Tigers struggling early to control opponents’ running game

Detroit News

Detroit — Tigers pitching coach Chris Fetter was in the middle of the infield Wednesday, about three hours before game time, having an animated, mostly one-sided conversation with his pitching staff.

The topic, controlling the run game.

The Yankees stole four bases against the Tigers Tuesday night, two of them without a throw, two of them led to runs. Coming into the game Wednesday, opponents are nine for nine in stolen base attempts, seven for seven against catcher Tucker Barnhart.

The Yankees stole another base Wednesday, third base by Anthony Rizzo, before Barnhart threw out D.J. LeMahieu at second in the eighth.

“We haven’t been good at it,” manager AJ Hinch said. “So if you’re not good at it, you have to address it.”

The pitchers went through a series of pick-off drills at second and first base.

“It’s not so much about the actual picks that we did today,” Hinch said. “It’s the awareness of how the game can change quickly if you don’t pay attention to every facet of the game. Our guys’ pickoff moves are fine. That’s not what controls the running game in the big leagues.”

Wojo: Wind and cold can’t dampen Miggy’s joyful march to 3,000

Hinch said it was more about pace and varying times to home plate.

“It’s not falling into the trap of being 1.6 or 1.7 (seconds to the plate) with average or slightly above average runners at first base,” he said. “It’s having a calmness about you. You can’t practice that at 2 p.m. But you can bring an awareness to a group by having a fundamental review.”

Hinch said he wasn’t concerned about Barnhart’s throwing arm, though a couple of his throws have been spiked this year.

“He’s fine,” Hinch said. “He’s been an inch or two from throwing out a couple of different guys. We haven’t been good at it, but it doesn’t define us or what we’re doing.”


Twitter: @cmccosky

We’re offering a great rate on digital subscriptions. Click here.

Articles You May Like

Detroit Free Press Voice Briefing Monday June 17, 2024
Talking about Detroit Tigers’ young hitters, volatile offense with Bobby L. Scales II
Huge games from Jake Holton and Jose De La Cruz power the SeaWolves and Flying Tigers
Game Preview: Detroit Tigers at Atlanta Braves for 3-game weekday set
Astros 4, Tigers 1: From feast to famine

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *