(Sports Network) - Big things were expected from the Toronto Blue Jays this
season. Unfortunately, they are off to their worst start in nine years. On
Wednesday, the Blue Jays play the middle test of a three-game set against the
Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park.
Toronto's early season struggles continued in Tuesday's opener, as Miguel
Cabrera went 4-for-5 with a three-run homer, four RBI and three runs scored to
power Detroit to a 7-3 win.
Torii Hunter added three hits to reach 2,000 for his career, while Alex Avila
had a solo homer and Prince Fielder and Matt Tuiasosopo each knocked in a run
in the win for the Tigers.
Anibal Sanchez (1-0) allowed two runs on five hits while striking out eight
over seven innings to get the win.
"This lineup, it's amazing," Sanchez said. "That's why I took the decision to
come back here. I know that we have a pretty good team. I know that right now
we have Victor (Martinez) out, but if you put out that lineup, I think
everybody has to play harder. They have to play hard with us."
Colby Rasmus hit a solo homer for the Blue Jays, who fell to 2-5 on the young
season. It is their worst start since opening the 2004 campaign 2-6.
"You look at it, we've played seven games, where everything's magnified, the
focus on us and things like that," manager John Gibbons said. "That's what
makes it tough.
"But we have a good ballclub, we'll snap out of it. It would be nice to get
one of these games and throw three or four runs up in the first inning, and
that makes things easier on the pitchers, too."
Brandon Morrow (0-1) gave up five runs on nine hits over 3 2/3 innings for
Toronto, which started a six-game road trip on Tuesday.
A big reason behind the Blue Jays' slow start is the fact that their starters
have pitched to a 6.08 ERA in the first seven games. Lefty Mark Buehrle
contributed to that inflated number in his initial start and will be on the
Buehrle did not get a decision against Cleveland on Thursday, but was roughed
up to the tune of six runs and seven hits in 5 1/3 frames. He only walked one
batter, but hit two more in his team's 10-8 win.
"I think the biggest thing I'm frustrated about is going out there after we
just scored three runs to take a 6-3 lead, go out there and walk the leadoff
guy, hit a guy, put yourself in a jam," Buehrle said. "That's unacceptable. I
need to do a better job, but I just got behind in counts and guys got base
hits and the next thing you know it's a tie game.
"But I thank some of the guys on offense for picking me up and there will be a
day when I pick them up when we don't score many runs and hopefully I can hold
the opponent down and we can win that game."
After spending the first 12 years of his career in the American League Central
with the Chicago White Sox before signing with the Miami Marlins last season,
the Tigers are, of course, no stranger to Buehrle. In 34 games (33 starts) he
is 18-10 against them with a 3.36 ERA.
Rick Porcello failed to carry his solid spring into the regular season on
Thursday, as he lost his debut to the Minnesota Twins. Porcello gave up three
runs and six hits in 5 1/3 innings of that one.
Porcello has faced the Blue Jays five times and is 2-3 with a 4.50 ERA.
Toronto lost four of six matchups with Detroit a season ago.
The Sports Network