Smyly was dominant. He was so dominant that he had a negative FIP for the game. He racked up 11 strikeouts in 5.2 IP, and allowed 2 runs on 4 hits and 1 walk. He certainly deserved a better fate than his teammates’ lackluster performance against Tyler Skaggs. He certainly deserved better than a loss.
It’s disappointing because the Tigers had Skaggs on the ropes and couldn’t put him away. When a base hit might have emptied the bases and padded a 1-0 Tigers lead in the 6th, Torii Hunter floundered and struck out swinging on three pitches to end the threat.
The Angels came back in the bottom of the 6th and scored two runs off Smyly to put the game away, essentially, on an Efren Navarro base hit (with two strikes). The left-handed Navarro was only in the game because Josh Hamilton left with knee soreness. Al Alburquerque came in to help the Tigers sneak out of the inning with the one-run deficit intact, but all the damage Anaheim needed had been done.
A succession of Angels relievers sent the Tigers down without much of an uprising, and Huston Street closed the game down for the 2-1 Angels win.
Justin Verlander (9-8, 1.45 WHIP) starts tomorrow for the Tigers. Matt Shoemaker (7-3, 1.30 WHIP) starts for the Angels. Game time is at 9:05pm.