The Detroit Tigers anticipated that warmer weather would heat up their bats. Instead, they have continued to flame out at the plate.
The Tigers were shut out for the third time this month on Sunday, managing just two singles in a 6-0 loss to Toronto. They’ll continue their 10-game homestand against the Chicago White Sox on Monday.
Detroit only scored one run in a loss on Friday. The Tigers are the lowest-scoring team in the majors (162 runs) and are suffering from a major power shortage.
They have no home runs in the last eight games and just 30 for the season. In contrast, New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge leads the majors with 24 homers.
“I don’t think you ever accept mediocrity,” Tigers manager A.J. Hinch said. “These guys have track records. I believe in the track records, I believe in where guys are going (to end up). That’s what gives us optimism to come out of it. The mechanism to do it is harder than just saying it, or harder than just believing it. You’ve got to go out and do it. … (Monday) is the next opportunity, and we can break out and have a good offensive game.”
Starter Ross Stripling and three Blue Jays relievers manhandled the Tigers in the weekend finale.
“Usually when a team doesn’t hit, doesn’t score, there’s very few baserunners, it’s some credit to the pitcher and some mistakes that you missed,” Hinch said. “Based on our track record this season, it’s probably a little bit of both.”
Veteran right-hander Lance Lynn is expected to be activated from the injured list to start the series opener for the White Sox. Lynn (11-6, 2.69 ERA in 2021) has been sidelined all season with a right knee injury.
Lynn is 6-3 with an ERA of 3.21 and 59 strikeouts in nine career starts against Detroit. He has won four consecutive starts against the Tigers.
He’ll be opposed by right-hander Rony Garcia (0-1, 4.50), who will be making his 12th appearance and fourth start this season.
The 24-year-old gave up two runs on four hits in five innings against the New York Yankees on June 5 and didn’t figure into the decision in the 5-4, 10-inning loss. In his first appearance this season, Garcia tossed 1 1/3 innings of scoreless relief against the White Sox.
However, he has a 9.82 ERA in five career relief outings against Chicago.
The White Sox are probably happy to leave home after dropping four of their past five, including an 8-6, 12-inning defeat on Sunday. Manager Tony La Russa was subject to “Fire Tony” chants.
Starting pitcher Michael Kopech departed in the first inning after suffering a knee injury.
Chicago has been operating without sparkplug Tim Anderson, who is beginning a rehab assignment as he recovers from a groin injury. Catcher Yasmani Grandal left Saturday’s game with hamstring tightness, but the team is hopeful he can avoid a stint on the injured list.
“We are not putting Yas on the (IL) because he showed up today feeling pretty good,” La Russa said on Sunday. “We are going to treat him the next couple of days and see how he feels.”
The two American League Central Division foes haven’t seen each other since the opening weekend of the season, when Chicago took two of three games in Detroit.
–Field Level Media