Anthony Rendon hit a one-out grounder through the left side and Nate McLouth doubled to left field in the next at bat to bring the Nats' second baseman in to make it 1-0 in the first in this afternoon's Grapefruit League matchup in Lakeland, Florida's Joker Marchant Stadium.
Taylor Jordan, 25, made his fourth appearance of the spring in today's game, having thrown seven innings before today in which he allowed eight hits and three runs but no walks while striking out nine batters.
Jordan collected his tenth K of the spring on a called strike three on Miguel Cabrera, who questioned home plate umpire Andy Fletcher's call, and the Nats' right-hander completed a scoreless bottom of the first when Tyler Moore made a diving play at first to rob Tigers' first baseman Victor Martinez of a hit. 1-0 Nationals after one.
Another backwards K and the second groundout of the day got Taylor Jordan two quick outs in the Tigers' second, but third baseman Nick Castellanos doubled off the top of the left field wall in the third at bat of the home-half of the inning. Rajai Davis took a fastball on the hands, as the Nats' starter put two runners on, but another groundout, this one off shortstop Hernan Perez's bat, got Jordan through two scoreless.
Porcello retired the Nationals in order in a quick, 1-2-3 third, bringing Jordan right back out to the mound. Ian Kinsler hit a ground-rule double over the left field fence on a hop in the first at bat of the Tigers' half of the frame. Torii Hunter's double to right on an 0-2 pitch from Jordan in the next AB brought the tying run in to make it a 1-1 game.
Hunter took second base on what was described by Detroit's radio announcers as an ill-advised/poorly-executed throw in from right field by Nate McLouth, took third on a groundout to second by Miguel Cabrera and then scored the go-ahead run on a one-out RBI single to right by Victor Martinez. 2-1 Tigers. Martinez moved up on a groundout and then scored when Austin Jackson doubled to left to make it 3-1. Nick Castellanos' second hit of the game off Jordan brought Martinez in and after five hits and four runs in the third, Jordan and the Nationals trailed 4-1.
Nate McLouth singled, stole second and took third on a one-out groundout in the Nationals' fourth. Then Tyler Moore stepped in against Rick Porcello with two down...
Matt Williams' pregame quote:
"I think Tyler Moore is really close. It's taken him a while to get going, but his at bats yesterday were really good. We'll continue to give him more and more to make sure he's ready."
... Tyler Moore's first home run of the spring was a two-run line drive home run to left off Porcello that got the Nationals back within one run, 4-3 Tigers.
Luis Ayala took over for the Nats in the bottom of the fourth and got knocked around by the Tigers, who got a single from Ian Kinsler, an RBI double by Torii Hunter and then three-straight base hits by Miguel Cabrera, Victor Martinez and Alex Avila that got the Tigers out to a 6-3 lead. An RBI groundout by Austin Jackson made it 7-3 Tigers. Nick Castellanos battled for 12 pitches in a two-out at bat against Ayala and singled under a diving Zach Walters at short to bring in the Tigers' eighth run of the game. 8-3 Detroit. Rajai Davis hit a single off side-arming lefty Zach Jackson after the reliever took over for Ayala, and the Tigers went up 9-3 after four.
Zach Walters singled off Rick Porcello and scored on an RBI triple to right field by Jamey Carroll, who sliced a liner by a "drawn-in outfield" as the Tigers' radio team described it. 9-4 Tigers. Porcello out. Anthony Rendon's RBI groundout off Phil Coke made it 9-5, but the Tigers' left-hander got out of the inning without further damage.
Drew Storen gave up back-to-back one-out singles, a double steal and a two-out base loading walk in the Tigers' fifth, but got a fly to right from Austin Jackson to end a scoreless inning of relief work.
Mike Gonzalez made his debut with the Nationals after signing a minor league deal and he gave up two runs on a single, RBI triple and sac fly in the eighth as the Tigers took a 12-6 lead.
That's how it ended...