DETROIT -- The floodgates finally released. The Detroit Tigers clobbered the Minnesota Twins, knocking them around for 20 hits while Anibal Sanchez pitched a gem. The Tigers won in blowout fashion, taking a 13-1 win over the Twins, and the series along with it.
Sanchez was brilliant. He gave up just five hits and one run over eight innings, allowing just one walk. He retired 10 consecutive batters following the only run he gave up. After a dominant outing where his nine strikeouts matched a season high, Al Alburquerque came in and delivered a 1-2-3 ninth inning, including a strikeout.
The Tigers' offense returned. This is not a drill. Detroit scored four runs in the first and third innings, threatening to score in the second. After what seemed like a never-ending drought of timely hitting, the floodgates opened and the Tigers not only got some luck with balls dropping in for hits, they cleared the ballpark.
Nick Castellanos homered. Miguel Cabrera homered ... twice, in back-to-back innings. Bryan Holaday hit a home run. But that wasn't all. Detroit added three doubles and a pair of back-to-back triples to their extra-base accounting, and went 7-for-15 with runners in scoring position.
Anibal Sanchez: Sanchez struck out nine batters in eight innings while allowing just one run on five hits and a walk. It was his deepest start of the season so far and he tried his season-high strikeout mark, set previously during his second start of the season, April 13.
First inning DP: (Insert jaw-dropping descriptor here) Excuse me, I'll be glued to the TV with that double play on a loop. Oh, right. So, Brian Dozier lined a single to left to leadoff the game. Kurt Suzuki, starting his 1,000th career-game, smacked a chopper up the middle. Along comes Jose Iglesias, who swipes the ball and uses his glove to flip it to Ian Kinsler, who in turn fires to Miguel Cabrera for a fantastic double play ... barehanded. If that's not the No. 1 play on SportsCenter's Top 10, I don't know what is, and you should probably have your head examined.
Nick Castellanos: Blasted an opposite field 2-1 pitch for a home run in the fifth inning, giving the Tigers a 5-1 lead.
Miguel Cabrera: Destroyed a baseball to left field following Kinsler's leadoff double in the sixth -- Kinsler just missed hitting a home run for himself -- for a two-run home run. And for good measure Cabrera smoked another two-run homer in the seventh inning. He also drove in the first run of the game in the first inning, an RBI single to center field, but that's not as impressive so it's more of a footnote.
Bryan Holaday: Two-run blast. Sure, why not? It was one of those days.
Designated for assignment ... because we're all tired of this part of the recap.
STREAKS AND STATS:
- J.D. Martinez got hits in the first and second inning, giving him multi-hit games on back-to-back days, the first he's done so this season. He has hits in four straight at-bats, and is 7-for-14 with only one strikeout since drawing the walk against Royals' Wade Davis.
- Nick Castellanos' home run in the fifth marked his first home run in 66 plate appearances when he homered on April 24 against the Indians. It is the first home run by a player not named Martinez since Alex Avila's home run on May 6 against the White Sox.
- The Tigers have hit 10 opposite field home runs this season, eight of which have been hit via a right-handed batter. As a team, they have 29 for the season.
- The Tigers hit back-to-back triples in the seventh innings.
- Anthony Gose's four-hit day marked the first of his MLB career. He is 7-for-13 in his last seven games.
- Bryan Holaday's two-run home run in the eighth inning marked the second homer of his MLB career, his last (and first) occurring on August 22, 2013, also against the Twins.
- Miguel Cabrera hit home runs in back-to-back innings, giving him eight hom runs for the season. The two homers marks Cabrera's third multi-homer game of the season and the 33rd of his career. His last came on April 29 at Minnesota.
- Miguel Cabrera's two home runs gave him 398 for his career, tying him with Dale Murphy for 55th in MLB history. He now sits one behind Al Kaline and Andres Galarraga for 399 home runs, which would be a three-way tie for 54th on the all-time home run list.
- The 13 runs and 20 hits in Thursday's game are a season high for the Tigers.
WIN PROBABILITY GRAPH: