The Detroit Tigers’ third pacer, Jaymer Candalerio, played through the puddles at Infield and made the mistake of shaping the outcome of Wednesday afternoon’s game, but left-hander Eduardo Rodriguez was not spared the blame.
“My job is to get the next person out,” Rodriguez said.
Candelario’s throw error with two outs in the fourth inning ended the Road team into a six – run rule, with the Boston Red Sox hitting Rodriguez for five extra runs.
The Tigers lost 9-7.
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“There are no excuses,” Candelario said. “I made a mistake. That’s it. It’s always frustrating when you do not make those plays, but we’ll go from there. We will work hard not to make those mistakes again.”
Fifteen minutes into the first inning, it started to rain at Comerica Park and continued until the bottom of the fifth inning. Ground staff repeatedly descended on the field and poured new dirt in an effort to maintain the dull infield, potters box and pitcher’s mound.
Detroit fell to a 2-4 record, losing the series again to the Chicago White Sox and Red Sox to open the 2022 season. The Tigers travel to Kansas City for a four-game series.
First of many
Spencer Torkelson, in his sixth MLB game, pierced the first home run of his career in the seventh inning, sending a fastball from left-arm defender Austin Davis to the left-field seats.
Torkelson finished 2-for-4 with two RBIs.
“It’s good,” Dorkelson said. “I just sat there and enjoyed it a little bit. I didn’t think I had to show the jug or anything. I knew it got there as soon as it hit, so I wanted to enjoy it.”
The Tigers took three runs in the eighth and thanks to Eric Haas (RBI singles), Harold Castro (walk) and Torkelson (solo) the bases were loaded and got more chances without outs. Red Sox manager Alex Cora called Jake Dickman out of Pulben and was opposed by Tigers manager AJ Hing Miguel Cabrera.
Dickman dismissed Cabrera and Akhil Potu, but Victor Reyes hit an RBI single. Austin Meadows was hit by Dickman’s full-count slider, which knocked another run to a 9-7 deficit.
Jonathan Scoop, right in the eighth inning, came out against the right Hansel Robles to block the loaded bases. Robles returned ninth and retired the Tigers in the lineup.
“You get down like that, and I’m so proud of our guys for not giving up on ad-pads and coming to the next series,” Hing said. “It’s a good sign. We had some good swings, which eventually gave us a chance, failed. I’m encouraged by both effort and preparation.”
Rodriguez, who has played for the Red Sox since 2015-21, conceded five wins in his first match with his old team and seven runs (two earned).
The 29-year-old joined the Tigers last season after signing a five-year, $ 77 million contract. Although Candelario made a throwing error, the Rodriguez Red Sox allowed him to hit three consecutive doubles on the left field.
Hinge knocked Rodriguez out for two in fourth. Right-handed reliever Ronnie Garcia, 24, and former Rule 5 draft pick, received the final out.
“We need a little more aggression in his next start,” Hinch said. “I hope it was a weird start for him against his former teammates. But the impact of his things changed as the game went on. He lost his sense of command and they took advantage of it.”
When the wet paper bag separates
Before the fourth, Rodriguez traveled against his former teammates.
The Tigers gave Red Sox opener Nathan Iowalti a one-run lead in the first inning on Scoop’s solo home run. Rodriguez supported his new team with zeros in the first two innings.
Rodriguez allowed a solo home run for Enrique Hernandez in the third game.
Then, in fourth place, the Red Sox exploded for six runs.
“I lost my command a little bit,” Rodriguez said. “I made some mistakes and they took advantage of it. It’s just like whoever you face. The plate is too high, too much in the strike zone. That’s what happened.”
Jumpstart JD Martinez drew a six-pitch style to jumpstart Rodriguez’s fall, and Bobby Dolbeck pulled a single to increase the pressure. Cora used Christian Arroyo’s sacrificial ball to advance the runners; Alex Verdugo led Boston 2-1 with a sacrifice.
That’s when Candelario made his throwing mistake.
“He was very neutral,” Cora said, “when we got him in the zone, we did damage.”
After Christian Vasquez reached the safe, the Red Sox created three doubles in a row from Jackie Bradley Jr., Hernandez and Rafael Devers. Those extra basic wins put the Tigers down 6-1. Trevor Story beat Garcia 7-1.
Rodriguez finished with five strikeouts: Story (twice), Dolbeck, Vasquez, Bradley. For his 72 pitches (44 strikes), he used 42 four-seam fastballs (58%), 14 singers (19%), six cutters (8%), six changeups (8%) and four sliders (6%). He recorded nine swings and misses with five four-seamers, two singers and two transitions.
He had eight strikes, only two with his secondary pitches.
“Today is the hardest day to pitch with rain,” Bornhard said. “Conditions were broken. But I thought he’s good. I thought his things were so good. Fourthly a couple of wins they put together and put him to work. One of those days.”
Not a total loss
The Tigers got a run again in the fifth inning, a day after the center fielder recorded his first win – crushing a line-drive home run to the right-center field.
Ivaldi put out the other three batters in fifth place: Tucker Bornheart, Reyes and Meadows. Like the Tigers’ Rodriguez, Ivaldi made his second start for the Red Sox.
Boston’s opening day opener allowed four wins and two runs in a walk with six strikeouts in five innings. The Tigers scored a total of 11 runs, three runs and seven runs in 12 strikeouts.
Instead of Rodriguez, Garcia finished the fourth inning, pitching in the fifth and sixth innings without scoring. He led to right-hander Drew Hutchison, who allowed two runs in three wins and a seventh walk.
Hutchinson served in the eighth without a score around two pace runners.
Lefty Closer Gregory Choto finished ninth, working around Verduco’s lead-off doubles.
Contact Evan Petzold at Epetzold@freepress.com or follow him on Twitter @EvanPetzold. Read more about the Detroit Tigers and subscribe to our Tigers newsletter.