The Minnesota Twins had more than their fair opportunities in the first few innings today. They loaded the bases with one out in the second, and Max Scherzer turned away Aaron Hicks and Pedro Florimon. After scoring a run in the fifth, the Twins couldn't add on with a runner on second and one out. Scherzer had to go through Joe Mauer, Josh Willingham, and Justin Morneau to get out of that frame.
That was the last good chance the Twins had. When Scherzer was relieved after the sixth inning, the Tigers bullpen blanked Minnesota the rest of the way, walking two without surrendering a single hit.
Mike Pelfrey did a little bit better today, although the box score won't reflect that. After surrendering a solo homer to Torii Hunter in the first and another run off of a Prince Fielder double in the fourth, things got away in the sixth. Alex Avila dropped in a Texas Leaguer to plate run number three, just over the outstretch arm of a retreating Jamey Carroll.
Gardy did the right thing and removed Pelfrey. Even his outs were loud, but runners were on first and second with two away. Unfortunately Casey Fien walked his only batter to load the bases, and Avisail Garcia tripled over Aaron Hicks' head to clear them when Caleb Thielbar battled but couldn't get that third strike. Two of the runs went to Pelfrey, one to Fien, and Thielbar gets credit for the third out of the inning.
Pelfrey's final line was 5.2 innings, five runs, five strikeouts, three walks and five hits allowed. Certainly he wasn't great, but he was let down by his bullpen. Scherzer struck out six in six innings, allowed just three hits and walked three while giving up just the one run.
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