When: 1:35 p.m. Sunday.
Where: Comerica Park in Detroit.
TV: Bally Sports Detroit.
Radio: WXYT-FM (97.1; Tigers radio affiliates).
Tigers lineup: TBA.
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Game notes: Not every deadline fire sale pays off — see the Tigers from 2015-22 — but some do. Like, say, the Nats’ shipment of Max Scherzer and Trea Turner to the Dodgers in 2021 for a package that included catcher Keibert Ruiz and right-hander Josiah Gray.
Gray, in particular, is showing some front-of-the-rotation skills this season, with a near-elite slider. That pitch, which he has thrown on 29.5% of his 875 pitches this season, has a minus-6 run value so far in 2023, good for ninth in the majors. It’s run value per 100 pitches is minus 2.3, which is almost twice as effective as it was last season (minus-1.4). But the secret behind his improvement from a 5.02 ERA last year to 2.73 this year could actually be his four-seam fastball, which he has thrown 28% of the time this season, after using it 39.2% in 2022. That four-seamer was mostly awful last year, with a run value per 100 pitches of 2.2; that’s down to 0.6 in 2023. That’s still not good — his total run value of plus-1 ranks 258th — but it could be enough against a Tigers team that hits .233 against sliders (eighth in the majors entering Saturday and 14 points higher than the league average) and .235 against four-seamers, which is better than only four teams and a full 30 points below the league average.
For the Tigers, lefty Joey Wentz’s four-seamer could use some work, too. It was passable last season, with a minus-0.4 run value per 100 pitches, and so he could throw it 55.1% of the time. This year, however, he’s throwing it about a mile per hour faster (from 92.4 to 93.7 mph) and, accordingly, it has lost about half an inch of both vertical and horizontal movement, resulting in a plus-2.3 run value per 100 pitches (though he’s only throwing it 46.4% of the time). The Nats’ .287 batting average on four-seamers ranks seventh in the majors, while their average vs. two-seam fastballs — cutters — is just .267, 16th out of 30 teams.
After today’s finale, the Tigers head west to Kansas City, Missouri, for a three-game set against the AL Central cellar-dwelling Royals, who are somehow worse at home (6-17) than on the road (8-16), on Monday-Wednesday. The Nats, meanwhile, get Monday off before the scuffling Padres — featuring former Nationals star Juan Soto — come to town for three games on Tuesday-Thursday.
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This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Detroit Tigers game score vs. Washington Nationals: Time, TV
Source: Yahoo Sports