Bashing Blue Jays put a 10-1 hurt on Tigers in opener

Detroit News

Detroit — No need for a video dissection from Jomboy Media on this one.

Whether Tigers rookie Elvin Rodriguez was tipping his pitches, as Jomboy picked up on in New York last Friday, is immaterial. Major League hitters will generally have success against pitches over the heart of the plate, whether they know what’s coming or not.

The Toronto Blue Jays hit three home runs off Rodriguez in the second inning and cruised to a 10-1 romp over the Tigers on a damp, rainy Friday night at Comerica Park.

Already up 2-0, Lourdes Gurriel, Jr., hit a center-cut fastball 407 feet over the bullpen in left-center field. After a walk to Cavan Biggio, George Springer launched one 383 feet to left center. Bo Bichette followed with a 373-footer to left.

After two innings, the average exit velocity on balls put in play against Rodriguez was over 100 mph. At that point he’d given up nine home runs in 18 big-league innings.

Rodriguez worked into the fifth and ended up with eight runs and eight hits on his ledger. He allowed 18 runs in the last two starts.

BOX SCORE: Blue Jays 10, Tigers 1

With Eduardo Rodriguez expected to be activated off the injured list this week, it is possible this was Elvin Rodriguez’s last start for the Tigers for a while.

Springer had three hits and was a triple shy of a cycle. Alejandro Kirk had two hits and two RBIs. Bichette had a double and a homer and Gurriel contributed  a homer, double and two RBIs.

Tigers outfielder Robbie Grossman, in his first game back off the injured list, left the game in eighth inning after fouling an 0-2 pitch off the inside of his right knee.

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It happened in the middle of the Tigers only threat against Toronto starter Jose Berrios, who’d allowed three hits through seven innings.

Spencer Torkelson and Derek Hill singled around a walk to Tucker Barnhart in the eighth. After Grossman fouled the ball off his leg, Willi Castro inherited the at-bat and delivered a sacrifice fly to deep right-center field.

The game was delayed for 26 minutes by harder-than-expected rain fall with two outs in the bottom of the third.

chris.mccosky@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @cmccosky

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