In the opener of the biggest series of the season thus far, the Indians forgot to bring their offense to Comerica Park tonight.
Max Scherzer won his 13th game and Jose Valverde saved his 36th game of the season as the Detroit Tigers rode three home runs to a 4-1 victory over the Tribe, increasing the Tigers’ lead to 2.5 games in the AL Central.
Austin Jackson blasted a two-run homer in the sixth off of Josh Tomlin, and Alex Avila and Jhonny Peralta went deep in the seventh after Cleveland had crept within 2-1 in the top half of the inning, and Joaquin Benoit and Valverde each tossed a scoreless frame to wrap it up and give Detroit just their fourth win in ten games vs. the Tribe in 2011.
The Indians were not helped at all by going 0-for-5 with men in scoring position, and were held to five hits — only one for extra bases. Cleveland’s only run scored on a wild pitch, as the bats themselves were shut out.
Tomlin falls to 12-6 with the loss. Josh pitched 6.2 innings and allowed just six hits, but with three of those hits going yard, the damage was too great for the Indians to overcome on this night.
So the Tribe will have another go at the Tigers on Saturday night, when David Huff will try to win his second game of the season against Detroit’s Doug Fister.