Tigers fail to capitalize after review in 6th

Chris McCosky
The Detroit News
Miguel Cabrera argues that he was not tagged by the Pirates' Sean Rodriguez in the sixth inning. The Tigers challenged the call of out and it was overturned and Cabrera was given third base.

Detroit — It could have been a pivotal moment for the Tigers, but like everything else Monday, it went for naught.

They had cut the Pirates lead to 7-4 in sixth inning and had runners on first and second with one out and J.D. Martinez batting. Martinez, who homered off Pirates starter Jonathon Niese in the fifth, rolled the first pitch to third baseman Sean Rodriguez.

Rodriguez, who was moving toward second, made an attempt to tag Cabrera and then threw to second base to force Victor Martinez — an inning double play, at least as it was initially ruled. Cabrera waived frantically that he was not tagged.

Manager Brad Ausmus convinced the umpiring crew to convene and they agreed to a video review. Clearly, Rodriguez did not tag Cabrera and the Tigers had one more at-bat with the tying run at the plate.

Ausmus said it wasn’t Cabrera’s reaction that alerted him, it was assistant coach Matt Martin, who spotted it immediately on the clubhouse video monitor.

“Actually on that play I was looking at Miggy and Jerry Meals, the third base umpire, and Jerry said no touch,” Ausmus said. “So, I was a little confused when Miggy was upset. I was like 'Why are you upset, he called you safe?'

Tigers fear McCann could be headed to DL

“And then Paul (Nauert) at second said he had a tag. At that point we already knew that the tag was missed. It was a matter of them getting together, and once they gave us what their final decision was, determine whether we needed to use a challenge or not.”

It brought Nick Castellanos to the plate with a chance to do some damage, but he flew to center, again on the first pitch.

Around the horn

McCann, before leaving the game with an ankle injury, threw out two more runners attempting to steal season. He got Matt Joyce to end the first inning and Gregory Polanco to end the third. The Tigers catchers have thrown out five of six would-be base stealers this season – McCann has nabbed four of five.

... The Tigers bullpen pitched 4⅔ innings of scoreless baseball Monday. Drew VerHagen (two-thirds of an inning), Logan Kensing (two innings), Mark Lowe (one) and Kyle Ryan (one). 

Twitter @cmccosky