Detroit Tigers - 36-35, 4th in AL Central
Everyone was ready to play on Saturday night, and in turn the Tigers were able to pull away with a 5-1 victory. It was an especially good night for Sean Douglass, who made his Tiger debut in stellar fashion, allowing one run on four hits over six innings of work to earn his first victory with Detroit. The Tiger offense started out slow, but they kicked it into gear as they game wore on, including a four run seventh inning to build a solid lead. After an RBI single by Ivan Rodriguez in the sixth, the team blew the game wide open in the 7th via three RBI single and an RBI triple. Placido Polanco had a huge game as he continues his hot start with the Tigers, going 3-for-5 with two runs and an RBI. Craig Monroe also had a pair of hits, while Chris Shelton and Brandon Inge each had a hit, a run and an RBI. The rubber match between the two teams takes place Sunday at 4:40pm when Jeremy Bonderman faces Claudio Vargas.
- Paul Wezner, Senior Editor
AAA Toledo Mud Hens - 45-29, 1st in West division
It was a rough night for Toledo pitchers as the Mud Hens fell 8-3. Wilfredo Ledezma got the start but struggled mightily, as he gave up five runs in 4 1/3 innings. More notably, Ledezma walked seven batters over that stretch as he fell to 1-2 since being sent down. Rob Henkel came on in relief but didn't fare much better, giving up three more runs in 2 1/3 innings. At the plate, Mike Hessman had a solo home run, while Kevin Hooper had a pair of hits in the leadoff role. Curtis Granderson added a double and a run, and Gookie Dawkins had a triple and a run. Toledo faces Indianapolis again at 2pm on Sunday.
- Paul Wezner, Senior Editor
AA Erie SeaWolves - 41-34, 1st in Southern division
The 93-degree game weather was hot – but the SeaWolves were hotter as they won 13-7 against the Mets. Roll out the red carpet for SeaWolves star C Max St. Pierre. Erie's catcher drove in 4 runs, 2 with a single in the 1st and 2 with a double in the 8th. Add 3 runs courtesy of SS Scott Tousa who slammed a 2-run homer in the 4th and drove in another the following inning. DH-1B Mike Rabelo was another big hitter accounting for 3 runs of his own. Rabelo tripled in 2 in the 5th and doubled in one more in the 8th. LF-CF Mike Woods knocked in 2 – an RBI double in the 4th and an RBI single in the 7th. RF Bryon Gettis started Erie's onslaught with an RBI single in the 1st. Starter Humberto Sanchez pitched 6 innings and got the win. Sanchez gave up 3 of the Mets' 7 runs. Reliever Lee Rodney came on in the 7th and gave up 4 runs in 1 2/3 innings of work. Corey Hamman relieved and kept the Mets scoreless the rest of the game. The series winner will be determined Sunday afternoon at 1:30.
- Paige Edelman, Erie Correspondent
High-A Lakeland Tigers - 0-3, 5th in West division
The L-Tigers lost to Dunedin, who completed a three-game sweep against Lakeland by winning 8-4. Nate Bumstead (8-2) lost for the second time this year. He pitched six and a third innings, gave up nine hits, seven runs (only two earned), and two walks. The L-Tigers were up 3-0 after the first inning thanks to Kelly Hunt who hit a two-run double, then scored. Lakeland added another run in the bottom of the second on Danilo Sanchez's home run, which is number 13 on the season for him. However, Lakeland collapsed in the fourth. The L-Tigers had two fielding errors in the inning and the Blue Jays scored five runs to take the lead. Dunedin got another three runs in the seventh to put the game away. Bumstead came out in the seventh after giving up two straight one-out singles. Brian Rogers came on in relief but could not get out of the inning unharmed. Felix Sanchez came on and pitched the last two for Lakeland. Kelly Hunt finished two for four with two RBI and a run. Danilo Sanchez was one for three with the homer. Vincent Blue was two for five with a run scored. The L-Tigers had the best record in the league for the first half of the season but have made a slow 0-3 start in the second half. The L-Tigers look to turn things around in a three-game series against Sarasota. The first game is tomorrow in Sarasota, 6pm.
- Aaron Westgate, Lakeland Correspondent
A West Mich. Whitecaps - 0-3, 6th in East division
Things fell apart for the West Michigan defense Saturday. By the end of the third inning, the Lugnuts had nine runs on the board and would go on to score a total of 11 by game's end (final score 11-3). Starter Josh Rainwater gave up seven hits and nine runs to the 18 batters he faced, including a two-run homer in the top of the 1st. Rainwater's third-inning reliever Lavon Lewis faced just two batters before he was replaced in turn by Freddy Dolsi. The Whitecaps offense came alive in the 7th inning in the form of a one man rally. Right fielder Luis Sabino led off the inning with a walk, and advanced to 2nd when DH Matt Parrish was hit by a pitch. First baseman Josh Lee then stepped up to send a big three-run blast to left field. The homer was Lee's 4th this season. West Michigan has one more chance to get a win against Lansing when they close out this series on Sunday. Play gets underway at 2:00 p.m.
- Deb Ziegler, West Michigan Correspondent
SS-A Oneonta Tigers - 2-3, 2nd in Stedler division
It wasn't quite the major league debut Kevin Whelan was hoping for after signing earlier this week. After being handed a one run lead, Whelan promptly gave up three runs in the ninth to lose the lead and the game for Oneonta as they fell 7-5. Dan Konecny started, giving up three runs in 4 1/3 innings. At the plate, seven O-Tigers managed a hit, but no one had more than one. Schuyler Williamson did have a pair of RBI for Oneonta. Oneonta is off on Sunday but is back in action on Monday when they travel to Vermont to start a three game series.
- Paul Wezner, Senior Editor