DETROIT -- Justin Verlander was outstanding for the Detroit Tigers for the sixth straight start. The offense was another story. The Tigers had their chances but in the end lost 2-0 to the Texas Rangers, snapping a three-game winning streak on Friday night.
Verlander (1-6) was on his game once again. He allowed just a handful of hits and walked only one batter. He had some early trouble getting hitters out despite getting ahead in the count, but settled in as the game progressed. After seven strong frames, Verlander's day was done thanks to an assist from teammate and birthday boy J.D. Martinez.
It should be noted that as strong as he was, Verlander hurt his own efforts on an errant throw to first base in the third that allowed a leadoff single to reach third. Former Tiger Prince Fielder score the Rangers' second run on a sacrifice fly that wouldn't have scored were it not for Verlander's error.
For his efforts, Verlander struck out eight batters but suffered the fate of a silent Tigers offense once again. Facing just a two-run deficit, they scattered six hits across seven innings. Despite having multiple chances to score -- including a three-hit, three-doubles day from Miguel Cabrera -- Detroit couldn't push a run across.
The bullpen was able to keep the Rangers off the board, though it took several relievers to get it done. Neftali Feliz broke two bats in the ninth inning that resulted in two groundouts, one that flew into the stands behind the Tigers' dugout. No fans were injured this time around, though that wasn't the case in the bottom of the previous frame.
In the eighth inning a fan was struck by a foul ball behind the home dugout and stopped play for approximately nine minutes. Gose was 0-2 to start the frame. Paramedics attended to, and eventually got the fan onto a stretcher and into a neck brace before play resumed and the Tigers went quietly into the night in that frame.
Justin Verlander: He gave the Tigers seven solid two-run frames, striking out eight batters and allowing just one earned run.
Miguel Cabrera's bat: He had three more doubles on Friday night, finishing 3-for-4 for the night.
Tigers offense: Detroit had just seven hits through nine innings. They stranded six runners and were 2-for-9 with runners in scoring position. Cabrera had the only extra-base hits of the game and never scored.
Cabrera's baserunning: On more than one occasion Cabrera had a lapse in judgment on the bases. While he had three doubles in the game, he was picked off on the first two occasions, ending both the fourth and seventh frames.
STREAKS AND STATS:
- The Rangers challenged the safe call at home plate on a slide from Miguel Cabrera. After a review of 1:51 the call was overturned and Cabrera was called out at the plate as the tag was applied just before his foot touched home plate. Nick Castellanos was credited with a single.
- Anthony Gose has struck out eight times in his last 16 plate appearances. In August he's batting .219/.296/.344 with just one double and two triples entering Friday night's game.
- In Justin Verlander's last five starts entering Friday night's game, the Tigers offense has driven in just 10 runs. Two of the five were winnable yet were lost because of a lack of run support. He's been given the win in just one of those starts.
- Verlander has a 1.67 ERA in his last six starts.
- In the bottom of the sixth inning the Tigers challenged an inning-ending double play, wherein the second base umpire said that Rangers second baseman Rougned Odor doubled off Miguel Cabrera by applying the tag the first time he optouched the bag. After a lengthy review of 4:57 the call stood and Cabrera was doubled off at second base.
- Miguel Cabrera raised his batting average to .363 on the season and continues to inch closer to qualifying for the batting title again. Since returning from the DL, Cabrera is batting .500/.618/.846 with a home run and six doubles.
- J.D. Martinez earned his 14th assist of the season on a 9-5 inning-ending double play in the seventh. He now has the most assist by any outfielder in the majors.
WIN PROBABILITY GRAPH: