Trevor Bauer endured his roughest outing of the season Friday.
The Cleveland Indians right-hander will try to bounce back in the finale of a three-game series Wednesday afternoon at Detroit's Comerica Park.
Bauer gave up season highs in runs (five) and hits (11) while lasting a season-low 4 2/3 innings against Kansas City in a 10-9 loss. He pitched at least six innings in his previous six starts.
"It just seemed like it didn't matter where I threw it or what I threw, how hard I threw it, how soft I threw it," Bauer told MLB.com afterward. "I felt like I had to strike everybody out to get an out. If they put a ball in play, I feel like it was -- whether it was to someone or not to someone or hard hit or soft hit or whatever -- it felt like they ended up on base. It's tough on nights like that."
Bauer (2-3, 3.00 ERA) was tough on the Tigers on April 12, when he limited them to two runs in seven innings while recording seven strikeouts. He'll try to salvage the finale of a three-game series.
Detroit (19-22) rallied from a pair of four-run deficits Tuesday to capture a 9-8 victory, pulling it within one game of Cleveland (20-21) in the American League Central Division standings.
Bauer typically struggles against the Tigers. He's 5-5 with a 7.26 ERA and a 1.83 WHIP in 13 career appearances against them.
Many of the Tigers who tormented him in the past are on the disabled list or no longer on the team. Detroit has three starting position players sidelined by injuries but it has won four of its last five after John Hicks capped a five-run seventh with a bases-loaded walk against Andrew Miller.
"It's a bunch of gamers," Tigers manager Ron Gardenhire said. "If you could be in the dugout and listen to it, you'd understand exactly what we're talking about. Lot of jokes, lot of talking trash to each other, lot of calling each other names. It's really entertaining in the dugout to listen to them kind of go at each other and push each other. Most teams do that but this team's a little louder."
Left-hander Ryan Carpenter will make his second major league start for the Tigers after being recalled from Triple-A Toledo on Tuesday. He pitched three innings in his first start April 1, allowing three runs on five hits to Pittsburgh.
Carpenter (0-0, 7.36 ERA) has started seven games this season for the Mud Hens, going 1-3 with a 5.01 ERA. Carpenter, 27, was signed as a free agent in November after starting 25 of 27 games last season for Albuquerque in the Pacific Coast League, posting a 10-9 record and 4.15 ERA.
The Tigers likely won't have closer Shane Greene available. He has pitched four consecutive days.
They did get back right fielder Nicholas Castellanos on Tuesday after he missed two games with a finger injury. Castellanos hit a solo homer in his return.
"This is a group that's pretty locked in right now," Gardenhire said. "They're fighting. Guys are getting their opportunity with some of the big boys hurt and they're grinding it out pretty good. We aren't feeling sorry for ourselves at all.
Everybody has these things. You still have to go play and these guys have been doing a great job of it."