Detroit Tigers walk all over Toronto Blue Jays
By Bob Elliott, Toronto Sun
|Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Rocky Romero (R) heads for the the dug-out after being taken out of the game by Blue Jays manager John Farrell in Detroit, Michigan August 21, 2012. (Reuters/REBECCA COOK)
DETROIT - Brad Lincoln was warming up in the Toronto Blue Jays bullpen in second inning.
Lincoln was up warming again in the sixth.
That’s how bad a night it was for lefty Ricky Romero on Tuesday.
Romero went to the mound six times -- only twice as many times as pitching coach Bruce Walton, who made mound visits in the first, second and again in the sixth innings ... enough trips to charge for mileage.
That’s what kind of night it was for Romero on a Mo-Town Melt down kind off night.
The Jays’ opening day starter walked a career-high eight Detroit Tigers, who beat the Jays 5-3 before 39,499 fans at Comerica Park.
“I’m the guy that lost the game, I sucked,” Romero told reporters. “It’s baffling, it keeps going on and on and on and on.”
Romero battled his release point, struggled staying over the rubber and was unable to repeat his delivery from start to finish. He was headed for the showers after 5 1/3 innings allowing five runs on seven hits and eight walks. And for only the second time in his 119 career starts did he not strike out a man.
In losing his 10th straight, Romero’s ERA jumped to 5.63 after allowing 15 base runners while retiring 16 hitters.
“We’re not to the point where we’ve thrown our hands up in the air,” said manager John Farrell, who looked like he was getting ready to stretch.
Wild one I: After allowing a lead-off single to Austin Jackson, Romero walked three straight with two out forcing in a run. He walked Prince Fielder on four pitches, Jhonny Peralta on eight pitches after getting ahead 0-2 and Delmon Young on four straight balls ... For the Tigers one run on one hit ... “The key is throwing strikes, the key is getting the guy out,” Romero said. “I didn’t do that.”
Wild one II: Romero issued a free one to Andy Dirks on four pitches, walked No. 9 hitter Gerald Laird on a 3-2 pitch on the seventh pitch of the at-bat. After a broken-bat single by Jackson he walked Omar Infante on four pitches. A double play ball made it 3-0 ... For the Tigers two runs on one hit.
Wild one III: After not giving a free one since Infante in the second, Romero walked Jeff Baker on five pitches opening the sixth and allowed a single to Dirks and Laird walked on five pitches. With one out Infante reached infield single, which should have been an out and a fly ball made it 5-1 ... For the Tigers two runs on two singles ... “Ricky couldn’t get his release point down, then he righted the ship,” said Farrell. “There has been a lot of discussion about that,” said Farrell of Romero’s release point.
Zero progress: Both Jose Bautista and Adam Lind were supposed to be in the lineup for class-A Dunedin in the Tampa Tuesday. The game was rained out. They’ll play in a simulated game Wednesday and then fly to double-A New Hampshire ... Since Brett Lawrie awoke with discomfort in his rib cage Monday after three at-bats Sunday he has been shut down for a week. Could Lawrie be shut down for the remainder of the season? “We haven’t come to that point in time yet. We can’t rule anything out at this point.”
In Game: A Jeff Mathis double and Davis being hit by a pitch brought the potential lead run to the plate in the ninth. Colby Ramus was hitless extending his hitless streak to 22 at-bats and Edwin Encarnacion fanned ... The Jays David Cooper fielded a roller off the bat of Infante, looked home and then decided to beat Infante to the bag in the sixth. He lost the race ... Cooper had two doubles and knocked in a run, Yunel Escobar also knocked in a run in the eighth ... Third baseman Omar Vizquel had two fine plays on slow rollers to end innings with a man on base and was charged with an error throwing away Austin Jackson’s infield hit in the first ...
Eight more Ks: “Whether it’s because of our inexperience pitchers have attacked us,” said Farrell before Max Scherzer faced the Jays. “All three starters this series have strikeout capabilities.” ... Scherzer fanned eight Jays in seven innings, including Kelly Johnson three times and Anthony Gose twice. He has a career-high 186 strikeouts ... Anibel Sanchez pitches Wednesday against Detroit’s defending Cy Young award winner Justin Verlander Thursday ... “As hitters we have to force pitchers to pitch out of the zone,” said Farrell. “With the young players they don’t always have the plate discipline.”