Unlucky 13: Tigers back to losing, fall to Mets on walk-off HR
After a one-day respite, the Tigers are back to losing.
In crushing ways, at that.
Tomas Nido blasted a walk-off home run off relief pitcher Buck Farmer in the 13th inning, giving the New York Mets a 5-4 victory Saturday at Citi Field.
Farmer (3-4) was facing his first batter of the game, and Nido lined a home run to right-center field for his second homer of the season.
The Tigers, who ended their nine-game losing streak Friday, have lost 10 of 11 games.
The Tigers (19-30) left 14 men on base and struggled to get a key hit.
The Mets only had seven hits and catcher Wilson Ramos had three of them, including two home runs that single-handedly damaged the Tigers.
Ramos hit a solo home run in the second inning to tie the game at 1. He had an RBI single in the fourth to give the Mets a 2-1 lead. Then he crushed a two-run home run in the sixth to put the Mets ahead, 4-3.
The Tigers received a fine start from pitcher Ryan Carpenter, who went five effective innings in a spot start.
Tigers relief pitcher Daniel Stumpf saw the Mets load the bases in the 11th inning with one out. But Stumpf struck out Aaron Altherr and got Adeiny Hechavarria on a bouncer back to Stumpf to end the threat.
Here are some other observations from Saturday’s game:
►Detroit’s scoring: Like the game before, the Tigers started quick. Niko Goodrum opened the game with a single, and moved to third on a hit-and-run with Dawel Lugo singling. Goodrum scored on a sacrifice fly by Nicholas Castellanos.
In the sixth inning, Brandon Dixon pinch-hit for Carpenter and whacked his fourth home run of the season, bringing in Grayson Greiner, who had walked with one out, to give the Tigers a 3-2 lead.
In the eighth, JaCoby Jones singled in Josh Harrison, who doubled with one out, to tie it at 4.
►New York’s scoring: It was all Ramos, the Mets’ power-hitting catcher. Ramos tied the game at 1 in the second with a solo home run into the left-field grandstand. In the fourth, Ramos brought in J.D. Davis with a single after Davis opened the inning by reaching base on a Lugo error and moved to third after consecutive balks by Carpenter.
Ramos gave the Mets a 4-3 lead with another home run in the sixth off reliever Nick Ramirez. It was Ramos’ eighth career multi-home run game.
Nido closed out the scoring in the 13th with the walk-off home run.
►Crafty Carpenter: Carpenter had his best start as a Tiger. He lasted five innings and allowed two hits and two runs (one earned), while walking none and striking out five.
Carpenter’s most impressive inning was the fourth. After being called for two consecutive balks and giving up an RBI single to Ramos with one out, Carpenter maintained his composure. He got Carlos Gomez to fly to right field, then struck out Todd Frazier to end the inning and squash any further damage.
►Dixon, Lugo clutch: Dixon pinch hit for Carpenter in the sixth inning. With two out, Dixon hit his fourth home run — his first as a pinch-hitter — into the left field grandstand off reliever Tyler Bashlor. Dixon had a pinch-hit RBI single the night before, as well. Tiger hitters are 4-for-6 pinch-hitting in the series.
Lugo had a career-high four hits Saturday, giving him five hits for the series. Miguel Cabrera has the only other four-hit game for the Tigers this season.
►About those balks: It’s not often you see balks on consecutive pitches, but Carpenter was called for back-to-back infractions in that fourth inning. Manager Ron Gardenhire came out to the field to object the calls, but somehow averted being thrown out. Video didn’t give a clear indication of how, or where, Carpenter balked.
►Missed opportunity: The Tigers loaded the bases in the 12th inning with one out, but Jones struck out and John Hicks flied out to center field to end the threat.
►JaCoby rolling: Following a two-hit game Friday when he drove in a career-high four runs, Jones added two more hits. He has a hit in seven of his last 11 games.
►Injury update: Shortstop Jordy Mercer began an injury rehab assignment Saturday with Triple-A Toledo. Mercer has been out since May 9 with a right quad strain.
Tigers at Mets
First pitch: 1:10 p.m. Sunday, Citi Field, Queens, New York
RHP Zack Wheeler (3-3 4.74), Mets: The hard-throwing right-hander has gone at least six innings in his last eight starts. Wheeler allowed four hits and three runs in seven innings against Washington on Tuesday.
RHP Spencer Turnbull (2-3, 2.68), Tigers: Turnbull is coming off a five-inning outing Tuesday against Miami, allowing seven hits and three runs. Turnbull ranks eighth among all American League pitchers in ERA, and his 54 strikeouts rank third among major league rookie pitcher.