Tuesday, April 23, 2024
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MLB Preview: Detroit Tigers (16-19) at Cleveland Guardians (17-19)

DETROIT TIGERS NOTES:

TIGERS SHUT OUT BY CLEVELAND, 2-0: The Tigers were blanked by the Guardians 2-0 on Tuesday. Detroit had at least one baserunner in every inning, but were unable to get a run across. Akil Baddoo and Spencer Torkelson each had three hits. Michael Lorenzen was excellent on the mound, but took the loss, allowing a run on five hits with no walks and three strikeouts in 7.0 innings.

GREENE MEANS GO: Riley Greene reached base three times in last night’s game, going 1×3 with two walks and a stolen base. Greene has hit safely in 12 of his last 13 games, slashing .353/.411/.471 with three doubles, a home run and eight RBI. Greene has four multi-hit performances over his last seven contests.

FULLY TORKED: Spencer Torkelson notched his second three-hit game of the season last night, finishing the contest 3×4 with a double. He has posted two-or-more hits four times in his last seven games, and has gone 11×28 with four doubles, a homer and five RBI during that stretch. Torkelson has recorded an extra-base hit in three consecutive games and in five of his last seven games.

BE LIKE MIKE: Michael Lorenzen posted his second straight impressive start last night, giving up only one run on five hits with three strikeouts in 7.0 innings. Lorenzen has tossed 7.0 innings and given up only one run in each of his last two starts, the first time in his career he has done so and the second Tigers pitcher to do so this season, joining Eduardo Rodriguez (April 18-23).

TIGERS AND GUARDIANS: The Tigers and Guardians conclude their second series of the season this afternoon. Detroit has won three of the first five games against Cleveland this season. In 2022, the Tigers went 9-10 against the Guardians, including a 3-6 record in Cleveland.

ON THE ROAD: The Tigers are 3-2 on their current six-game road trip, which includes three games at St. Louis (2-1) and three games at Cleveland (1-1). Detroit is 8-12 on the road this season. As a team, the Tigers are hitting .222/.288/.337 away from Comerica Park, while the pitching staff has a 4.55 ERA (174.0IP/88ER).

ON DECK: After an off day tomorrow, the Tigers return home to begin a five-game homestand, which starts with a three-game set against the Mariners. Detroit went 1-6 against Seattle last season, including getting swept in a three-game series at Comerica Park.

TIGERS ON THE IL:
• RHP Beau Brieske (right upper arm discomfort, 15-day IL on March 30, retroactive to March 27)
• OF Kerry Carpenter (right shoulder sprain, 10-day IL on April 29, retroactive to April 28)
• RHP Matt Manning (right foot fracture, 60-day IL on April 12)
• OF Austin Meadows (anxiety, 60-day IL on April 8, retroactive to April 7)
• RHP Casey Mize (right elbow sprain, 60-day IL on February 17)
• RHP Freddy Pacheco (right elbow sprain, 60-day IL on March 27)
• LHP Tarik Skubal (left elbow strain, 60-day IL on March 14)
• RHP Trey Wingenter (right biceps tendinitis, 15-day IL on April 22, retroactive to April 19)

TODAY’S TIGERS STARTING PITCHER – #57 Eduardo Rodriguez • 2-2, 2.21 ERA (36.2IP/9ER)

• Rodriguez will make his eighth start of the series today in the series finale at Cleveland. • Earned his third win of the season on Thursday vs. New York (NL), throwing 8.0 shutout innings with two hits allowed, one walk and nine strikeouts…has given up one run-or-less in five consecutive starts, the longest streak of his career, and is the first Tigers pitcher to throw at least 5.0 innings and allow one-run-or-less in five consecutive starts since Michael Fulmer had six straight starts from May 21-June 17, 2016.

• Had back-to-back starts of at least 7.0 shutout innings with no walks and six-or-more strikeouts on April 18 vs. Cleveland (Game 2) and April 23 at Baltimore, becoming the first pitcher in franchise history to accomplish that, according to the Elias Sports Bureau…was the first Major League pitcher to do so since Jacob deGrom from June 29-July 5, 2019.

• Named Tigers Pitcher of the Month for April, starting five games during the month and posting a 2-1 record with a 1.72 ERA (31.1IP/6ER) and 25 strikeouts…among AL pitchers (min. 25.0 IP), he ranked fourth in ERA, while he was sixth in WHIP (0.86).

• Has made five starts in his career against Cleveland and has a 3-0 record with a 3.12 ERA (34.2IP/12ER) and 27 strikeouts…in three career starts at Progressive Field, is 1-0 with a 5.30 ERA (18.2IP/11ER) and 12 strikeouts.

