Jeremy Bonderman improved his record to a perfect 8-0 with another nice start last night. He pitched only five innings because Jim Leyland wanted to hit Gary Sheffield with the bases loaded in the top of the sixth but he gave up three runs on five hits and one walk with four strikeouts. There’s a little concern because it’s Bonderman’s third straight non-quality and he’s seen his ERA come up close to a half run but the offense has picked him up.
The Tigers big inning was the sixth where they scored five of their nine runs. The best performance of that inning was an impressive 12 pitch at bat by Omar Infante. He worked the count full and then fouled off pitch after pitch before punching an RBI single through the opposite side of the infield. Curtis Granderson followed that up with a two run single and the rest is history.
Magglio Ordonez is now hitting .383 with a three for four game in which he scored twice and drove in a run. Carlos Guillen golfed a two run homer in the fourth inning and he also scored two runs.
Fernando Rodney had another erratic inning. He walked one, hit a batter and a couple of times he crossed up Mike Rabello. He ended up getting out of the inning but he left the tying run at the plate.
Kenny Rogers makes his season debut on Friday against the Braves in Atlanta. The Tigers will face John Smoltz, who almost 20 years ago was traded by the Tigers in one of the most infamous trades in franchise history. Smoltz has thrown very well this year so Kenny Rogers is getting thrown right into the fire.