Cabrera continues to haunt Cleveland
Miggy's 38th career home run against Indians tops all active players
DETROIT -- Miguel Cabrera left town for the Tigers' next road trip Sunday night dressed in an all-white suit and tie. The Cleveland Indians left town ready to show Cabrera the white flag again.
A day after Indians pitchers intentionally walked Cabrera three times en route to his first career four-walk game, Carlos Carrasco threw him strikes in the Tigers' 8-6 win on Sunday. Cabrera ended up with a pair of singles and a two-run homer in a three-RBI game that added to his reputation as a Cleveland nemesis.
Considering what Cabrera has already done against the Indians this season -- now 15-for-23 (.652) with three homers and nine RBIs -- Tribe pitchers might settle for giving up singles. Considering what the Tigers' offense did around him this weekend, so will Cabrera.
"You don't have to do too much," Cabrera said. "If you're trying to say, 'OK, I'm trying to hit a double, home run,' it's not going to happen. When you've got speed in front of you and they get on base, you have to take advantage, make something happen. We did that a lot today and it worked for us."
Unlike Saturday, none of Cabrera's trips to the plate were natural situations for an intentional walk. He stepped to the plate in the opening inning with Ian Kinsler on first base, no outs and Carrasco struggling. After a first-pitch fastball for a strike, Carrasco tried to pound him inside, only to watch Cabrera turn and line it into left field for a single that sent Kinsler to third and set up a Victor Martinez sacrifice fly.
Cabrera led off the third inning and struggled with a couple of offspeed pitches before getting a fastball off the plate, which he sent up the middle for another single. He scored two batters later.
Cabrera's one situation with runners in scoring position was the one at-bat where Carrasco beat him, using offspeed pitches to get ahead. Cabrera shrugged off a fastball off the outside corner to run the count full, then swung and missed on a slider just off the plate.
The offspeed pitch was something new for him.
"You think you know these guys and then coming into the season, they throw another pitch," Cabrera said. "I don't know what to call it, a changeup, a split, like 88, so it's kind of tough when a guy throws 97 with a sharp slider, cutter, and now he's gonna throw more changeups.
"It's going to be tough to face him a lot, but what can we do? We've gotta battle. We've gotta get the pitch count up and try to get him out."
The Tigers knocked out Carrasco three batters later. By the time Cabrera came up in the sixth, he had Rajai Davis on first and two outs facing Indians reliever Scott Atchison, who left a slider over the plate and paid for it.
Cabrera's 38th career home run against the Indians tops all active players, and moved him into a tie with Carlton Fisk and Ken Griffey Jr. for 15th all-time. Cabrera's 121 career RBIs against the Tribe are also first among active players.