Tigers Short Hops: Game 4
Contest slips away late due to a number of miscues
ST. LOUIS -- Fielding the Tigers' World Series Game 4 loss to the Cardinals on a short hop ...
In < 25 words ...
Helped by an error, a wild pitch and a misplay in the outfield, Fernando Rodney and Joel Zumaya allowed three runs in the late innings.
David Eckstein hit a routine fly ball to right-center leading off the seventh, but Curtis Granderson fell down and the Cardinals shortstop had a double. So Taguchi followed with a sac bunt, but Rodney tossed the throw over Placido Polanco, who was covering first, allowing Eckstein to score and tie the game at 3.
4 -- The number of errors by Detroit pitchers during the first four games, a World Series record. Zumaya's miscue in Game 3 provided the final margin, and Rodney's throwing error tied the score in Game 4.
Sean Casey, with some support from Carlos Guillen, was the main difference-maker. His second-inning homer provided early offense off National League Championship Series MVP Jeff Suppan and gave the Tigers an early lead. Casey also tallied another run with a third-inning RBI single.
Sense of October
Manager Jim Leyland wanted to use his greatest strength -- a terrific bullpen -- as soon as possible. Starter Jeremy Bonderman was tossing a solid game, but Leyland pulled him after he allowed two runs over 5 1/3 innings and threw 92 pitches. It marked just the third time in Bonderman's last 19 starts that he lasted fewer than 93 pitches, and it was the second time since July 1 that he permitted two runs in a start and didn't work six innings.
Lines of the Game
4 AB, 3 H, 2B
Comment: Pudge, hitting .000 in the World Series, provided three hits, including an eighth-inning double, after which he scored on Brandon Inge's two-bagger that tied the game at 4.
1 2/3 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 0 ER, 4 K, BB
Comment: Rodney actually pitched very well, but the two unearned runs changed the contest.
Spoken: "We're all angry. We made too many mistakes, and that's why we lost." -- Zumaya
Facing elimination, the Tigers will turn to Justin Verlander in an all-important Game 5.
Conor Nicholl is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.