|Tigers' bats coming to life against White Sox|
Nicholas Castellanos and Miguel Cabrera showed signs of life at the plate Thursday afternoon, a major development for the Detroit Tigers' offense.
Castellanos and Cabrera combined for five hits, four RBIs and two runs scored in the Tigers' 9-7 victory over the Chicago White Sox on Thursday. The Central Division rivals will continue their four-game series on Friday night in Detroit.
The Tigers' run total was a season high. They were held to four or fewer runs in 15 of their first 17 games.
Both players are still looking for their first home runs this season. Castellanos had driven in just two runs before doubling that output on Thursday.
"Everybody has to get involved but those are our big guys right there in the middle and we need them to pick us up," manager Ron Gardenhire said. "That's what they'll do when they get going. It's really going to be fun to watch and today was a good start. Some other guys had some pretty good at-bats, too, but it's really nice to see those two guys pick us up."
Castellanos was the team's biggest offensive threat last season with 23 homers, 89 RBIs and a .298 average. Cabrera played only 38 games last season before he suffered a ruptured biceps tendon.
"He's happy right now," Gardenhire said of Cabrera. "He's enjoying getting to play and getting to swing. He'll find it. Just got to give him time because he missed so much time."
The need for Castellanos and Cabrera to perk up became even more imperative when the Tigers placed Christin Stewart on the 10-day injured list on Thursday with a quad injury. Stewart has a team-high three homers and 13 RBIs.
Detroit's starter on Friday, Jordan Zimmermann (0-2, 4.29 ERA), is coming off his worst outing this season. He allowed five runs on eight hits in three innings to Minnesota on Sunday. Zimmermann has been tagged for four home runs in his last two starts.
He's 6-4 with a 5.81 ERA in 13 career starts against the White Sox. He started five times against them last season and posted a 1-2 record and 7.11 ERA.
Jose Abreu (two homers, .435) and Yonder Alonso (four homers in 18 at-bats) have been tough outs for Zimmermann.
Left-hander Carlos Rodon (2-2, 3.27 ERA), the White Sox's scheduled starter, won his last outing. He limited the New York Yankees to two runs on three hits in six innings on Sunday.
Rodon has yet to allow a home run in 22 innings this season. He's 1-2 with a 6.00 ERA in four career starts against Detroit.
The White Sox hit three home runs on Thursday, including the third of the season from rookie outfielder Eloy Jimenez. Shortstop Tim Anderson continued his hot start with two hits and two runs. He is batting .422.
The talk around the team continued to regard Anderson's bat flip on Wednesday against Kansas City after he hit a two-run homer. He was plunked in his next at-bat by Brad Keller, leading to a benches-clearing incident.
Anderson said he won't hesitate to fling his bat in the future.
"That's what my teammates want," Anderson told MLB.com. "It brings a lot of spark to the team and a lot of energy. I think nothing bad on my end."
--Field Level Media