• Since 2018, he has a .671 winning percentage, which ranks eighth among all active Major League pitchers over that span (min. 100 starts).

CLEVELAND GUARDIANS NOTES:

GUARDS SHUTOUT TIGERS TO EVEN SERIES
The Clevelanders posted their second shutout in 3 days – third overall in 2023 – downing the Detroit Tigers by a 2-0 margin on Tuesday night at Progressive Field to even the series…Guardians have won 3 of their last 4 at home (7-10 at home overall; 10-9 on the road).

SHANE BIEBER carved out 9 strikeouts and navigated 8 baserunners to get through his 6.0 scoreless frames (6.0IP, 7H, 0R, BB, 9SO, 101 pitches)…a quartet of Cleveland relievers combined to follow with 3.0 spotless innings, capped by EMMANUEL CLASE, who recorded his MLB-leading 13th save.

For a second straight night, the Guardians took a 1-0 advantage in the 1st inning as the result of a lead-off double from STEVEN KWAN, who moved to 3rd on an AMED ROSARIO single and then scored on a sac fly by JOSÉ RAMÍREZ…WILL BRENNAN reached on a lead-off single to start the 8th and then scored an insurance tally on an RBI-triple by Rosario, who finished the contest with 4 hits.

The Guardians are 3-2 on this 9-game, 10-day homestand vs. Minnesota (2-1), Detroit (1-1, one-to-play) & Los Angeles-AL (3 games)…Cleveland has dropped 13 of last 21 overall following a 9-6 start…Guardians (17-19) hold sole possession of 2nd place in AL Central, 2.0 games behind 1st-place Minnesota (19-17) and one half-game ahead of 3rd-place Detroit (16-19)…last season, club went 9-12 in April and 12-12 in May.

TAMING THE TIGERS
With a win today, the Guardians would win back-to-back series for the first time since taking three of four from Seattle and two of three from Oakland from March 30-April 5…the club is currently 4-7 in series this season…since the start of 2022, Cleveland is 12-12 against the Tigers with a 2-3-2 series record…during the Terry Francona (since 2013), the Guardians hold a 108-76 record against Detroit, and are the only MLB team in that span with 100+ victories over the Tigers…heading into today, Cleveland is 1,146- 1,147 all-time against the Motor City Kitties.

AMED IS 4 REAL
AMED ROSARIO recorded his second 4-hit game of the season last night, going 4-for-4 with 3 singles and one triple…marks his 2nd 4-hit game of the year and his 13th since 2021, leading MLB in that span ahead of Los Angeles-NL’s Freddie Freeman (10)…it is also Rosario’s 34th 3+-hit game since 2021, 2nd in MLB behind Freeman…his last 4-hit game came on April 23 against Miami in a 7-4 victory.

4+ HIT GAMES SINCE 2021
NAME TEAM SINCE 2021 CAREER
Amed Rosario CLE 13 17
Freddie Freeman ATL/LAD 10 24
J.D. Martinez BOS/LAD 7 15
Bo Bichette TOR 7 9

His RBI-triple in the 8th inning was his third of the year, T2nd in MLB…his 34 triples since 2018 lead all Major Leaguers…Rosario has 157 singles since the start of 2022, 2nd in the AL and 4th in MLB…STEVEN KWAN (161) leads the AL and is 2nd in MLB behind Miami’s Luis Arraez.

LET’S GET IT STARTED
Following SHANE BIEBER’s 6.0-shutout inning performance last night, Guardians starters have tossed 5.0-or-more innings with 2-or-fewer runs in eight of their last nine starts…prior to April 30, the starting staff owned a 4.65 ERA (73ER/141.1IP), T17th in MLB, since then, the rotation boasts a 2.62 ERA (16ER/55.0IP), which is good for 4th in MLB…since April 30, Cleveland’s starting pitching ranks 2nd in innings (55.0IP), 2nd in opposing average (.211), 3rd in WHIP (1.04) and 3rd in H/9 (7.04).

MLB TEAM SP LEADERS IN IP, SINCE APRIL 30
TEAM IP ERA WHIP SO AVG
SF 56.2 3.34 1.18 44 .261
CLE 55.0 2.62 1.04 44 .211
SEA 54.2 3.29 0.95 53 .213
WSH 54.1 3.31 1.31 51 .254
ChC 53.0 3.06 1.11 42 .249
DET 53.0 3.57 1.00 36 .218

A MASTER-CLASE IN THE NINTH
EMMANUEL CLASE earned his MLB-leading 13th save of the season last night with a scoreless 9th inning…since 2021, he ranks 1st among MLB relievers with a 1.39 ERA (25ER/161.2IP) ahead of Brock Burke, (1.93) and his 79 saves are 3rd in MLB…the 25-yearold right-hander has a 1.86 ERA (4ER/19.1IP) with 11 strikeouts and 5 walks this season.

