Anibal Sanchez’ strong start lifts Tigers past Tribe
Cleveland, OH, United States (4E Sports) – Anibal Sanchez brought a no-hit bid into the seventh inning and batterymate Alex Avila had two RBIs to lead the Detroit Tigers to an important 5-3 victory over the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field.
Sanchez (3-5) only allowed one Indian to reach base after hitting Shin-Soo Choo on the foot in the fourth inning but Carlos Santana’s triple in the seventh broke his bid for a second career no-hitter.
Sanchez, who had his first no-hitter with the Florida Marlins on Sept. 6, 2006 against the Arizona Diamondbacks, allowed two earned runs on three hits while striking out seven in 6 2/3 innings to earn his first win since Aug. 22.
Jose Valverde pitched a scoreless ninth to earn his 31st save in 35 chances.
The win was the fourth straight for the Tigers, who remained a game behind the first-place White Sox, who also had a no-hit bid from Francisco Liriano thwarted in the seventh before holding on to beat the Twins, 5-3.
The Tigers eye a three-game sweep of the Indians Sunday with Rick Porcello (9-12) on the mound against Ubaldo Jimenez (9-16).
Andy Dirks opened scoring when he reached home after a fielding error by Lonnie Chisenhall before Avila drove an RBI single to give the Tigers a 2-0 lead.
Austin Jackson hit an RBI sacrifice fly to center in the fourth inning for a 3-0 Tigers lead. Avila added another run with a double in the fifth and almost gave Detroit a 5-0 lead when he ran to score from second but did not step on third base.
In the seventh, Miguel Cabrera hit his 37th homer of the year to hand Detroit a 5-0 lead before Santana’s double sparked a two-run seventh for the Indians to trim the gap to 5-2. Asdrubal Cabrera pegged the final score with an RBI single in the eighth.
Cleveland starter Justin Masterson (11-14) allowed four runs on six hits in just 4 2/3 innings. He struck out eight and walked five before he was replaced by Tony Sipp.