Detroit Tigers struggle in every aspect of Opening Day loss to Reds, 7-1
The Detroit Tigers opened the season Friday in Cincinnati, 120 days after their originally scheduled opener in a topsy-turvy coronavirus world that featured empty stands and fake crowd noise.
What was all too familiar was the Tigers themselves: They got behind early and struggled to generate offense in a 7-1 loss to the Reds.
Left-hander Matthew Boyd started for the Tigers and struggled with control early. He walked consecutive batters and gave up two runs in a 30-pitch first inning. He surrendered a solo home run to Joey Votto in the fifth inning.
Boyd allowed four earned runs on six hits with two walks and two strikeouts in five innings throwing 88 pitches.
Tigers hitters didn’t give Boyd much support. They managed just three hits.
First baseman C.J. Cron was the lone bright spot on offense for the Tigers. He walloped a 447-foot solo home run to left in the fourth to cut the deficit to 3-1.
Here are observations from Friday’s game:
Designated hitter Miguel Cabrera went 0-for-3 with a walk and never got the ball out of the infield, with two groundouts. The Tigers’ first three hitters combined to go 1-for-11 with five strikeouts and one hit, courtesy of No. 2 hitter Jonathan Schoop’s first-inning single.
Oh, that bullpen
Right-hander Jose Cisnero took over for Boyd to start the sixth and got two quick outs by getting Jesse Winker on a groundout, then struck out Nick Senzel. But he followed that by allowing a single to Freddy Galvis, a walk to No. 9 hitter Curt Casali, then an RBI single to Shogo Akiyama — his first in the majors — as the Reds took a 5-1 lead.
Right-hander David McKay took over in the seventh but yielded to Gregory Soto after one-third of an inning. McKay allowed a one-out walk to Nick Castellanos, then made a mistake with a batting-practice fastball on a 3-1 count to Mike Moustakas, who hammered a two-run homer to right for a 7-1 Reds lead.
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With Cron on first with two outs in the seventh inning, Cameron Maybin hit an infield popup. In his frustration, he slammed the bat near the plate as he began his trot, but the bat bounced hard and caught catcher Casali — who had taken off his mask — under the chin. Maybin immediately apologized and Casali was left moving his jaw to make sure his jaw still worked.
Christin Stewart made a great play in the fourth inning. Senzel led off with a sharp line drive right at Stewart, who was playing just out of the shadows and staring right into the low sun. He was wearing his sunglasses but needed a second before he tracked the ball and dropped to his knees to snag it.
Contact Carlos Monarrez at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @cmonarrez.