The Detroit Tigers exploited a critical throwing error by pitcher Danny Duffy to take a 2-1 lead that held up for a Detroit win Friday night at Kauffman Stadium.
Anibal Sanchez and Danny Duffy locked up in a tight duel over 7 innings, with Duffy’s miscue coming in the 3rd inning. With runners on 1st and 2nd, Duffy threw an attempted pick-off into centerfield, allowing both runners to advance. The mistake proved fatal when Miguel Cabrera followed with a sacrifice fly to score what turned out to be the winning run.
Home plate umpire Chad Fairchild cheated the Royals out of a golden opportunity when he called Lorenzo Cain out for interference in the 8th inning. Detroit catcher Bryan Holaday threw the ball into centerfield when Nori Aoki stole second base after his lead-off single. Fairchild claimed that Cain obstructed Holiday’s throwing lane.
Instead, Fairchild’s abject incompetence interfered with the game.
You can see the rotten call here. Of course, the Detroit announcers thought it was a good call because Cain stepped on the plate, but it appeared to me that Holaday still had a throwing lane.
The loss drops the Royals to 47-45. Kansas City is now 6.5 games behind Detroit in the American League Central.
On the Mound
Danny Duffy again didn’t deserve to lose, which happens a lot when you have a 5-9 record paired with a 2.76 ERA. Duffy went 6.0 innings, allowing 5 hits, 0 walks, 2 runs (1 earned) with 6 strikeouts. The unearned run came on Duffy’s own throwing error.
At the Plate
In what looks like a phrase destined to become the epitaph for Kansas City’s 2014 season, the Royals only managed 1 run despite a pile of hits. Tonight, it took 11 hits and 1 walk to produce 1 run—-despite 3 doubles.
When you strand 9 base-runners, its hard to blame even a rotten umpire for your loss.
Hosmer went 3-4, with a double, 2 singles, an 1 run scored.
Salvador Perez went 2-4 with 2 singles and the Royals’ only RBI.
Both Lorenzo Cain and Omar Infante also chipped in with 2-hit nights.
This and That
Eric Hosmer, at long last, is getting getting hot. He continued his 11-game hitting streak Friday night, which has included 19 hits in 43 at bats (.441) with 4 doubles and 2 home runs. His last hitless game came on June 29 when he went 0-5 against the Angels. Hosmer is hitting .462/.543/.718 in the month of July.
Royals fans began to boo every strike call Chad Fairchild made at home plate after he jobbed Cain in the 8th. Fairchild added insult to injury when he expanded the strike zone for Tigers reliever Joba Chamberlain by calling a high and outside pitch (according to PitchTrack) strike one against Billy Butler. Butler ended up lining out to center.
The Royals continue to struggle at home, dropping 3 games under .500 at Kauffman Stadium (21-24) for the season.
KC Kingdom Player of the Game
My vote has to go to the red-hot Eric Hosmer, whom the Royals need to stay hot in the 2nd half.
- Billy Butler – 2
- Danny Valencia
- Christian Colon
- Raul Ibanez
- Jarrod Dyson – 2
- Lorenzo Cain – 6
- Johnny Giavotella
- Wade Davis
- Norichika Aoki
- Salvador Perez – 6
- Jeremy Guthrie – 5
- Jason Vargas – 6
- Alex Gordon – 9
- Bruce Chen
- James Shields – 7
- Yordano Ventura – 4
- Mike Moustakas
- Danny Duffy – 6
- Omar Infante – 3
- Mike Moustakas – 5
- Alcides Escobar – 5
- Eric Hosmer – 11
- Michael Mariot
Miguel Cabrera might have gone 0-3, but he had the at bat of the day for the Tigers when he took 2 balls and a strike from Danny Duffy in the 3rd. With runners at 2nd and 3rd, Cabrera almost forced Duffy to come in with something he could handle—which Cabrera hit for a sacrifice fly to right.
