Twins Hold Off Tigers, Win 6-4

In the offseason, the Tigers were looking for an established starting pitcher, someone to anchor the top of the staff and provide some consistency. Unfortunately, after the season opener, the Tigers new ace (RHP Jason Johnson) has done nothing but struggle - and that trend continued tonight as Johnson couldn't keep the Twins in check. The Tigers depleted offense couldn't keep up this time though, and took the loss to fall to 8-6.

RHP Jason Johnson was given the responsibility when he signed the 2-year, $7 million contract of stabilizing the Tiger rotation - after the first couple weeks of the season, it was obvious the Tigers needed that element, with extremely inconsistent performances from very young pitchers. Unfortunately, Johnson has yet to emerge in that role. After an excellent start on opening day, he has had serious problems (possibly due to a re-ocurring blister that has flared up again) on the mound and has yet to give the Tigers a good start to the game. As for the game against the Twins, Johnson went 5 innings while giving up 6 ER (the final 2 were allowed in by reliever Danny Patterson) on 8 hits and 2 walks with 2 strikeouts. Carlos Silva had a very similar to his first outing against the Tigers, going 6 innings while allowing 4 earned runs.

Offensively, Rondell White was once again the player of the game, launching his 4th home run of the season. Carlos Guillen also had a pair of RBI, while DH Chris Shelton got his first major league hit (a double). One good note was that Bobby Higginson pinch hit in the 9th inning, signaling that his ankle injury isn't too bad, and he should be back in the lineup soon.

The two teams battle again tomorrow, same time (8:10pm), same place (Metrodome in Minneapolis). RHP Nate Cornejo faces off against Twins ace Brad Radke.

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