Team Panama finds offense vs. Tigers

Six-run fifth inning blows top off tight game in Lakeland

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at Lakeland, Fla.
Wednesday, March 4

Panama at the plate: What had been a scoreless duel broke up with a six-run Panama fifth inning, powered by doubles from Javier Castillo, Angel Chavez and Audes De Leon. Concepcion Rodriguez added two runs and a triple in the seventh.

Tigers at the plate: Timo Perez's double set in motion a three-run fifth to answer Panama's rally, including an RBI single from Don Kelly and a run-scoring triple from Wilkin Ramirez. Ramirez had two hits on the day, while Brent Clevlen added a double.

Panama on the mound: Former Major League pitcher Ramiro Mendoza and current big leaguer Manny Corpas tossed two scoreless innings apiece before Gilberto Mendez gave up the three-run rally. Paolo Espino entered the game to escape a bases-loaded jam in the seventh and ended up one out shy of the save. Tigers Minor Leaguer Josh Kite, who actually isn't on the team, finished the game.

Tigers on the mound: Rick Porcello's first Spring Training start saw a few jitters and a couple walks, but he rallied with three strikeouts, including a key fanning of Julio Zuleta with runners on second and third and one out. Porcello and lefty Kyle Bloom each tossed two scoreless innings before Chris Lambert surrendered six runs on six hits. Ryan Perry tossed a scoreless seventh with a walk and a strikeout.

Up next: The Tigers get back to the regular portion of their Spring Training schedule on Thursday when fifth starter candidate Zach Miner makes his first spring start against the Nationals in a 1:05 p.m. ET game at Joker Marchant Stadium. Juan Rincon, Scott Williamson, Fernando Rodney and Casey Fien are slated to pitch in relief. The Nationals will counter with Shawn Hill, Gustavo Chacin, Terrell Young, J.D. Martin and Ryan Wagner.

Team Panama will move up Interstate 4 to Kissimmee, where they'll take on the Astros in a 1:05 p.m. ET contest.

Jason Beck is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.