Detroit Tigers win nightcap to earn doubleheader split with Pittsburgh Pirates

The Tigers’ Niko Goodrum, right, throws to first base to complete a double play as the Pittsburgh Pirates’ Kevin Newman slides into second base in the fifth inning of the first game of their doubleheader in Detroit on Wednesday. (AP photo)


Associated Press

DETROIT — The Pittsburgh Pirates were hoping to get to .500 for the season on Wednesday.

Instead, they’ll have to wait.

Tyler Anderson pitched five strong innings to help Pittsburgh beat the Detroit Tigers 3-2 Wednesday in a doubleheader opener.

Detroit rallied for a 5-2 win in the second game behind Jonathan Schoop’s go-ahead home run in a three-run fifth inning, leaving the Pirates at 8-10 following a 1-6 start.

The teams played the doubleheader of seven-inning games under pandemic rules after Tuesday night’s game was postponed on a snowy day in the Detroit area. There was still a white dusting on top of the bushes beyond the wall in center field Wednesday, plus some flurries late in the opener. Temperature at game time was 40 degrees, but Anderson didn’t seem too preoccupied with that.

“The dugouts are fine,” he said. “Not too bad in the dugouts.”

Spencer Turnbull (1-0) allowed one run and two hits in five innings to win the second game, his season debut after recovering from COVID-19. Gregory Soto pitched the seventh for his second save.

Miguel Yajure (0-1) gave up four runs and hour hits in 4 2/3 innings in his Pirates debut.

Erik Gonzalez hit an RBI double in the first, but Niko Goodrum’s leadoff homer tied the score in the third.

After Schoop’s homer, rookie Akil Baddoo had a run-scoring double for his 12th RBI and Willi Castro singled in a run off David Bednar. Left fielder Bryan Reynolds made a diving catch of Robbie Grossman’s sinking liner for the second out.

Phillip Evans homered off Bryan Garcia for a 4-2 lead in the sixth. Harold Castro hit an RBI single in the bottom half.

In the first game, Pittsburgh scored all its runs in the fourth inning after Michael Fulmer (1-1) retired the Pirates in order through the first three.

Anderson (2-2) allowed two runs and three hits with two walks and seven strikeouts. Kyle Crick worked a perfect sixth, and Richard Rodriguez retired the Tigers in order in the seventh and final inning for his second save.

Victor Reyes doubled in the third and scored on Robbie Grossman’s sacrifice fly.

The Pirates answered immediately. Adam Frazier, Evans and Reynolds started the fourth with consecutive singles, the last one driving in Frazier. Evans scored on Colin Moran’s groundout, and Gonzalez added an RBI single one out later.

Schoop hit an RBI single for Detroit with two outs in the bottom of the inning.

Fulmer allowed three runs and four hits in four innings.


Detroit recalled INF Zack Short from the alternate training site, and he made his big league debut, drawing two walks.

“I tried to make the game as normal as possible,” Short said. “Just a little bit colder than normal.”

Short also made a nice play at third base on Moran’s grounder in the fourth, although that wasn’t enough to prevent Pittsburgh’s big inning.