he is matched up with another lefty, Matthew Boyd* (9-12, 4.24). First pitch from Comerica Park 5:10 c/t.
Thanks for reading, cheers!
Game 141 is in the books