== Detroit outmuscles Seattle in series opener ==
The Tigers have Justin Verlander, and Miguel Cabrera, and Victor Martinez …
Seattle had the return of Endy Chavez.
That’s not entirely fair, since the M’s did have the usually ultra-reliable Hisashi Iwakuma.
But the Mariners were without Robinson Cano, and actually put up a decent fight against Verlander with Endy, James Jones, and the rest of the supporting cast.
They couldn’t keep up with the Detroit crew, however, especially when Kuma gave up longballs to both Miggy (two-run shot) and V-Mart (three-run shot).
It looks from the charts like Kuma wasn’t getting quite the usual vertical bite on his splitter/shuuto, and when the Tigers are sending some of the best hitters around up to the plate, they’re going to catch up with his 90 mph stuff.
Kudos to the M’s bunch for hanging around, mostly due to Kyle Seager’s two-run homer. He also added a double.
But this is a supporting cast without a star when Cano is out, and with Corey Hart not likely to be back for awhile, Cano is what we’ve got. So pitchers: ball’s in your court.
- Hyper-detailed baseball-reference.com boxscore here.
Why Endy Chavez? It turns out he had a clause in his minor-league deal that if he wasn’t called up by June 1, then he could opt out.
And with Brandon Maurer being sent down and Cano out for a couple of days, they needed someone. So the timing was right, and it gives them a few days to figure out if they want to let him opt out, I suppose.
Chavez is pretty much a replacement-level player: won’t help much, won’t hurt much.
So no offensive salvation.
Nick Franklin was at least a possible partial offensive salvation. He had been kicking it in AAA.
But: .143/.194/.143 since returning.
That’s not really enticing the Mets to give up one of their pitching prospects either.
- Tacoma went to the 12th before falling to Salt Lake. Ty Kelly did just about everything he could to help, with a single, a double, a home run and a walk.
- Jackson got shut down good, with only one General getting an extra-base hit. It was Ketel Marte with a double.
- High Desert, however, went on an offensive tear, which it needed to pull out a 9-8 win. Jordy Lara pulled into the organizational lead in homers with his 11th, and Gabriel Guerrero added his 7th. Not-that-Burt Reynolds joined in with his 2nd at High Desert and 6th overall. And D.J. Peterson didn’t get into the homer category, but he had two doubles and a single.
- Clinton was in the no-offense category, but it got an interesting performance (despite the loss) from Brazilian reliever Thyago Vieira: 2.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB 6 K.