Bullpen blows save twice, Tigers fall in 10

The Tiger bullpen reached a new low on Friday night, blowing not one, but two save opportunities, and eventually lost the game on a Jason Smith error. The Tiger offense provided good support, but Ugueth Urbina couldn't hold the 3-run lead he had been given in the 9th inning, and then extra innings came, and another blown save was witnessed, and this time it ended with a loss before the offense could get another chance.

It just wasn't the Tigers night, even when up against a team that the Tigers need to beat, especially on a road trip with visits to division rival Minnesota and the New York Yankees.

The offense started firing on all cylinders, once starter Jeremy Bonderman left the game. Bonderman only ended up going 5 innings, allowing 3 runs and striking out 7. But the offense came to life after he left, scoring 6 runs in the 6th, 7th and 8th innings. All this led to a 3-run lead for closer Ugueth Urbina.

Unfortunately, Urbina allowed a game-tying 3-run Home Run to Charles Johnson.

Once again, the offense came back, as Marcus Thames hit his first Home Run as a Tiger, a solo shot to give the Tigers a 1-run lead going into the bottom of the 10th.

This time it was Jamie Walker, the Tigers most reliable reliever thusfar this season. But even Walker struggled, and then Jason Smith made two consecutive throwing errors, the first on the tying run allowing Aaron Miles to get into scoring position, the second allowed the game winning run to score.

This was a game the Tigers needed to win, but the relief pitching and defense once again couldn't come through in the clutch, an all-too-common problem in the 2004 season.

At the plate, Carlos Guillen went 3-for-4 with 2 doubles and 2 RBI. Dmitri Young and Omar Infante also each went 3-for-5 with 2 runs scored apiece.

For the Rockies, Johnson obviously had the big Home Run in the 9th, and Todd Helton and Aaron Miles each had 3 hits apiece.

The Tigers will try and get back on the winning track and stop their 2-game skid, with Mike Maroth facing Jason Jennings. Game time is set for 8:05pm.


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