PUT 4 ON THE BOARD
After last night’s 2-0 victory, the Guardians are now 6-17 when scoring 3-or-fewer runs in 2023 and 11-2 when scoring 4-or-more runs…since the start of last season the Guardians are 89-15 (.857) when scoring 4+ runs in 2022, the 5th-best win percentage in MLB behind Tampa Bay (94-15, .862), Houston (95-15, .865), New York-NL (102-15, .872) and Los Angeles-NL (116-15, .885).

Cleveland is 698-182 (.793) when scoring 4+ during the TERRY FRANCONA era (since 2013), the 2nd-best win percentage in MLB behind Los Angeles-NL, and 1st in the AL…conversely, Cleveland holds a .244 (164-508) win percentage when scoring 3-or-fewer runs since 2013, the 5th-highest percentage in MLB during that span.

WIN % WHEN SCORING 4+ RUNS, SINCE 2013
TEAM WIN% RECORD
Los Angeles-NL .831 758-154
Cleveland .793 698-182
New York-AL .783 724-201
St. Louis .780 696-196
Houston .775 690-200

JOSÉ’S WAY
JOSÉ RAMÍREZ hit his 3rd sacrifice fly and Cleveland’s 12th of the season last night…Cleveland has 162 sacrifice flies since the start of 2019, 2nd in the AL and 3rd in MLB behind Los Angeles-NL (169) and Houston (174)…Ramírez’s 24 sac flies during that stretch is T4th in MLB with STL’s Nolan Arenado and OAK’s Jesús Aguilar.

Following the sac fly, he is tied for MLB lead with 6 game-winning RBI…he was also issued his MLB-leading 7th intentional walk this season, no other player has more than 3…since the start of last season he leads MLB with 27 intentional walks, ahead of Aaron

TODAY’S STARTER – 50 PEYTON BATTENFIELD RHP

BATTENFIELD AT HOME, MLB
W-L ERA G GS IP H R ER BB SO
2023 0-2 3.86 3 3 16.1 12 8 7 4 14
Career 0-2 3.86 3 3 16.1 12 8 7 4 14

BATTENFIELD’S MLB CAREER
W-L ERA G GS IP H R ER BB SO
2023 0-3 4.07 5 4 24.1 18 12 11 11 21
Career 0-3 4.07 5 4 24.1 18 12 11 11 21

TODAY’S START
The 25-year-old right-hander is making his fifth career start, fourth at Progressive Field, in the rubber match of a 3-game set with the Detroit Tigers…is making this start on 4 days rest….became the 2nd Guardians player to make their debut this season in a start against the Yankees on April 12…Battenfield got the call up to Cleveland after AARON CIVALE went on the 15-day Injured List with a strained left oblique…he was originally selected in the 9th round (286th overall) of the 2019 MLB Draft by the Houston Astros…was traded to Tampa Bay during the 2020 season and later traded to Cleveland for Jordan Luplow and DJ Johnson on July 30, 2021.

LAST TIME OUT
Battenfield last started on the mound in a 2-0 defeat to the Minnesota Twins on May 5 at Progressive Field…he took the loss, despite allowing just 2R/ER over a career-high 7.1 innings with a career-low 0 walks and career-best 7 strikeouts…Battenfield retired each of the first 17 Minnesota bats he faced before Christian Vázquez hit a single with two outs in the top of the 6th…after a wild pitch, the right-hander allowed a 440-foot two-run home run to Max Kepler that gave the Twins a 2-0 advantage…Battenfield ended up retiring 21 of the 23 total batters he faced before being relieved after 7.0 innings… of the 24 pitchers in Cleveland franchise history to post a 7.0+ inning, 2-or-fewer hits, zero walks, 7+ strikeout performance, Battenfield is the first to be charged with a loss.

A FAMILIAR FOE
Despite beginning his MLB career just 28 days ago on April 12, Battenfield has faced the Tigers once before…on April 18 in game 2 of a doubleheader at Comerica Park, Battenfield suffered his first career loss in his second career start by a 1-0 defeat…the 25-year-old threw his first career quality start, going 6.0 innings, allowing 3 hits, one run (earned), 3 walks and 5 strikeouts…after tossing 5.0 scoreless frames, his lone run allowed came via a 354-foot home run by Riley Greene to lead off the 6th…Battenfield became the first Cleveland starter to throw 6.0+IP, allow one-or-zero ER and suffer the loss since Cody Morris on September 18 last season (6.0IP, 1ER).

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