Miguel Cabrera, Akil Baddoo crush homers in Detroit Tigers' 5-2 win over Yankees
TAMPA, Fla. — The Detroit Tigers defeated the New York Yankees, 5-2, on Monday at George M. Steinbrenner Field, improving to 13-11 in Grapefruit League play.
The Tigers scored their five runs on six hits and two walks. They struck out 13 times. Right-hander Jose Urena made his final spring start and pitched into the fifth inning. He used 78 pitches (36 strikes), giving up one run on one hit and five walks across 4⅔ innings. He got three strikeouts.
Rule 5 draft pick Akil Baddoo gave the Tigers a 2-1 lead in the second when he turned on a 93 mph fastball for his fifth homer this spring. He is hitting .325 through 21 games in camp. In the fifth inning, Miguel Cabrera drove an opposite-field three-run homer, which traveled 354 feet at a speed of 104.8 mph off the bat. His long ball gave the Tigers a 5-1 lead.
Urena allowed an RBI double to Giancarlo Stanton in the first inning, and struggled with his sinker command in the fourth inning, walking three of his first four batters.
With runners on first and second, Urena got help from shortstop Harold Castro, who made a spectacular glove-flip to start a double play. Despite the Yankees putting runners on the corners with two outs, Clint Frazier grounded out to shortstop to end the inning.
Urena got nine swings-and-misses: six with his sinker and three with his slider. His fastball averaged 93.9 mph and reached 96.1 mph. He started pounding the strike zone again in the fifth inning, getting consecutive outs, before manager AJ Hinch called to the bullpen.
At the plate
Cabrera led the Tigers with a 2-for-3, three-RBI performance. While it was only his second home run this spring, Hinch explained before the game that Cabrera has focused on hitting to the opposite field because he is naturally skilled at pulling the ball to left field.
Outfielder Victor Reyes had two hits, and Castro doubled in the fifth inning. Spencer Torkelson, the 2020 No. 1 overall pick, struck out looking in his lone at-bat and played third base as a defensive replacement. This spring, Torkelson — ranked by MLB Pipeline as the No. 4 prospect in all of baseball — is 1-for-26 (.038) with four walks and 16 strikeouts in 19 games.
Renato Nunez, who has decided to not opt out of his contract with the organization and will report to Triple-A Toledo to work on his defense, replaced Cabrera at first base in the fifth. He struck out in his only at-bat.
On the mound
Left-hander Derek Holland only needed two pitches to finish what Urena started in the fifth inning. He went back out for the sixth and struck out three of the batters he faced: Thairo Estrada (sinker, looking), Stanton (sinker, looking) and Gio Urshela (sinker, swinging). He gave up a two-strike single to Aaron Hicks before the strikeouts against Stanton and Urshela.
Right-hander Jose Cisnero pitched a scoreless seventh inning, recording two strikeouts. His fastball averaged 96.3 mph. In the eighth, righty Buck Farmer added to the strikeout total, but he issued a solo homer to Estrada with two outs. Miguel Del Pozo pitched a clean ninth inning.
1. Cabrera, 2. Holland, 3. Baddoo.
Tuesday (12:35 p.m.) against Tampa Bay Rays in Lakeland.