Niko Goodrum was forced to leave Friday’s game against the Los Angeles Angels due to a nasty finger injury. Jose Urena’s outing was simply ugly.
A couple of troubling issues surfaced during the Detroit Tigers’ 11-3 loss. Goodrum might be out for awhile after suffering a left index finger sprain diving after Phil Gosselin’s single in the sixth.
“I’m expecting it to be an injured list (stint) but I don’t know the extent of it right now,” Tigers manager AJ Hinch said of Goodrum’s injury.
The Tigers defense at shortstop has been subpar this season, with Hinch using a handful of players at that spot. Goodrum has received the most playing time, but Willi Castro, Harold Castro, Isaac Paredes and Zack Short have all taken turns there. Paredes or Short could be called up again from Triple-A Toledo if Goodrum lands on the IL.
“Obviously, we need more consistent play and the shortstop position is a premium position, I get that,” Hinch said. “We’ve tried a lot of guys and we’re going to continue to try the guys we have and see how much better we can make everybody.”
Hinch can’t do much regarding Urena except keep sending him to the mound every fifth day and hope for better results. Urena has given up seven earned runs in each of his past two starts. He lasted 1⅔ innings against the Chicago Cubs last Saturday. He surrendered three homers in the fifth inning Friday before Hinch summoned the bullpen.
Urena has allowed 17 earned runs in 11 innings over three June starts after a short stint on the 10-day IL due to a right forearm strain.
“They put some really good swings on him,” Hinch said. “They beat us in every facet. It wasn’t just all Jose Urena. I know he gave up some damage there, especially that last inning. He just hasn’t been executing at the same rate that he was prior to his injury, so it was obviously a frustrating night for him.”
Urena insists he’s fine physically. He hasn’t been able to command his assortment of sinkers, changeups and sliders the way he did in late April and early May, when he reeled off four consecutive seven-inning outings.
He issued a walk in the second and another in the third and both runners scored.
The Angels then unleashed their power and forced Urena’s exit. Luis Rengifo blasted a sinker that hung over the plate for his first homer this season. Shohei Ohtani hit a two-run homer on a fastball, the first of his two long balls on the night.
“That was a pretty good pitch inside,” Urena said.
Jared Walsh clobbered a Urena changeup for a home run to end his night.
The starting staff has been depleted by injuries to Matthew Boyd and Spencer Turnbull and they’ll be out multiple weeks. Urena is the lone remaining veteran on a staff that now features rookies Casey Mize, Tarik Skubal and Matt Manning. Hinch is using a variety of bullpen arms in the fifth slot for the time being, with Wily Peralta getting his turn Saturday.
Urena will return to the mound Thursday when Houston comes to Detroit.
“Back to the drawing board for when he gets the ball in five days,” Hinch said.