The Royals send James Shields (9-4, 3.71 ERA) to the mound in the 3rd game of the series to stop the bleeding. Kansas City badly needs to see the guy that shut out Tampa Bay days ago, instead of the pitcher who has struggled over the last 2 months. Shields will be opposed by Rick Porcello (11-5, 3.53 ERA) for Detroit. Game time is 7:10 PM CST at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City.
|Austin Jackson CF||4||1||3||0||0||1||4||.251||.314||.368|
|Ian Kinsler 2B||4||0||1||1||0||1||4||.305||.338||.474|
|Miguel Cabrera 1B||3||0||0||1||0||1||4||.313||.372||.545|
|J.D. Martinez RF||4||0||0||0||0||4||4||.328||.365||.633|
|Torii Hunter DH||4||0||0||0||0||2||4||.272||.294||.449|
|Nick Castellanos 3B||3||0||0||0||0||0||4||.269||.315||.405|
|Don Kelly 3B||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.258||.333||.309|
|Eugenio Suarez SS||3||0||0||0||0||0||4||.274||.355||.442|
|Bryan Holaday C||2||0||0||0||0||0||3||.278||.326||.316|
|Rajai Davis LF||3||1||1||0||0||0||3||.290||.328||.429|
2B: A Jackson (19, off D Duffy).
SF: M Cabrera (7, off D Duffy).
SH: B Holaday (1, off K Herrera).
HBP: N Castellanos (2, by D Duffy); E Suarez (2, by K Herrera).
TB: A Jackson 4; R Davis; I Kinsler.
RBI: M Cabrera (74); I Kinsler (50).
Team LOB: 5.
With RISP: 1 for 6.
DP: 1. N Castellanos-E Suarez.
E: N Castellanos (7).
SB: I Kinsler (10, 2nd base off D Duffy/S Perez); R Davis (24, 2nd base off K Herrera/S Perez).
Pickoffs: R Davis (2nd base by D Duffy).
|Nori Aoki RF-LF||5||0||2||0||0||0||5||.266||.328||.330||.657|
|Lorenzo Cain CF-RF||4||0||0||0||0||0||4||.313||.348||.434||.782|
|Eric Hosmer 1B||4||1||3||0||0||0||4||.268||.316||.382||.698|
|Salvador Perez C||4||0||2||1||0||0||4||.284||.328||.441||.769|
|Billy Butler DH||4||0||0||0||0||2||4||.269||.321||.349||.670|
|Mike Moustakas 3B||4||0||1||0||0||1||4||.193||.257||.378||.634|
|Omar Infante 2B||4||0||2||0||0||0||4||.273||.316||.381||.697|
|Jarrod Dyson LF-CF||3||0||0||0||1||0||4||.294||.350||.343||.693|
|Alcides Escobar SS||4||0||1||0||0||1||4||.283||.321||.388||.709|
2B: E Hosmer (25, off A Sanchez); N Aoki (13, off A Sanchez); M Moustakas (11, off A Sanchez).
TB: E Hosmer 4; N Aoki 3; S Perez 2; M Moustakas 2; O Infante 2; A Escobar.
RBI: S Perez (36).
2-out RBI: S Perez.
Team LOB: 9.
With RISP: 1 for 11.
E: D Duffy (3).
SB: O Infante (4, 2nd base off J Nathan/B Holaday).
Pickoffs: S Perez (1st base by A Sanchez).
|Anibal Sanchez, W (6-3)||7||8||1||1||0||3||0||3.04||90||62|
|Joba Chamberlain, H (17)||1||2||0||0||0||0||0||2.70||10||8|
|Joe Nathan, S (19)||1||1||0||0||1||1||0||5.61||27||13|
|Danny Duffy, L (5-9)||6||5||2||1||0||6||0||2.76||99||69|
D Duffy faced 1 batter in the 7th inning.
HBP: K Herrera (2; E Suarez); D Duffy (4; N Castellanos).
Pickoffs: A Sanchez (1; S Perez, 1st base); D Duffy (3; R Davis, 2nd base).