Skubal snaps losing streak, Tigers beat Mariners 6-2
SEATTLE (AP) — Tarik Skubal struck out a career-high nine in his first win of the season, Harold Castro drove in three runs and the Detroit Tigers beat the Seattle Mariners 6-2 on Wednesday night.
Skubal (1-6) scattered four hits over five innings, showing emotion at key points as he helped Detroit earn its first series sweep in Seattle since April 2006.
“He’s got to pitch with a little edge and a little anger at times and he came out hot today,” Tigers manager A.J. Hinch said.
With the sweep, which included Spencer Turnbull’s no-hitter on Tuesday night, Detroit has won four of its last five and eight of 10. The Mariners had nine hits against Tigers pitchers in the three-game series with 29 strikeouts.
Hinch said the key for Detroit was “leveraged counts,” as pitchers got ahead of the fastball-loving Mariners.
“Hitting’s tough and it’s tougher when you’re behind,” Hinch said.
Skubal’s only mistakes came in the first inning when he gave up a two-run homer to Kyle Seager following a walk to Kyle Lewis. It was Seager’s 84th home run at T-Mobile Park, a new record.
“This is a start I’ll remember,” Skubal said. “I spent a lot of time here and went through a lot here.”
Daniel Norris, José Cisnero, Michael Fulmer and Gregory Soto each pitched an inning to complete the five-hitter.
Castro made it 5-2 with a two-run single in the fourth inning. He had three hits and added a run-scoring single in the ninth.
Eric Haase, Wilson Ramos and Nomar Mazara also drove in runs as the Tigers built a 3-2 lead, chasing rookie starter Logan Gilbert (0-2). Gilbert, pressed into service with three opening-day starters on the injured list, gave up three hits with two walks and two strikeouts in 2 2/3 innings in his second start.
“He didn’t have his A game tonight as far as his secondary pitches,” Mariners manager Scott Servais said.
Tigers: C Grayson Greiner (left hamstring strain) is commuting between Detroit and Triple-A Toledo as he rehabs his injured hamstring, Hinch said. He’s running and resumed catching activities, and could see a rehab assignment in a week or so. Hinch said LHP Derek Holland (left shoulder strain) is also close to making a rehab appearance.
2B Willi Castro left the game with a left elbow bruise. He was hit by a pitch from Will Vest in the third inning. Hinch said his status is day to day and he’ll get at least two days rest. The Tigers are off Thursday and Hinch said he’s unlikely to play Friday due to matchup.
Mariners: 2B/OF Dylan Moore was put on the 10-day injured list with a strained calf, an injury the team hopes isn’t serious. The calf had been bothering him for a few days, Servais said, “and there was some concern that it just wasn’t clearing up as quick as they’d hoped.”
INF/DH Ty France (strained wrist) picked up a bat Wednesday for the first time since going to the IL. He did not take batting practice, but is progressing in his recovery. “We’re cautiously optimistic we can get him back as soon as possible, but we want to be smart there and don’t rush it,” Servais said.
Tigers: RHP José Ureña (1-4, 4.22) returns to the lineup at the Kansas City Royals on Friday. He’s making the start on time after leaving early in his last appearance when he took a line drive off his lower leg on May 15.
Mariners: RHP Chris Flexen (4-1, 3.46) goes for his fourth straight win when Seattle visits the San Diego Padres on Friday.
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