Boston at Detroit

W: T. Wakefield (7-3) L: D. Willis (1-3)
S: J. Papelbon (14)
HR: BOS - None   DET - None

Wakefield continues dominance of Tigers as BoSox sweep wire reports

DETROIT -- The Detroit Tigers started the week getting frustrated by Daisuke Matsuzaka and overpowered by Josh Beckett.

On Thursday, they were baffled again by Tim Wakefield.

The 42-year-old knuckleballer beat the Tigers for the 16th time -- the most by any active pitcher -- and the Boston Red Sox beat Detroit 6-3 to finish a three-game sweep.

Wakefield (7-3) gave up three runs and eight hits in 6 2/3 innings.

"He's been a blessing for us," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. "He's a good pitcher. He's unconventional, but that's OK."

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Wakefield allowed three runs in the second inning, but shut down the Tigers after that.

"After that inning, I felt really comfortable," he said. "I only needed 80 pitches, so that's great, and I got some offensive support."

Three Boston relievers finished, with Jonathan Papelbon pitching the ninth for his 14th save in 15 attempts. The Tigers put two runners on base, but Dustin Pedroia's diving stop at second base helped Papelbon escape unscathed.

"I was just trying to get an out," Pedroia said. "I didn't want the tying run to come to the plate."

Dontrelle Willis (1-3) took a step back in his comeback from control problems, allowing five runs in 2 1/3 innings despite not giving up a hit. He walked five batters and hit another with a pitch.

"I threw a couple good pitches and I didn't get the calls, and I let myself get flustered," Willis said. "That's the first time that's happened in my career, but you can't do that against the Red Sox. It was just mental."

Detroit went ahead 3-0 in the second, but lost Miguel Cabrera in the process. Cabrera hurt his left hamstring going from first to second on Curtis Granderson's single and was barely able to run while coming home on Brandon Inge's two-run double. Adam Everett added an RBI groundout later in the inning.

Cabrera said after the game that he doesn't think the injury is serious.

"We'll see how I feel, but it isn't too bad," he said. "I'm hoping to play tomorrow."

Jeff Larish replaced Cabrera at first base in the third, when Boston rallied for six runs to chase Willis.

After starting the inning with a hit batter and a walk, Willis struck out George Kottaras, but then walked the next three batters to force in a pair of runs.

Tigers manager Jim Leyland took Willis out at that point, but was ejected by plate umpire Jeff Nelson for arguing balls and strikes before he even made it back to the dugout.

"I want to say that I apologize to the umpires for that -- I was out of line," Leyland said. "There were a couple borderline pitches that could have gone either way, but you aren't going to get those calls when you are wild."

Zach Miner replaced Willis and immediately gave up a two-run double to Jason Bay, putting the Red Sox up 4-3. Mike Lowell's groundout scored the fifth run, and Rocco Baldelli made it 6-3 with a single.

"It seemed like we got a little momentum after they hit Jacoby [Ellsbury] to start the inning," Francona said. "After that, Willis just had a tough inning."

The Tigers nearly scored in the sixth, but Larish's long fly went just foul down the right-field line. Detroit questioned the decision, leading to the first video replay in Comerica Park history. The umpires only needed a few moments to uphold the call.

"Umpires are amazing," said Leyland, who had watched the play on television in his office. "I must have seen 10 replays before I was sure they had it right, but they did."


