Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
The Detroit Tigers return home after a disappointing 2-3 Southern California trip, and a game postponed due to snow and cold, to face the rival Cleveland Indians for the first time on Wednesday. It also marks the first time they will play a night game at Comerica Park this season, and it figures to be awfully cold.
The Tigers will look to establish a hot streak at home again. They’ve gone 2-4 since starting the season 4-0.
Detroit Tigers (6-4) vs. Cleveland Indians (6-7)
Comerica Park – Detroit, MI
Radio: 97.1 The Ticket
Weather: 43 degrees
When We Last Met
- The Detroit Tigers tormented the Cleveland Indians a year ago, to the tune of a 15-4 season series advantage.
- The last time the teams met on September 1, a Mike Aviles ninth inning grand slam gave Cleveland the 4-0 win, snapping a seven-game Tigers winning streak over the Tribe.
- The only series the Indians won over the Tigers in ‘13 was the first series between the rivals, held in Comerica Park in early May. A Jose Valverde blown save in the rubber match cost the Tigers that series.
- Detroit actually played better in Progressive Field (9-1) than at home (6-3).
- The Tigers hold a slight advantage in the all-time series that dates back to 1901 (1086-1042-12).
Anibal Sanchez (0-0, 3.00) will take the mound for Detroit after an uneven start. While he has a decent earned run average, Sanchez has gotten off to poor starts, allowing two runs in the first inning in his first start of the season against Baltimore and three runs in the first two innings last Wednesday at Dodger Stadium.
Each time he righted the ship, but wasn’t able to go deep into either game. A rain delay cost him the ability to continue against the Orioles and a high pitch count limited him to just five innings against L.A. He would have earned his first win if Joe Nathan hadn’t blown a three-run lead in his most recent start. The Tigers came back and won that game, 7-6 in the 10th.
Anibal was dominant against Cleveland last year, posting a 2.79 ERA and going 2-0 in three starts. Ageless wonder Jason Giambi has hit Sanchez well–.308 while Jason Kipnis has just three hits in 17 at-bats.
Zach McAllister (1-0, 2.31) was sharp his last time out for Cleveland, allowing no runs and five hits in nearly eight innings of work in a 2-0 shutout of San Diego last Wednesday. He lasted just four innings in his first start, against Oakland, allowing three runs and six hits.
The Tigers enjoyed their meetings with McAllister last season, knocking him around for a 9.00 ERA in 12 innings spanning three starts that yielded two losses and a no-decision. Miguel Cabrera and Austin Jackson have hit him well (.308 and .500 respectively). Alex Avila has just one hit in eight at-bats.
All is right in the world as the DH returns to the Tiger lineup and Davis sinks back to the ninth spot.