After the first half of the week saw the Detroit Tigers sweep the Seattle Mariners at home for the first time in over twenty years, the second half of the week was not as kind to the Tigers. The Cleveland Indians strolled into Comerica Park and did the same thing that they have done to the Tigers all year; score runs, and beat them. The Tigers took a beating, getting swept, again, by the Cleveland Indians. In the weekend series, the Indians out-scored the Detroit Tigers 22-8. The writing was on the wall very early in the series, when Jordan Zimmerman only last 3.2 innings, giving up nine hits and seven runs, all earned. It was actually Mike Pelfrey who came in to save the day, pitching 4.1 innings, and not giving up a run. Ian Kinsler was two-for-four, red-hot Cameron Maybin was three-for-four, and James McCann was two-for-four, but there wasn’t much else the Tigers were able to scrap together beyond that.
On Saturday, Carlos Carrasco was able to throw a complete game shut-out in a Cleveland 6-0 massacre, seeing the Tigers held to four hits in the game, and striking out seven times. Annibal Sanchez made his return to the rotation, giving up five hits, two walks, and four earned runs in five innings. Mark Lowe continues to be an abomination in the bullpen. On Saturday, he gave-up two earned runs, pushing his ERA to 10.13 on the season.
On Sunday, in the final game of the series, the Cleveland Indians rocked four homeruns off of Justin Verlander, all of which came in the fifth inning of the game. Ronnie Chisenhall, Mike Napoli, Juan Uribe, and Tyler Naquin all took Verlander yard. In only 4.2 innings, Justin Verlander gave up eight earned runs on nine hits, with two walks and five strikeouts.
The Detroit Tigers came in to this series only three games behind these Cleveland Indians, with a chance to make a push for the top spot in the division. After this train-wreck of a series for Detroit, they are now seven back in the standings. They are going to lead the week off by playing a hot Miami team, who have won seven of their last ten games. As the trade deadline creeps closer, every game and every series becomes monumentally more important. It seems like every time the Detroit Tigers take one step forward, they take two steps back. Even being at the end of June, it’s still difficult to determine exactly what kind of team they are, and whether they need to be buyers or sellers (for the second straight year) at the deadline.