Miggy, Price distance Tigers from Indians
DETROIT -- Miguel Cabrera's monster three-run homer into the camera well in center field at Comerica Park broke a scoreless deadlock, and left-hander David Price tossed a complete-game gem as the Tigers secured a 4-0 win over the Indians on Friday night.
Cleveland starter Danny Salazar kept Detroit off the board through five innings, but he allowed singles to center fielder Anthony Gose and designated hitter Rajai Davis to lead off the sixth. After striking out Ian Kinsler, the right-hander offered a 93-mph belt-high fastball to Cabrera, who launched it over the center-field wall.
"It's a joke," said Tigers third baseman Nick Castellanos. "It's a joke! I can't hit a ball that far from second base."
Detroit's first baseman delivered again in the eighth, driving a C.C. Lee fastball into the right-center-field gap for an RBI double.
The Indians managed seven hits against Price, but they grounded into four inning-ending double plays. The lefty retired Cleveland with 10 pitches -- all strikes -- in the first, setting the tone early for his second complete game in a row.
Over seven innings, Salazar allowed three runs on seven hits, ending with six strikeouts and one walk.
"I thought Danny pitched so good," Indians manager Terry Francona said. "For five, six innings, he was matching Price. Unfortunately, the two guys up before Miggy get hits and he tried to throw him a cutter. It was probably middle-middle and he does with it what he does with mistakes. Other than that, Danny really did pitch really well."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Tape-measure shot: Cabrera struck out on an elevated, 97-mph fastball against Salazar in the fourth inning, but the slugger wasn't going to be fooled twice. With two runners aboard in the sixth, Cabrera attacked a first-pitch fastball, providing all the damage necessary to support Price's gem. The blast was Cabrera's 13th of the season. More >
"The velocity wasn't the same. It was just one bad pitch," Salazar said. "I was trying to go outside with the fastball. I was thinking too much to get it there, because he likes to swing first pitch." More >
Running wild: With one out and runners on first and second base in the first inning, Yoenis Cespedes chopped a pitch back to Salazar, who tossed it to first baseman Carlos Santana for a routine out. Davis tried to catch Cleveland napping, sprinting from second base to home on the play. Santana quickly relayed the ball to catcher Yan Gomes, who applied the tag in time for an inning-ending double play.
"It's actually not a bad idea to do that," Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said. "They had to make two perfect throws, actually, to get him. He nearly made it anyway. If there isn't two perfect throws by the Indians, we get a run there."
Robbin' Raburn: Ryan Raburn looked comfortable patrolling left field in his old home ballpark, twice taking away extra bases from the Tigers. In the first inning, with Davis on second base, the 34-year-old sacrificed his body to keep the game scoreless, snaring a Kinsler line drive and slamming into the fence. When catcher James McCann tested Raburn with a sinking drive in the fifth, the left fielder covered a lot of ground to make another impressive catch.
"He's been so good out there," Francona said. "He's running balls down. He's done that a number of times."
Turning two: The Tigers turned four double plays on Friday night, none more impressive than a 6-4-3 connection to end the Indians' half of the sixth. Jose Iglesias showcased his range and backhanded a sharp Santana grounder, then flipped to second to retire Mike Aviles. Kinsler made the quick relay to first base, where Cabrera stretched to complete the twin killing. The 35,379 at Comerica Price roared, and Price shook his head in disbelief, smiling and applauding as he walked to the dugout.
"I think that might be the best double play I've ever seen turned -- ever," Ausmus said.
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
• Cabrera has been a one-man wrecking crew against the Indians this season. With his showing on Friday night, the two-time Most Valuable Player is sporting a .654 (17-for-26) average with four home runs and 13 RBIs in seven games against Cleveland.
• The Tigers have won 11 of Price's 13 starts this season.
Indians: Right-hander Carlos Carrasco will take the mound against the Tigers on Saturday, aiming to bounce back from a rough start his last time out. On Sunday, Carrasco allowed five runs on seven hits in four innings, ending a streak of seven straight starts in which he logged at least six frames. Even with the subpar showing, the righty is 3-1 with a 3.24 ERA in his past four turns for the Tribe.
Tigers: Justin Verlander will make his long-awaited season debut on Saturday against Cleveland. The right-hander, who was placed on the disabled list on March 29 with a right triceps strain, pitched two rehab outings at Triple-A Toledo. He was dominant in the second start, striking out nine over 5 2/3 innings last weekend. First pitch at Comerica Park is scheduled for 4:08 p.m. ET.
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