It should have been a lock. An absolutely done deal.
The Dodgers scored five runs in the first inning. Then they handed it over to Hyun-Jin Ryu, who was pitching on five days' rest. Ryu was 10-1 with a 1.95 earned-run average starting with the extra day of rest.
FOR THE RECORD
An earlier version of this post said that Hyun-Jin Ryu gave up eight earned runs in Tuesday's game. He was charged with seven earned runs.
And the Dodgers and Ryu got destroyed. Completely upended in perhaps their worst loss of the season.
The Detroit Tigers responded to that early Dodgers outburst with 14 unanswered runs, scoring in five of six innings for a 14-5 victory Tuesday at Comerica Park behind a 20-hit attack.
Ryu suffered the worst outing of his career, surrendering five runs and eight hits in the second inning alone. Nothing much was working for Ryu, or at least not well. The Tigers kept it rolling in the third, scoring twice more to chase him. The only out he managed in the third came on a sacrifice fly.
In his 2 1/3 innings, Ryu (9-5) was charged with a career-high seven earned runs and 10 hits with two walks. His ERA jumped from 3.08 to 3.65.
To make it worse – and, yeah, it could be -- the next three Dodgers pitchers gave up another seven runs.
Things were so bad, Manager Don Mattingly got himself ejected for arguing balls and strikes in the sixth.
The Dodgers have given up more runs in a game this season – they lost 18-7 to the Arizona Diamondbacks on May 17 when Clayton Kershaw had a bad game. But they didn't take a 5-0 lead in that one. And their five-run spurt in the first inning Tuesday came against former Cy Young winner Justin Verlander, no less.
Adrian Gonzalez doubled in two runs, Matt Kemp singled in another and Juan Uribe connected on a two-run homer. It was 5-0 Dodgers, a lead as deceiving as a new romance.
But the Dodgers failed to get another run against Verlander, letting him off the hook as the Tigers – the American League's top hitting (.275) and slugging (.441) team – went to work.
At no time was it pretty. After Ryu left trailing 7-5,the bullpen could not keep it close. Jamey Wright gave up four runs in just two-thirds of an inning, and it was an unexpected runaway.