  • Boston DH David Ortiz, hitting .187 with one homer, had the day off. Ortiz said he is considering having his eyes examined.
  • Miner left after four innings of relief with a strained right calf and is day to day.
  • Red Sox 1B Kevin Youkilis, who left Wednesday's game with a bruised ankle after a collision at first, came out in the fourth inning with tightness in his right calf. The team said the move was strictly precautionary.
  • Mark Buehrle has 14 wins over Detroit, while Jon Garland and CC Sabathia have beaten the Tigers 13 times each.
Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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Tim Wakefield beats the Tigers for the 16th time -- the most by an active pitcher. (AP)
Tim Wakefield beats the Tigers for the 16th time -- the most by an active pitcher. (AP)

Players of the Game

B. Inge
AB 4
R 1
H 3
HR 0

J. Bay
AB 5
R 1
H 1
HR 0

Related Video

Boston Red Sox
Dustin Pedroia, 2B4110103 .325
J.D. Drew, DH1101410 .253
Kevin Youkilis, 1B1101100 .362
   a- Mark Kotsay, PH-1B3000004 .000
Jason Bay, LF5112022 .283
Mike Lowell, 3B4021101 .302
Rocco Baldelli, RF3011102 .265
Jacoby Ellsbury, CF3110011 .313
Julio Lugo, SS3100113 .266
George Kottaras, C4000025 .188
a-flied out for Youkilis in the 4th
2B - Jason Bay (14, Miner)
RBI - J.D. Drew (27), Kevin Youkilis (34), Jason Bay 2 (53), Mike Lowell (36), Rocco Baldelli (7)
2-OUT RBI - Rocco Baldelli (1)
Team LOB - 8
DP - Pedroia-Kotsay, Wakefield-Pedroia-Lugo-Kotsay
Boston Red Sox
Tim Wakefield (W,7-3) 6.2833030 4.50
Justin Masterson (H,2) 0.2000020 4.20
Hideki Okajima (H,9) 0.2100010 2.25
Jonathan Papelbon (S,14) 1100100 2.25
Pitches-Strikes - Tim Wakefield 81-59, Justin Masterson 11-8, Hideki Okajima 10-8, Jonathan Papelbon 21-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Tim Wakefield 8-6, Hideki Okajima 1-0, Jonathan Papelbon 2-1
Batters Faced - Tim Wakefield 25, Justin Masterson 2, Hideki Okajima 3, Jonathan Papelbon 5
Detroit Tigers
Clete Thomas, RF4000011 .247
Ramon Santiago, 2B4020000 .306
Magglio Ordonez, DH4010002 .275
Miguel Cabrera, 1B1110000 .354
    Jeff Larish, 1B2000102 .224
Curtis Granderson, CF4110011 .271
Brandon Inge, 3B4132000 .280
Ryan Raburn, LF4010013 .265
Adam Everett, SS3001011 .267
   a- Placido Polanco, PH1000002 .250
Dane Sardinha, C2010010 .115
   b- Gerald Laird, PH-C1000010 .224
a-hit into fielder's choice for Everett in the 9th
b-struck out for Sardinha in the 8th
2B - Brandon Inge (8, Wakefield), Ryan Raburn (2, Wakefield)
RBI - Brandon Inge 2 (35), Adam Everett (18)
CS - Brandon Inge (3, 2nd base by Wakefield/Kottaras)
Team LOB - 5
DP - Everett-Santiago-Cabrera, Inge-Santiago-Larish
Detroit Tigers
Dontrelle Willis (L,1-3) 2.1055530 6.84
Zach Miner 4411220 5.29
Ryan Perry 0.2000000 3.27
Joel Zumaya 1200110 2.65
Fernando Rodney 1000110 2.86
HBP - Ellsbury (by Dontrelle Willis)
Pitches-Strikes - Dontrelle Willis 53-24, Zach Miner 67-40, Ryan Perry 4-4, Joel Zumaya 24-16, Fernando Rodney 24-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Dontrelle Willis 3-0, Zach Miner 4-5, Joel Zumaya 2-0
Batters Faced - Dontrelle Willis 12, Zach Miner 17, Ryan Perry 2, Joel Zumaya 6, Fernando Rodney 4
Game Information
Attendance - 31353
Game Time - 2:53
Temperature - 61
Umpires - Home - Jeff Nelson, First Base - Mark Carlson, Second Base - Tim Tschida, Third Base - Bob Davidson