Alburquerque struggled in his 0.1 IP of work.
After a shaky start from Doug Fister, who battled command and location issues early on, the Tigers were able to chip away at a 6-1 deficit after the Indians’ starter, Corey Kluber, left the game. In the eighth inning, Torii Hunter hit a three-run homer off the usually reliable Vinnie Pestano to tie the game at six. The Tigers got the go ahead run to second base but the rally fell short and the two teams headed to the bottom of the eighth tied up 6-6.
More after the jump
Al Alburquerque came in to start the frame and walked the leadoff hitter, Nick Swisher. After the walk to Swisher, Michael Brantley, who’d led off the sixth with a homer off Fister to pad the Indians’ lead to 6-1, came to the plate. Brantley slugged a two-run homer off Alburquerque on a 3-1 count to give the Indians an 8-6 lead they wouldn’t relinquish. Luke Putkonen came in to mop up after Alburquerque and gave up an inherited runner to push the Indians’ lead to 9-6.
The Tigers got baserunners on in the ninth against Chris Perez, but the rally fizzled out quickly and the Indians finally snapped their seven game losing streak against the Tigers.
According to Matthew Mowery, Alburquerque had allowed only 5 earned runs in 21 IP before today. He gave up 3 runs in his 0.1 IP, and his ERA went from 2.14 to 3.38.
Alburquerque’s career ERA actually went up by a third of a run from 1.74 to 2.08.
The Indians finally snapped their seven game losing streak against the Tigers and the Tigers’ four game winning streak at Progressive Field. The Tigers still lead the season series 8-3 though.
The Tigers’ record on their 11 game roadtrip which ends tomorrow now stands at 6-4.
The homer to Brantley was the first extra base hit Alburquerque’s allowed to a left hander and the first homer he’s allowed to a batter of either handedness in his career (excepting the post-season, of course). He gave up a slam to lefty Robinson Cano in the 2011 ALDS and a solo homer to Pablo Sandoval in the 2012 World Series.
Fister’s now allowed 14 earned runs in the first inning so far this season. He only allowed 10 earned runs in the first inning all of last year, via Bobby Nightengale.
Hunter is batting .522 with 2 homers and 11 RBI in his last 5 games.
Via STATS_MLB, Cabrera now has seven 4-hit games. Adrian Beltre is second with four 4-hit games. No one else has more than three.
The Tigers sent 16 men to the plate in the seventh and eighth innings. 11 of them reached base.
Brantley raised his .274 batting average to .280 with his 3-for-4 day. He also hit two homers.
Cabrera raised his batting average from .360 to .368 with his 4-for-4 day.
Prince Fielder went 1-for-4 and left 3 men on base, but he did have a stolen base today!
The Tigers can still take the series tomorrow behind Max Scherzer, who looks to go 14-0. The Indians will counter with Scott Kazmir, who is 4-4 with a 4.86 ERA.