Short recap tonight because the rage, it flows within me and I can only contain it so long.
The Detroit Tigers had a 5-1 lead. They were six outs away from coming back to Detroit with a 2-0 ALCS lead and possibly a stranglehold on the series. Now they’re coming home to Detroit with a split after blowing game 2 in spectacular fashion.
Here’s what went right:
Here’s what went horrifyingly wrong:
Unlike last night, none of Leyland’s moves worked out. Multiple relievers failed to do their job in the eighth inning; particularly glaring was Drew Smyly’s walk of Jacoby Ellsbury after reaching a 1-2 count on the Boston outfielder. Starter-turned-reliever Rick Porcello made quick work of the 5-5 tie, taking the loss in the bottom of the ninth.
The Tigers will hope to get the taste of this defeat out of their mouths with a Justin Verlander performance on Wednesday. Verlander, who flew home early to Detroit to prepare for his game 3 start, has the Tigers’ best starter this postseason. Verlander has yet to allow an earned run—or a run of any kind, really—in his 15 IP. He’s just 6 hits and 2 walks, and has struck out 21 batters. If momentum is your next pitcher, the Tigers’ momentum isn’t looking too bad, even with this disappointing loss in the rearview mirror.
Still, though. Tonight really sucked. Tonight was Murphy’s Law incarnate. Everything that could go wrong in the late innings seemingly did.
And now we all have one day to stew on it.