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Westbrook Tames Tigers With Help From Bullpen And Long-Ball

Cleveland, OH (Sports Network) – Andy Marte and Austin Kearns each hit a two- run homer, leading the Cleveland Indians in an 8-2 rout of the Detroit Tigers to begin a four-game series at Progressive Field.

Travis Hafner and Trevor Crowe both added two hits and an RBI for the Indians, who had lost five of six to end the first half of the season. Carlos Santana also drove in a run and stole a base in the lopsided win.

Jake Westbrook (6-5) pitched 5 2/3 effective innings, allowing two runs on five hits and a walk while fanning five.

Miguel Cabrera and Brennan Boesch each drove in a run for the Tigers, who have lost two straight following a five-game win streak. Austin Jackson registered a triple among two hits in defeat.

Max Scherzer (6-7), who was 4-0 in his last five starts and allowed just three runs in his previous 27 2/3 innings, yielded four runs, five hits and a season-high five walks in five frames. He struck out seven.

With the game tied at two entering the bottom of the fourth, Crowe doubled off the wall in left-center to begin the inning. Scherzer then served up a 3-2 fastball right down the middle, which was crushed by Marte into the left-field seats for a 4-2 Cleveland advantage.

After the Tigers stranded a runner on third with nobody out in the sixth, the Indians tacked on four more runs to extend their lead.

Michael Brantley singled with one away off Robbie Weinhardt, and Jayson Nix reached on an infield single when Brandon Inge’s throw to first was low. Brantley raced to third on the play and scored on Santana’s sacrifice fly.

Hafner kept the inning alive with an RBI single, setting up Kearns’ two-run blast off Brad Thomas that just cleared the wall in right for an 8-2 cushion.

Detroit didn’t threaten down the stretch.

Jackson led off the game by reaching on an infield single and stole second with one out. Cabrera followed by putting the Tigers on the board with a two- out single off the wall in left.

The Indians answered with two runs in the second. Scherzer struggled with his control early, walking Matt LaPorta to start the frame. Crowe followed with an RBI triple, which was a line drive down the left field line that eluded Boesch after an odd carom off the wall. Following a walk to Marte, Jason Donald’s ground ball scored Crowe for a 2-1 lead.

Detroit tied the game in the fourth, as Magglio Ordonez doubled, moved to third on a Cabrera fly ball and scored on Boesch’s sharp ground ball to shortstop.

The Indians have recorded an extra-base hit in 38 straight games, the longest active streak in the AL…Cleveland third baseman Jhonny Peralta (illness) did not play…Scherzer had an opportunity to record four strikeouts in the fifth inning, but Marte popped up…Cabrera extended his hit streak to a career-high 20…These two clubs will play a doubleheader on Saturday to make up a postponed game from May 7.

Photographs by spatulated, Triple Tri, and chrischappelear used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.