The Tigers have had a pretty good start to the season. They swept the Twins, including back-to-back shutouts to open the season. David Price threw 8 2/3 shutout innings in his Opening Day start, while Anibal Sanchez followed up with 6 2/3 shutout innings of his own on Wednesday.
Shane Greene allowed the Tigers’ first run of the season in the seventh inning Thursday, an unearned run as a result of a Yoenis Cespedes error in left field. Alfredo Simon went into his Friday start with the Tigers’ earned run streak still intact in the series opener against the Indians.
Simon held the Indians scoreless over five innings, but finally relented in the sixth. With one out, Simon allowed back-to-back singles to Michael Bourn and Jason Kipnis before Michael Brantley doubled in a run, ending the Tigers’ streak. Carlos Santana and Brandon Moss each followed up with RBI singles, chasing Simon from the game and reducing the Tigers’ lead to 5-3.
If you’re counting, that’s 32 consecutive innings without allowing an earned run to open the season for the Tigers. That ties the 1963 Cardinals for the modern record, per MLB.com’s Jason Beck.
2019 has been one long nightmare for the Pirates. They’re in last place in the NL Central, have had multiple clubhouse fights, and can’t stop getting into bench-clearing incidents. The embarrassment continued on Sunday as the club lost 16-6 to the Cubs, suffering a three-game series sweep in Chicago.
One of those 16 runs the Pirates allowed was particularly noteworthy. In the bottom of the third inning, with the game tied at 5-5, the Cubs had runners on first and second with two outs. Tony Kemp hit a triple to right field, allowing both Ben Zobrist and Jason Heyward to score to make it 7-5. The Pirates thought one of the Cubs’ base runners didn’t touch third base on their way home. Reliever Michael Feliz attempted to make an appeal throw to third base, but it was way too high for Erik González to catch, so Kemp scored easily on the error.
The Pirates lost Friday’s game to the Cubs 17-8 and Saturday’s game 14-1. They were outscored 47-15 in the three-game series. According to Baseball Reference, since 1908, the Pirates never allowed 14+ runs in three consecutive games and only did it two games in a row twice before this series, in 1949 and in 1950. The Cubs scored 14+ in three consecutive games just one other time, in 1930.