PHOENIX – Detroit Tigers rookie Kody Clemens picked the perfect time for his first MLB home run.
confronted with Arizona Diamondbacks left-handed Joe Mantiply, who had not allowed a home run since June 2021, Clemens – a left-handed batter – flipped a hanging curveball and placed the ball in the right field seats.
Clemens’ three-run homerun resulted in a tie in the sixth inning and pushed the Tigers to a 6-3 victory on Saturday in the second of three games against the Diamondbacks at Chase Field.
To set up Clemens’ big blow, Harold Castro and Robbie Grossman opened the sixth with back-to-back singles. Clemens, who batted .143 in 16 games, hit his first homer in the 35th at bat of his career.
The Tigers (28-43) scored their six runs on nine hits and one walk. Javier Báez extended his hit streak to nine games with a 2-for-4 appearance. Castro had at least three hits for the seventh time this season.
Miguel Cabrera singled off reliever Note Ramirez while lining up in the seventh inning for the 3,053rd hit of his career to finish 27th in the all-time MLB standings with Rod Carew.
Leading 6-3, the Tigers returned to their bullpen to cover the last four innings.
Lefthander Tyler Alexander threw a scoreless fifth inning, but also stopped the Diamondbacks from scoring in the sixth to finish his two-inning outing on a total of 24 pitches.
Before the first out in the sixth, rookie midfielder Riley Greene performed a ridiculous dive into the center right hole. He also completed a sliding catch for the second out in the seventh.
After Alexander bridged the gap, manager AJ Hinch then left the game in the hands of his best relievers.
Righthander Joe Jiménez struckout two batters in his perfect seventh inning. He struckout multiple strikeouts in eight consecutive appearances, the longest streak since Drew VerHagen in August 2019.
In the eighth, right-wing Michael Fulmer worked around a leadoff single. He took advantage of an inning-ending double play. Fulmer, who has a 2.00 ERA in 27 games, has thrown 11⅔ innings in a row without an earned run.
Lefthanded defender Gregory Soto slammed the door in the ninth inning to make his 14th save.
Usually fine from Faedo
Righthander Alex Faedo, who made his 10th MLB-start, gave up three runs on three hits and three walks with four strikeouts in four innings, throwing 42 of 75 pitches for strikes.
Through the first three innings, two batters reached base safely against Faedo: Ketel Marte with a five-pitch walk in the first and Jose Herrera with a single on a 2-0 fastball in the third.
Faedo gave up all three runs with one out in the fourth inning. David Peralta launched a hanging slider to right field for a two-run homerun, and Daulton Varsho hit an RBI double to the right.
For each hit, the Diamondbacks walked.
Faedo bounced back by striking out Geraldo Perdomo with a full-count slider. Despite trailing 2-0 in the count, he fired three consecutive call strikes: fastball, fastball and slider.
The next batter, Herrera, grounded out to end Faedo’s start.
For his 75 pitches, Faedo threw 44 fastballs with four seams (59%), 24 sliders (32%), and seven substitutions (9%). He made seven swings and misses – three with his slider – and called 13 strikes.
His fastball averaged 94.4 mph and peaked at 96 mph.
Accept all gifts
The Tigers scored one run in the fourth inning, two runs in the fifth and three runs in the sixth. For Clemens’ homerun, the runs in the fourth and fifth division were enough to keep the game at three points.
Diamondbacks-starter Zach Davies gave up three runs (two earned) on five hits and one walk with two strikeouts in five innings. The veteran righthander, like Faedo, crawled through the first three innings.
The Tigers reached Davies in the fourth, when Báez scored on Castro’s triple to the right for a 1-0 lead. Two more runs were scored in the fifth, thanks to a defensive error by Diamondbacks second baseman Buddy Kennedy.
There were two runners in scoring position for Greene, who grounded out to second base. Kennedy messed up the game and was charged with a fielding error that enabled Tucker Barnhart (walk) and Victor Reyes (double) to score easily.
Those runs tied the game, 3-3.
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This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Kody Clemens launches Detroit Tigers to 6-3 win over Diamondbacks