Toronto (2-6) at Detroit (6-2)

Mostly Cloudy Currently: Detroit, MI
Temp: 61° F
  • Game info: 1:05 pm EDT Thu Apr 15, 2004
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Reigning AL Cy Young winner Roy Halladay looks to earn his first victory of the season when the Toronto Blue Jays conclude their three-game series against the Detroit Tigers.

Halladay went 22-7 with a 3.25 ERA last season and was named the league’s best pitcher. However, he has gotten off to a shaky start this season, losing his first two games.

Halladay allowed three runs and seven hits, including two homers, in seven innings of Saturday’s 4-1 loss to Pedro Martinez and the Boston Red Sox.

“When (Martinez is) out there and throwing the ball the way he did today, there isn’t a whole lot of room for error,” Halladay said. “If you make a mistake, it’s tough to come back from. I think that was kind of the case today.”

Halladay usually takes some time to find his form. The right-hander is 5-8 with a 6.02 ERA in 24 April appearances—easily his worst ERA in any month. Halladay, who went 0-1 with a 4.91 ERA in five April starts last season, has not won in his last 12 starts during the month.

However, Detroit manager Alan Trammell said that he isn’t exactly excited about the matchup.

“I’m not looking forward to that,” Trammell said. “He’s going to get going. It’s just a matter of time.”

The Tigers beat the Blue Jays 5-3 on Wednesday for their fourth win over Toronto in five games this season.

At 6-2, Detroit is off to the best eight-game start of any team coming off a 110-loss season since 1900, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. The Tigers started last season 0-9 en route to an AL-record 119 losses.

“It’s great because we’ve got respect and a lot of people have to shut up now,” left fielder Rondell White said. “We’ve got everything we need to win. There’s no easy outs in our lineup, our pitching has been great and our defense has been unbelievable.

“We’ve still got a long way to go this season, but we really feel like we can win the Central.”

Carlos Pena hit a two-run double in a four-run first inning for Detroit, which is off to its best start since 1985.

“This is fun,” first baseman Craig Monroe said. “We believe we have a chance to win every day. When I wake up, I can’t wait to get out to the yard.”

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Starting Pitchers

R. Halladay Tor vs. J. Johnson NYY
8-8 Record 8-15
4.20 ERA 5.13
95 K 125
39 BB 60
1.35 WHIP 1.43