Justin Verlander, armed with a last minute pregame tweak—he apparently discovered a mechanical flaw while Google searching images of himself to see if his grip has changed shortly before the game—held the Diamondbacks to three runs over 6.2 IP, and Miguel Cabrera contributed with a tie-breaking RBI single to dead center, helping the Tigers top the Diamondbacks 4-3.
Verlander, outside of a 30-pitch blip in the fourth inning, in which he allowed two runs and struggled to keep his fastball down in the zone, pitched well. Verlander worked 93-95mph with his fastball, and later mixed in his secondary pitches, particularly after Arizona ambushed him in the fourth.
Vidal Nuño never stood a chance, as the Tigers jumped on him early and often, making solid contact off the left hander. Torii Hunter got the scoring started in the second, when his two-run homer scored Victor Martinez, and a red-hot Austin Jackson padded the lead with a solo shot in the third.
More after the jump.
In the seventh of a tied game, the Diamondbacks chose to pitch to Cabrera, who made them pay with a single on a ball that hit just under the yellow homerun line in dead center to score Jackson. Cabrera was then gunned down at second trying to stretch the single into a double. After a lengthy review, it was determined that it wasn’t a homerun and the out at second was upheld.
Al Alburquerque came into the game in the seventh to relieve Verlander and help protect a 4-3 lead, and was then followed by Joba Chamberlain and Joe Nathan, who closed out the Diamondbacks to earn his twentieth save of the season. Chamberlain also notched his twenty-first hold and, via the Tigers’ PR department, Chamberlain has a 0.68 ERA over his last fifteen outings (13.1IP/1ER).
The Tigers send out Rick Porcello (12-5, 1.7 WAR) tomorrow, while the Diamondbacks counter with rookie Chase Anderson (6-4, 0.1 WAR).