MLB Team Report - Detroit Tigers - INSIDE PITCH
DETROIT -- David Price doesn’t have a lot of room for error in his first home start with the Detroit Tigers.
Price, who was acquired from Tampa Bay on July 31 in a blockbuster three-team deal, will oppose the heavy favorite for the American League Cy Young Award, Seattle’s Felix Hernandez, in the second game of a three-game series on Saturday. Hernandez is riding a major-league record streak of 16 consecutive starts of at least seven innings pitched while allowing two earned runs or less.
“That’s phenomenal,” Price said Friday of Hernandez’s streak.
“Facing a guy like Felix, you have to be right that day. If you give up three runs in seven or eight innings, you’re probably going to lose. You can’t give up crooked numbers. You’ve got to come ready and that’s what I’ll be tomorrow.”
Price, who is 11-8 with a 3.21 ERA, has two no-decisions since the trade. He pitched 8 2/3 innings at Yankee Stadium in his Tigers debut, allowing three earned runs and striking out 10. He pitched at Toronto in his last start on Sunday, giving up four runs in six innings with six strikeouts.
“I‘m anxious to see what it feels like to make a home start in front of these fans,” he said. “I‘m always excited to be living my dream. I‘m a little bit nervous before every game and I don’t think it will be any different tomorrow.”
The acquisition of Price looks even more essential to the Tigers’ playoff push in light of recent developments. Anibal Sanchez went on the disabled list with a major right pectoralis strain and isn’t expected to return until next month. Justin Verlander is dealing with shoulder soreness and will skip at least one start. Their replacements were rookies called up from Triple A, Robbie Ray and Buck Farmer.
Price has found the mood in the Tigers clubhouse to be lighthearted despite the team’s recent struggles.
“They’re laid back and fun to be around and to me, that’s the key,” he said. “If you can have fun, it never turns into a job. That’s what you want to stay away from. You want to continue to treat the game the way you did when we were kids and fell in love with it.”
MLB Team Report - Detroit Tigers - NOTES, QUOTES
STREAK: Lost one
NEXT: Mariners (RHP Felix Hernandez, 12-3, 1.95 ERA) at Tigers (LHP David Price, 11-8, 3.21 ERA)
--RHP Rick Porcello had one of his worst starts of the season on Friday, allowing six runs -- five earned -- on 10 hits in six innings. Porcello elevated too many pitches and couldn’t make the in-game adjustments to change his fortunes. He made a rare relief appearance in the 19-inning game at Toronto on Sunday, tossing two-plus innings, but said that had nothing to do with his poor performance on Friday. “I’ve got a lot of adjustments to make,” he said. “I look forward to my next start.”
--1B Miguel Cabrera doubled in his first two at-bats on Friday, giving him an American League-leading 39 for the season. He has nine games with at least two extra-base hits. He smacked his first double since July 19 in his last at-bat on Thursday. Cabrera also walked and scored a run against Seattle.
--RHP Justin Verlander will not pick up a ball until Tuesday, manager Brad Ausmus announced on Friday. Verlander experienced shoulder soreness in his pitching arm and lasted just one inning against Pittsburgh on Monday. An MRI on Tuesday revealed no structural damage. Ausmus is hopeful Verlander can throw a bullpen session during the middle of next week. Verlander has not been placed on the disabled list.
--LF Andy Dirks will restart his rehab assignment at Triple A Toledo on Saturday. Dirks’ rehab has been halted twice, first with soreness in his surgically-repaired back and then by a hamstring strain. Dirks, who has been out since spring training, took batting practice with the Mud Hens on Friday without any issues. The Tigers are hopeful of activating Dirks later this month if he doesn’t have another setback.
--RHP Max Scherzer will make his next start on Tuesday, manager Brad Ausmus said Friday. The Tigers are off Monday, allowing them to use Scherzer on his usual four days’ rest without the need of a fifth starter. While notching his 14th win against Pittsburgh on Thursday, Scherzer became the second pitcher in Tigers history to go at least eight shutout innings while allowing three hits or less and striking out at least 14. Mickey Lolich was the only other Detroit pitcher to do that in -- against Milwaukee on Aug. 23, 1970.
--RHP Melvin Mercedes tossed two scoreless innings in his major league debut out of the bullpen on Friday. Mercedes, who was called up from Triple-A Toledo on Thursday, did not allow a base runner while striking out two batters. Mercedes’ performance was surprising, given that he had a 4.33 ERA and struck out just 27 in 52 innings with the Mud Hens. The outing may have extended his stay in the big leagues.
QUOTE TO NOTE: “I was up in the zone the whole night. I didn’t make the proper adjustments to get the ball down. I just didn’t pitch well at all. I put us out of the game early and we were just never able to recover.” -- RHP Rick Porcello, the losing pitcher Friday night to Seattle.
MLB Team Report - Detroit Tigers - ROSTER REPORT
--RHP Justin Verlander (right shoulder soreness) left the Aug. 11 game after one inning. He underwent an MRI exam Aug. 12 that showed inflammation but no structural damage. He is not expected to be placed on the disabled list, though he is will miss his scheduled start Aug. 17. He will not resume throwing until at least Aug. 19.
--RHP Anibal Sanchez (right pectoralis major strain) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to Aug. 9. He is out until at least early September.
--RHP Joakim Soria (left oblique strain) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to Aug. 10. He is out until at least early September.
--LF Andy Dirks (lower back surgery in March 2014) went on the 15-day disabled list March 29, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on April 21. He was cleared to resume light baseball activity May 2. He was throwing and taking dry swings as of May 10, and he was running again as of June 3. As of June 12, Dirks was hitting off a tee, doing soft-toss batting drills and running bases. He began a rehab assignment with Class A Lakeland on July 8. Dirks’ rehab assignment was halted July 16 because of muscular soreness. He started a new rehab assignment with Class A West Michigan on Aug. 1 but left the Aug. 5 game with a left hamstring injury. He is expected to restart his rehab assignment with Triple-A Toledo on Aug. 16.
--RHP Joel Hanrahan (Tommy John surgery in May 2013) went on the 15-day disabled list May 2, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on July 19. He was throwing off the mound and playing long toss as of May 24. After a slight hamstring setback, he was only playing long toss from about 120 feet in mid-June. He threw a 25-pitch bullpen session July 5.
--RHP Luke Putkonen (right elbow inflammation) went on the 15-day disabled list on April 21, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on June 22. He began a rehab assignment with Class-A West Michigan on May 7, and he moved his rehab to Triple-A Toledo on May 9. His rehab assignment was halted in mid-May, and he underwent surgery to shave down the bone in his right elbow on June 13.
--RHP Bruce Rondon (Tommy John surgery in March 2014) went on the 60-day disabled list March 29. He is out for the season.
--SS Jose Iglesias (stress fractures in both shins) went on the 60-day disabled list March 29. He was declared out for the season by GM Dave Dombrowski on June 4.
RHP Max Scherzer
RHP Justin Verlander
LHP David Price
RHP Rick Porcello
LHP Robbie Ray
RHP Joe Nathan (closer)
RHP Joba Chamberlain
RHP Al Alburquerque
LHP Phil Coke
LHP Ian Krol
LHP Blane Hardy
RHP Melvin Mercedes
1B Miguel Cabrera
2B Ian Kinsler
SS Eugenio Suarez
3B Nick Castellanos
DH Victor Martinez
INF Don Kelly
INF Andrew Romine
LF J.D. Martinez
CF Rajai Davis
RF Torii Hunter
OF Ezequiel Carrera