Detroit Tigers prospect Matt Manning strikes out Bryce Harper in 6-4 loss to Phillies

Detroit Free Press

Evan Petzold
| Detroit Free Press

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CLEARWATER, Fla. — The Detroit Tigers lost 6-4 against the Philadelphia Phillies on Wednesday at BayCare Ballpark in Clearwater, Fla.

The Tigers dropped to 6-3 in Grapefruit League play.

What happened

Left-hander Matthew Boyd pitched three innings and allowed one run, and has a 1.80 ERA in across five innings and two games this spring. Prospect Isaac Paredes and veteran Robbie Grossman hit home runs, and 23-year-old Matt Manning tossed two innings. He struck out Bryce Harper with a 97 mph fastball. Harper went 0-for-3 with three strikeouts. Right-hander Franklin Perez, the franchise’s former top prospect, made his spring debut in the seventh inning. Outfield prospect Riley Greene hit cleanup and finished 0-for-3 with two strikeouts.

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Starting off

Boyd’s first inning featured some of his best stuff, using changeups to get weak outs against Andrew McCutchen and Jean Segura, before his slider struck out Harper swinging. His second inning, despite allowing two singles, put his fielding skills on display. He took care of a Didi Gregorius bunt and picked off Brad Miller. Boyd gave up a solo home run to Jeff Mathis in the third, but bounced back with strikeouts of McCutchen (curveball) and Harper (slider). He used 50 pitches — 31 strikes — and his fastball sat between 92-94 mph.

At the plate

Paredes’ two-run homer came on a 93.5 mph fastball in a full count. To hit the inside pitch from Spencer Howard, the 22-year-old had to adjust and pulled it 338 feet down the left-field line. Grossman, hitting from the left side, crushed his first homer of camp. Victor Reyes went 2-for-2 with one walk in his debut spring training game, and Paredes finished 1-for-3 with two RBIs. Rule 5 draft pick Akil Baddoo was hitless but drew a walk. Fighting for the backup catcher job, Eric Haase doubled to score a run in the in the sixth and singled in the ninth.

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On the mound

Right-hander Buck Farmer got the fourth inning and was shelled for four runs on three hits and one walk. He gave up homers to Miller and Luke Williams, recording two outs before he was pulled from the game. Robbie Ross Jr. got the final out with a strikeout. In the fifth, Manning struck out Segura on a curveball, the 12th pitch of the at-bat, then punched out Harper with three consecutive fastballs. Manning allowed three singles in the sixth but got bailed out by a double play. He tossed 28 pitches (22 strikes). Perez threw a scoreless seventh inning, but his command was wild and his fastball velocity maxed out at 88.9 mph. He primarily used his curveball. Lefty Tyler Alexander pitched a scoreless eighth inning, logging one strikeout.

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Infielder Ryan Kreidler made his spring debut as a defensive replacement at shortstop after recently getting added to the Tigers’ mini camp and traveling to Clearwater. He was selected in the fourth round of the 2019 draft from UCLA. Catcher Dillon Dingler batted twice as the designated hitter. He grounded out and struck out swinging. Kody Clemens entered at second base; he went 0-for-1 with a walk. Greene started in left field.

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Three stars

1. Boyd, 2. Paredes, 3. Manning.

Next up

Thursday vs. Toronto Blue Jays in Dunedin.

Evan Petzold is a sports reporter at the Detroit Free Press. Contact him at or follow him on Twitter @EvanPetzold.

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