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Solid Defense Not Enough to Lift Tigers over Reds


Written by: Bill Martin
Wednesday, May 4, 2005

The Detroit Tigers Rookie League team, despite a solid defensive effort, lost to the power-hitting Cincinnati Reds last night, 19-8. The Reds jumped to a 5-0 on the strength of their team speed. The Tigers used good fundamentals to make solid plays to attempt to stop the Reds in the first two innings, headed by Alec Sozio behind the plate, Michael Isle on the mound and Jake Askin at first, but the speed of the Reds beat out several plays, leading to an early 10-3 deficit. The Tigers looked almost asleep, until the arrival of assistant coach Frank Canuso who charged them up with a rally call. "We need a little energy, boys---bring it in here!" said Canuso, and the Tigers responded. A third inning rally behind consecutive hits by Jack Sanborn, Griffin Foster, James DeLaurentis and Ryan Simalchik got the Tigers right back into the game, 15-6. Billy Martin and Louis Sarandoulias, who were the only bright spots in the Tigers cold-hitting lineup, Martin going 4-4 with 4 RBIs and Sarandoulias going 3-4, tried hard to get the Tigers back into the game. When the tigers could only manage a score by Max Isles to closed the score to 19-8, it seemed as though the game could get out of reach. The Reds seemed unstoppable at the plate at that point, until a fantastic play by Matthew Canuso at third, catching a fly ball and nearly turning the double play, ignited the Tigers defense. From that point on, the Reds failed to score another run. The Tigers entered the last of the 5th with a chance to win, and an attitude that nothing would stop them. It took a diving play at first by Zack Vanderschmidt to seal the game for the Reds. After the game, Coach Martin was very proud of his team: "After we started so slowly, I thought they might give up on us. But I was really proud that they hustled, cheered and did whatever was needed to try to win. That is good team baseball." The Tigers play Saturday at 9:00 a.m., looking for their second win of the year.

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