Joaquin Benoit Escapes Jam As Rain Starts To Fall

Ahead 4-0, the Tigers didn't score in their half of the seventh. But then, the Tigers didn't need to score in their half of the seventh. They just needed to keep the Yankees from scoring four runs before recording nine outs.

They're a third of the way there.

Max Scherzer resumed his start in the bottom of the seventh and immediately got into trouble. Nick Swisher walked on six pitches, and Jorge Posada followed with a sharply-hit grounder up the middle.

That brought Jim Leyland out of the Detroit dugout, and he replaced Scherzer with eighth-inning man Joaquin Benoit. The eighth-inning man in the seventh inning? It's almost as if Leyland sensed that this was a critical moment.

And Benoit delivered. Russell Martin knocked a can of corn to right-center. Eric Chavez then whiffed at three straight pitches, and Benoit froze Derek Jeter to escape the jam. Jeter disputed the call, but it was really the perfect pitch:

Jeterpitch_medium

A changeup right on the edge. It doesn't get much better in a 1-and-2 count.

It's important to note that rain started to fall while the Yankees were batting. Hard rain. Possibly distracting rain. Who knows if the rain bothered Chavez and Jeter while they were trying to hit? But the game went on, Chavez and Jeter struck out, and the rain has now all but passed. Ahead four in the eighth, the Tigers are sitting pretty. They've led 77 games this season after seven innings, and won all 77.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Spinner

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.