Thursday, April 11, 2013 4:24 pm
Tigers rout Blue Jays 11-1 in the cold
By NOAH TRISTERAP Baseball Writer
Doug Fister (2-0) allowed a run and eight hits in eight innings for Detroit. Johnson (0-1) allowed six runs and seven hits in 1 1-3 innings - the shortest start of his career.
Prince Fielder had four RBIs and Torii Hunter added three for the Tigers.
The temperature at game time was 35 degrees - the coldest for a Detroit home game since 1996, according to STATS.
The Blue Jays have not lived up to expectations early because of poor pitching. Their starters are now 1-4 with a 7.59 ERA.
Detroit manager Jim Leyland said before the game he was looking forward to his team's upcoming road trip out west, but the Tigers didn't let the rough weather slow them. In fact, they looked ready to run. Cabrera caught Toronto napping in the first, stealing third before Johnson even started his pitching motion. Victor Martinez's RBI single made it 1-0.
Mark DeRosa tied it with a sacrifice fly, but Johnson got only one out in the second. That was Omar Infante's sacrifice fly that made it 2-1. Austin Jackson and Hunter followed with consecutive RBI singles, Cabrera's triple brought home another run, and Fielder added a run-scoring single to chase Johnson.
Toronto, a chic pick to win the AL East after acquiring Johnson, Jose Reyes and R.A. Dickey in the offseason, has lost three straight series to start the year for the first time since 1978. The Blue Jays lost four straight series to start that season.
The Tigers blew a 6-1 lead in an 8-6 loss to Toronto on Wednesday, but they had no trouble holding on this time. Jackson had three hits and three runs for Detroit. He's reached base in all nine games this year.
Nobody seemed too interested in standing around in the cold. When the Blue Jays made another pitching change in the fifth, only six Toronto players remained out on the field, including the catcher and incoming pitcher. The two Tigers who were on base came off as well.
Shortly after play resumed, Hunter hit a two-run single and Fielder added a two-run double.
Fielder's sacrifice fly in the seventh made it 11-1.
NOTES: Fister struck out five and walked one. ... Detroit had 16 hits. ... The Tigers still haven't made an error this season. ... Johnson's shortest previous start was 2 2-3 innings at San Diego last season. ... The Tigers hosted a game in 34-degree weather on April 9, 1996, against Seattle at old Tiger Stadium. ... Detroit plays at Oakland on Friday night in a rematch of last year's AL Division Series, won by the Tigers in five games. Detroit RHP Max Scherzer (1-0) faces Oakland RHP Bartolo Colon (1-0). ... Toronto is at Kansas City on Friday night. The Blue Jays send LHP J.A. Happ (1-0) to the mound against RHP Luis Mendoza (0-0).