DETROIT -- Rangers pitcher C.J. Wilson was asked how he felt about the way he pitched on Tuesday."Just garbage, to be frank," Wilson said after a 5-4 loss to the Tigers on a cool Tuesday afternoon at Comerica Park. Rangers outfielder David Murphy summed up the afternoon this way after a walk-off single by Tigers first Miguel Cabrera in the ninth inning: "We had our opportunities, but we didn't play our best baseball. That's the bottom line. I don't know how else to put it." There probably isn't any other way of putting it after multiple baserunning mistakes, key defensive slips and a couple of ninth-inning walks by reliever Darren O'Day ended up costing the Rangers in only their second loss in 11 games. "We just had a lot of opportunities," Wilson said. "I had opportunities I didn't take advantage of, the hitters had opportunities, the defense had opportunities, the baserunners had opportunities. It all just went the other way." Wilson had one of the defensive mistakes. He stumbled and fell trying to field Ramon Santiago's roller between the mound and home plate to lead off the sixth. That started a two-run rally for the Tigers and gave them a 4-3 lead. "I definitely gave up two more runs than I should have," Wilson said. "I played the ball like Usain Bolt was running. It was Ramon Santiago. I've got to take my time and not rush." That was one play that irked manager Ron Washington. He also wasn't happy with the two walks in the ninth inning that set up Cabrera's game-winning hit. That stood out more than having three runners thrown out on the basepaths. Josh Hamilton was thrown out at home trying to score on a foul popup when pitcher Brad Penny forgot to cover the plate in the first, Adrian Beltre was nailed at third trying to stretch a leadoff double into a triple in the fourth, and Julio Borbon was picked off first base in the seventh. "We recovered from all of that," Washington said. "What hurt us was not fielding that ball and walking two guys so we could face the best hitter in the game." A terrific catch by Tigers left fielder Ryan Raburn in the third inning also made a big difference. Michael Young came to bat with runners at the corners and one out in a 1-1 game, and he hit a deep fly to left. Raburn got back to the fence, jumped up and snatched away a three-run home run. "I think the wind held it up more than anything," Raburn said. "It gave me time to get underneath it. I don't think it was anything special. I just went up and I was able to come down with it. I felt [the ball] when I jumped up. I was just hoping it would stay in there." Young still drove in a run with what ended up as a sacrifice fly. But Ian Kinsler, pinch-hitting for Hamilton -- who was hurt sliding into home and will miss six to eight weeks -- flied out to end the inning, and the Rangers walked away with a 2-1 lead instead of 4-1. "It was a good play," Young said. "I did my job and had a good swing. I'm used to that. It's the sixth time in my career it's happened -- somebody takes a home run away -- and I can name every guy that's done it." The Rangers ended up 1-for-7 with runners in scoring position on the afternoon. The only hit was a single by Nelson Cruz that drove home the tying run in the eighth. That made it 4-4, but the bullpen couldn't keep it that way. Pedro Strop pitched a scoreless eighth before O'Day took over in the ninth and gave up a leadoff single to Brandon Inge. Alex Avila bunted him to second, but then O'Day ran into control problems. He walked Austin Jackson, struck out Santiago and walked Raburn to load the bases. "I wasn't throwing my fastball for strikes," O'Day said. "By not throwing strikes, I was not getting the borderline pitches. I wasn't getting close calls, and I started falling behind guys." Cabrera worked the count to 2-1 before smacking a fastball through the left side of the infield to end the game. "The pitch to Cabrera was one of the best fastballs I threw all day," O'Day said. "He just hit it hard and got it through." Wilson went 6 2/3 innings and allowed four runs. He is still dealing with a sore left hamstring that cut short his final Spring Training outing after two innings. "It's getting better; I don't feel it," Wilson said. "But I'm still looking for power, and it's not there."
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.