Steve Sparks gave up a two run homer to A-Rod in the top half of the 16th, and the Tigers dropped their 6th in a row. At a .252 winning percentage, the Tigers are on pace to finish 41-121, putting them in record territory.
Also of note, Chris Mears, who was on fire when he got called up from AAA and looked like he was going to take over the closer role at least for the time being, was sent back down to AAA. Chris didn’t give up a run in his first 11 relief appearances. During the stretch, opponents hit a modest .118 against him. By the time he got sent down, his ERA had ballooned to 4.24, and his batting average against jumped all the way to .272. Those upward trends are not what you want to see.
Mike Maroth is on the mound tonight. Things don’t get any easier with the Angels in town over the weekend. What will be interesting is that the Tigers could have material impact on the AL central race. In the final two and a half weeks, the Tigers play the Royals and the Twins seven times each, with a three game series against Toronto squashed in their. With only 2.5 games seperating three teams, it’s going to be interesting.