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Detroit Tigers: Offense steam rolls Indians, 8-4

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It was more interesting than it needed to be, but Detroit Tigers fans will take the result.

Behind 10 hits from the top four hitters in the lineup, Detroit’s offense spotted the bullpen, who needed two pitchers in the ninth, enough runs Friday to spoil the Cleveland Indians home opener and beat the Tribe, 8-4.

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The top of the lineup wasn’t the only productive part of the Tigers offense as seven of the nine starters had multiple hits. Miguel Cabrera, Victor Martinez, Yoenis Cespedes and Jose Iglesias each had three hits.

Detroit’s 18 hits, 13 of which came off Indians starter Zach McAllister, helped give Tigers pitcher Alfredo Simon a, 5-0, lead. Cabrera and Martinez each had two-out RBI singles in the fourth, and Nick Castellanos hit a two-run homer in the fifth.

Cleveland chased Simon in the sixth, scoring three runs in the frame, but the Detroit offense scored three more runs in the seventh.

The insurance runs may have relaxed Tigers fans for the moment, but Joba Chamberlain made things interesting in the ninth. He faced four batters, striking out two and allowing two hits before manager Brad Ausmus replaced him with new closer Joakim Soria.

Soria faced one batter, Michael Bourn, striking him out for the final out. It appeared Soria received a generous strike call on the fourth pitch of the at-bat, which made the count 2-2, rather than 3-1, but the Tigers will take it.

Soria earned his first save of the season, but even though Chamberlain wasn’t charged with a run, Detroit fans can’t be pleased he wasn’t able to finish this game himself.

Still, it’s hard not to love the Tigers offense right now. They have outscored the opposition, 30-5, in the first four games of the season. Iglesias and Anthony Gose have been particularly hot to start the year, hitting .600 and .471, respectively.

As for the mound, it wasn’t all negative as Simon pitched five great innings, allowing just two hits and no runs. After recording a fly out to begin the sixth, though, Simon tossed up five straight hits which led to three runs.

Luckily, reliever Al Alburquerque stopped the bleeding as he induced a double play to end the Indians threat, and the Tigers offense went back to work.

With the victory, the Tigers are now, 4-0, just as they were last season.

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