DETROIT--The Detroit Tigers finally played the Cleveland Indians after having their first attempt thwarted by a cranky Mother Nature intent on ruining the plans of baseball attendees everywhere. Things did not get off to a good start for the Tigers however.
Anibal Sanchez had command issues in the first two innings and walked the first three batters in the first inning before forcing Carlos Santana to ground into a double play which put the Indians ahead 1-0. Sanchez did not fare better in the second when Yan Gomes then scorched a triple to right center field which plated two more and put the Indians ahead 3-1.
Despite a rough first two innings Sanchez settled in and struck out eight of the next 10 batters he faced. But with his pitch count sitting at 104 his night ended at five innings. Sanchez allowed two hits, and three runs, two of which were earned. He walked four and struck out eight in all.
Evan Reed allowed a leadoff double but got the next two batters to ground out and Ian Krol had no issues as he retired the next batter with ease. Al Alburquerque retired two in a row before allowing a single but a lineout to Torii Hunter would end the eighth inning. Joba Chamberlain pitched a decent ninth inning, he allowed a leadoff single but struck out the next batter and the next batter grounded out into a double play to end the inning.
Ian Kinsler scorched a leadoff double which barely squeaked by the third base line in the bottom of the first inning. A groundout by Torii Hunter advanced Kinsler to third and Miguel Cabrera grounded out to bring Kinsler home and tie the game at 1-1. The Tigers would reach base for the next seven innings except the third but they would not be able to bring a single runner home.
Rajai Davis reached on a fielding error by Jason Kipnis and Ian Kinsler laid down a beauty of a bunt in the eighth. The Indians challenged the call but Kinsler was ruled safe. Torii Hunter failed to execute when called on to bunt before grounding into a double play. Davis got to third on that and eventually scored when Miguel Cabrera got his first hit of the night, bringing the score to 3-2. But a swinging strikeout by Austin Jackson ended the inning.
The ninth inning dramatics never cease. Alex Avila hit a ruled double and advanced to third on an error by center fielder Michael Bourn. But a swinging strikout by Don Kelly who pinch hit for Alex Gonzalez and a groundout by Rajai Davis ended it all.