Instead of starting game 5, Max Scherzer came on as a reliever to save the Detroit Tigers from having their season ended by the Oakland A’s, getting out of a jam to help his team pull off the 8-6 win, tying the series at 2-2, sending us to a decider back in Oakland.
Scherzer came on in the 7th for his first relief appearance since the 2011 postseason, and managed to come out of a bases loaded, non-out jam he put himself in during the eight inning, getting the win to his name.
It was the 7th time in his career that he faced loaded bases, with nobody out. It was the first time he came out of the situation without any runs scored. The Tigers were the only American League team during the regular season not to get out of a bases loaded, nobody out situation, allowing at least one run all 10 times. The last time Tigers pitching got out of a bases loaded, no out situation was April 12, 2012, and Scherzer ended a 29-time streak for that situation.
The Tigers were always chasing in this game, tying things up for the first time through a three-run homer by Johnny Peralta in the fifth inning, followed by a solo homer from Victor Martinez in the 7th, which caused quite an uproar. It seemed like Josh Reddick had a shot at getting the ball, but fans interrupted with the play, reaching over the railing to catch the ball. The officials looked at the replay, but decided there was no fan interference on the play, giving the Tigers their fourth run of the night, which they later capitalized on to further their scoring spree.
I have no doubt I was going to catch that ball. When I looked at the replay, that’s what I thought. It’s really frustrating that a fan can affect the outcome of a play.
With the Tigers ahead 5-4, he allowed a walk and a double to start the inning. But after an intentional walk to load the bases, Leyland still kept him on the mound, and was rewarded for his faith. He struck out Reddick who took a swing at what would have been a ball four. He struck out Stephen Vogt as well, before getting a lucky bounce from Alberto Callapso with one of his line drives being called a foul, although it was quite close.
The A’s miss out on another opportunity to close out a series, going 1-10 with a chance to clinch since 2000, worse only then the Cincinnati Reds who are 0-4 over that time span.