DETROIT, MI (WTVB) - The Tiger’s offense last night came alive late with four runs scored in the seventh inning and three in the eighth in a 7-to-1 win over the Twins at Comerica Park, where they’ll play the rubber game of the three game series this afternoon. The victory keeps their edge over the second place Indians in the American League Central at 5-and-a-half games after Cleveland last night finished off a 3-game sweep of the Angels. The key hit for Detroit was delivered in the bottom of the seventh by Torii Hunter after Minnesota had taken a 1-to-0 lead in the top of the frame. Hunter came through with a clutch two out, 2-run double after fouling off four pitches, barely making contact with the last one before knocking in the pair of runs on the next pitch he saw. Then in the eighth inning, Miguel Cabrera, who continues to play over a host of injuries, cleared the bases with a three-run double.
It was a no-decision for Tiger starter Anibal Sanchez, who gave up one run and six hits over six and two-third innings. Reliever Drew Smyly earned the victory to improve to 5-and-0. Justin Verlander is scheduled to start for Detroit this afternoon. Then the Tigers head to New York and a 3-game weekend series against the Mets.
The White Sox won last night 5-to-2 at Kansas City while the Cubs fell to the Nationals 11-to-6 at Wrigley Field.
And a baseball milestone last night in the Big Apple where New York Yankees outfielder Ichiro Suzuki recorded the 4,000th hit of his professional career with a first inning single in the game against the Toronto Blue Jays. The 39-year old 10-time All Star joins Pete Rose and Hall of Famer Ty Cobb as the only two other players to reach that elusive mark as big leaguers. Suzuki produced the first 1,278 hits while playing nine years in his native Japan. He was traded from Seattle to the Yankees last July and now has racked up 2,722 hits during his 13 seasons in the American League.