Tigers third baseman Miguel Cabrera homered again as he continues to inch closer to the AL home run lead, and subsequently another Triple Crown. The homer, a two-run shot off of Mets starter Dillon Gee in the first inning this afternoon, marked #42 on the season, leaving him four shy of Orioles first baseman Chris Davis, the current leader.
Cabrera leads Davis in runs batted in, 128 to 118 and has a sizable lead in batting average over Mike Trout, .360 to .328. Should Cabrera successfully pass Davis in home runs by the end of the season, he would become the third player to win multiple Triple Crowns, joining Rogers Hornsby (1922, ’25) and Ted Williams (1942, ’47). He would be the first to win two in consecutive seasons.
Behind a solid start by Rick Porcello, the Tigers brought a 4-3 lead into the top of the ninth inning before exploding for seven more runs against Mets relievers LaTroy Hawkins and Scott Atchison. With the win, the Tigers maintain their six-game lead over the Indians in the AL Central.
Jhoulys Chacin will start on Opening Day, April 3 against the Dodgers in Los Angeles, Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. It will be Chacin’s second Opening Day start, the other coming in 2013 with the Rockies against the Brewers. He’ll be the fifth different Padres pitcher in as many years to start on Opening Day.
Chacin, 29, inked a one-year, $1.75 million contract with the Padres in December. The right-hander spent the 2016 season with the Braves and Angels, compiling an aggregate 4.81 ERA with a 119/55 K/BB ratio in 144 innings.
Lin notes that Chacin will be followed in the rotation by Clayton Richard and Jered Weaver. It will be an interesting rotation, to say the least, as it will arguably be the worst in baseball.
Matt Boyd has earned the No. 5 spot in the Tigers’ starting rotation, which means veteran Anibal Sanchez will pitch out of the bullpen, MLB.com’s Jason Beck reported on Wednesday.
Boyd, 26, pitched well this spring, compiling a 2.49 ERA with a 21/0 K/BB ratio in 21 2/3 innings. The lefty’s numbers in the majors last year weren’t nearly as good.
Sanchez, 33, is coming off of the worst season of his career and overall didn’t have a great spring, putting up a 5.03 ERA with a 20/4 K/BB ratio in 19 2/3 innings. He came on strong at the end, however, tossing 14 consecutive scoreless innings. Manager Brad Ausmus didn’t rule out the possibility of Sanchez returning to the rotation at some point.