LAKELAND, Fla. (AP) — Julio Teheran’s spring debut was hardly a breeze.
Hoping to earn a spot in Atlanta’s rotation, Teheran was tagged for six home runs in just two innings and the Detroit Tigers connected nine times overall Sunday in romping past the Braves 18-3.
With a strong wind blowing out to right field, the Tigers teed off against Teheran and the Braves. Prince Fielder homered and Ryan Raburn hit two shots, including a grand slam.
“It was a tough day for anyone to pitch,” Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. “With the conditions we had today, I am not about to count anyone out. When the wind is blowing the way it was today, all you are asking for is trouble.”
Tigers manager Jim Leyland said he could understand what Teheran was going through, too.
“This was just one of those silly games,” he said. “Everything hit into the wind toward right field helped. It was just a freak thing. We just kept hitting everything to right field so that doesn’t say anything about (Teheran). I don’t like winning games like that.”
The post-1900 record for homers allowed in a major league regular season game, by the way, is six. That’s happened eight times, most recently by Tampa Bay’s James Shields in 2010 against Toronto, STATS LLC said. Tim Wakefield and R.A. Dickey also are on the list.
Teheran allowed only five homers while going 15-3 at Triple-A Gwinnett last season. He had a rougher time in the majors, giving up four homers in 19 2-3 innings.
With Atlanta ace Tim Hudson out until May with a back injury, there are at least two openings on the Braves’ staff and Teheran is near the top of the list to get one.
Alex Avila’s homer helped the Tigers take a four-run lead in the first against Randall Delgado. Teheran took over in the second and Raburn and Brennan Boesch homered.
In the third, Prince Fielder homered into the wind and Delmon Young followed with another drive Jhonny Peralta and Austin Jackson followed with two more and the Braves led 11-0 after three.
Fielder said he didn’t need any help from the elements.
“None of my homers are ever wind-aided,” he laughed. “They don’t have to be.”
Teheran gave up six hits total, all home runs. Gonzalez said pitching coach Roger McDowell will have a talk with Teheran, and that the 21-year-old righty will throw on the side before his next appearance.
“I just want to see how he will handle things his next time out,” Gonzalez said. “His confidence is the last thing I am thinking about right now. He’ll be fine.”
Max Scherzer made his spring debut for the Tigers and allowed three hits in two scoreless innings. Closer Jose Valverde pitched a shutout inning.
NOTES: Tigers star Victor Martinez was in camp for the first time since tearing a knee ligament while doing agility drills in January. He said he was “crushed” by having to miss the season. ACL surgery is scheduled for April 4. … The Tigers signed utility player Marcus Lemon to a minor league contract. Lemon, 23, is the son of Chet Lemon, who spent nine years with the Tigers as an outfielder. … Cy Young winner and AL Most Valuable Player Justin Verlander will make his spring debut on Monday against the Toronto Blue Jays. … Braves pitcher Tommy Hanson, who had a one-car accident on his way to camp and sustained a mild concussion, has resumed his throwing program. … Atlanta 1B Freddie Freeman is day-to-day with his injured right kneecap. … Jair Jurrjens will start for the Braves on Monday against Houston.
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