It didn’t take long for Detroit’s Nick Maton to get back into the swing of things.
Maton, recalled from Triple-A Toledo after the All-Star break, knocked in two runs and played great defensively. Tigers defeated the host Seattle Mariners 5-4 Friday night
The streak continues Saturday, with All-Star right-handers Michael Lorenzen (3-6, 4.03 ERA) of Detroit and George Kirby (8-7, 3.09) of Seattle slated to take the mound.
Maton, who was acquired in an offseason trade with the Philadelphia Phillies, was hitting just .163 when he was demoted on June 26.
He hit .289 for the Mud Hens with two homers and 10 RBIs.
“I feel the most important thing is to regain confidence, to find success,” said Maton.
Playing second base Friday, Maton made a diving stop on a groundout hit by JP Crawford with a runner on in the fifth inning to preserve the game. Tigers‘ lead off with a run, then hit a two-run shot in the seventh that proved to be the clinching run
“Maton went down and did what we asked him to do.” Tigers manager AJ Hinch said. “He’s been a little more composed. He’s been moving around the field a little bit. I think the mental reset has been good for him and we wanted to honor our word that if we felt he did, we’d go. to bring him back into the fold.
All five of Detroit’s runs came via the long ball, with Kerry Carpenter hitting a two-run homer in the first inning and Akil Baddoo hitting a solo shot in the fifth, both off All-Star Luis Castillo.
“(It’s satisfaction) that we got a win against a quality starting pitcher and we had some really good at-bats, some good defensive plays and then we hung on at the end,” Hinch said. “Obviously I’m happy with the result. It’s good to get back up with a win and a chance to win the series (on Saturday).”
THE Sailors won their final three series before the All-Star break — against Tampa Bay, San Francisco and Houston — to get back above .500 and bolster their playoff hopes
But on Friday, they fell back into a season-long trend, going 2-8 with runners in scoring position and seven left on base. Twice they failed to bring home a runner from third base with less than two outs.
“It’s a situational thing that we’ve struggled with all year.” Sailors said manager Scott Servai. “… That’s an area we’ve talked about a lot and we haven’t been consistent in getting guys in. It’s going to come back to bite us.
“Not the way we hoped to start the farm.”
Kirby won his last two starts — against Tampa Bay and Houston — allowing just three earned runs in 13 2/3 innings. Kirby is 1-1 with a 4.00 ERA in his two previous starts against Detroit.
Lorenzen snapped a four-game losing streak in his last start, allowing three hits in five scoreless innings in a 9-0 win over visiting Oakland. He is 1-2 with an 8.16 ERA in four career appearances against Seattle, including three starts.
— Field Level Media