Aníbal Sánchez paced the Tigers with 6.2 innings of 3 hit, 7 strikeout ball, and the Tigers offense did enough—even though they actually had a run taken off the board!—as the team kept pace in the AL Central division race.
Sánchez, in what may have been his best start as a Tiger, lost his bid for a no hitter on a deep Carlos Santana fly ball to right center that ended up going for a triple. He later allowed a couple runs in the seventh, before being lifted for lefty Phil Coke. Coke struck out Matt LaPorta, the pinch hitter, to preserve the lead.
More after the jump
Joaquín Benoit came into the game in the eighth and got himself into a bit of trouble. Benoit gave up a run on two hits before getting out of the inning, and preventing further damage. The Indians did not threaten again, as José Valverde nailed down the victory with a perfect 1-2-3 ninth inning.
As the Chicago White Sox won earlier in the day, the Tigers don’t lose any ground in the race for the AL Central. The two teams remain one game apart heading into Sunday’s action. The Tigers will pit Rick Porcello against Ubaldo Jimenez, while Chicago will send out Jake Peavy to face the Minnesota Twins and Scott Diamond. Both Detroit and Chicago will be going for three-game sweeps prior to their rain delay makeup on Monday.
I apologize for changing the title, and especially to that, but I’m very immature and I will use almost any excuse to show it.