Verlander Deals, Offense Folds, Detroit Tigers Lose, 4-0
By Tom Pollin
Justin Verlander faltered once Sunday afternoon, allowing three runs in the sixth, two more than the Indians needed as they shut out the Detroit Tigers 4-0. Rookie Cody Anderson (3-3), Cleveland’s half of Sunday afternoon’s pitchers duel, surrendered only two hits through his seven innings of work. Bryan Shaw and Cody Allen finished off the Tigers easily to drop them to a season worst 12 games below .500 for the season.
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The Tigers were able to threaten twice against Anderson but fell victim to their season-long devil the double-play both times. In the fourth, Anthony Gose led off with a four pitch walk. He moved to second when Dixon Machado bunted for a hit but Miguel Cabrera followed by grounding into a 6-4-3 double-play and J.D. Martinez lined out to end the inning.
In the fifth, Victor Martinez led off with a double and Nick Castellanos followed with a walk to set the Tigers up again with runners on first and second with nobody out. This threat died when Tyler Collins struck out on a 3-2 pitch and James McCann followed by grounding into a 4-6-3 double-play.
Abraham Almonte picked up the first hit of the game for the Indians off of Verlander (3-7) with two outs in the fifth by launching a ball that fell just past the reach of Gose in center field for a triple. Verlander escaped that easily but a wild sixth was his downfall.
Michael Martinez led off with a single to center. Jason Kipnis followed with a ground ball that was scooped up by second baseman Andrew Romine. His flip to Machado was late to get Martinez at second. Kipnis was originally called out on the throw to first but the call was challenged by Cleveland manager Terry Francona and overturned. Francisco Lindor followed with a triple to deep right-center to score both. Carlos Santana singled to bring home Lindor and the Indians had done all the damage needed to put the game out of reach.
Cleveland added a fourth run in the ninth off of Neftali Perez and the Tigers went down easily in their half for another disappointing finish.
On Monday afternoon the Tigers welcome Tampa Bay to Comerica Park with ex-Tiger Drew Smyly (2-2) pitching for the Rays against lefty Randy Wolf (0-3).