Cleveland at Detroit

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Cleveland (58-75)0000000300380
Detroit (72-61) «1000002001450

Tigers nip Indians on Polanco's sac fly in 10th, complete sweep

CBSSports.com wire reports
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DETROIT -- This is exactly what Nate Robertson was hoping for when he had left elbow surgery in June.

Robertson pitched six shutout innings in his second start of the season, Placido Polanco hit a sacrifice fly in the 10th and the Detroit Tigers beat the Cleveland Indians 4-3 on Thursday to complete a three-game sweep.

Robertson spent the first part of the year in the bullpen, then missed two months after having surgery to remove fatty deposits from his elbow. He gave up two runs, one earned, over four innings in his first start against Tampa Bay on Saturday.

"I knew when I had the surgery that everything was going to have to go right for me to even have a chance of pitching again this season," he said. "But this is exactly what I've had my mind set on doing. I wanted to come back, I wanted to start, and I wanted to help us win games in the pennant race."

  Tigers' Washburn to miss next start

The Tigers increased their lead in the AL Central to five games over the idle Twins. Catcher Gerald Laird said Wednesday that it was starting to feel like Detroit is in "the driver's seat," but manager Jim Leyland cautioned against such talk after the Tigers' latest win.

"I don't like comments like that," he said. "There's no reason for them. Our players should feel good about themselves and what they've done, but there's no need to talk. Just go out there and keep doing it."

Zach Miner (6-4) pitched 2 1/3 hitless innings to get the win, shutting down the Indians after they pushed across three runs in the eighth to tie it.

"The way we're swinging the bat, especially at home, I knew it was just a matter of time," Miner said. "I knew that if I could get a couple innings, we'd be bound to score a run."

Ryan Raburn led off the Detroit 10th with a double. Rafael Perez (4-3) then intentionally walked Miguel Cabrera and issued an unintentional free pass to Magglio Ordonez. Polanco followed with a fly ball to center and Raburn scored standing up.

"I got banged around pretty well in the celebration, but it's worth it to get a win like this," Raburn said.

The Indians dropped to 4-11 against Detroit this season.

"We've played a lot of games against them this year that were one run or tied, but we haven't done a good job of finishing them off," manager Eric Wedge said. "We always seem to come up a bit short."

Fausto Carmona allowed three runs and four hits in 6 1/3 innings for Cleveland. He walked five and struck out four.

"My sinker was working really well, and the Tigers' aggressive approach helped me get outs," he said. "I just started to work too fast, and it hurt me."

Curtis Granderson homered on Carmona's third pitch and Clete Thomas added a two-run triple in the seventh. Carmona walked Adam Everett and Granderson before Thomas' big hit.

Cleveland wasted two nice opportunities against Robertson. With runners on first and second in the third, Jamey Carroll bounced into a fielder's choice and Asdrubal Cabrera popped out. Grady Sizemore grounded into an inning-ending double play with runners on the corners in the fifth.

"He was a different pitcher than we saw earlier in the year," Wedge said of Robertson. "He pounded the zone and he had everything working."

The Indians rallied in the eighth. Cabrera had a two-out RBI single off Fu-Te Ni and Shin-Soo Choo followed with a tying two-run double.

Notes

  • Granderson's drive was his fifth leadoff homer of the season and No. 22 for his career.
  • Everett drew a career-high three walks.
  • Ordonez batted twice after entering the game as a pinch hitter, and now has 421 plate appearance on the season. He needs 36 more in Detroit's final 29 games to trigger his $18 million option for 2010.
  • Tigers starter Jarrod Washburn will miss his scheduled start on Tuesday with a sore left knee. Armando Galarraga is expected to replace him, with Washburn returning Sept. 10 against Kansas City.
 
Copyright 2014 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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Placido Polanco gets mobbed after hitting the winner for Detroit, which ups its division lead to five games. (AP)
Placido Polanco gets mobbed after hitting the winner for Detroit, which ups its division lead to five games. (AP)

Players of the Game
Detroit

C. Granderson
AB 4
R 2
H 1
HR 1
RBI 1
Cleveland

S. Choo
AB 4
R 0
H 1
HR 0
RBI 2
 

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Cleveland Indians
Grady Sizemore, CF4010102 .248
Jamey Carroll, 2B5110012 .289
Asdrubal Cabrera, SS5111002 .314
Shin-Soo Choo, DH4012020 .302
Jhonny Peralta, 3B3000010 .274
Matt LaPorta, RF4010002 .277
Andy Marte, 1B4000011 .253
Michael Brantley, LF3010110 .400
Kelly Shoppach, C3120100 .212
Totals3538336  
Batting
2B - Shin-Soo Choo (33, Ni), Kelly Shoppach (12, Perry)
RBI - Asdrubal Cabrera (56), Shin-Soo Choo 2 (74)
2-OUT RBI - Asdrubal Cabrera (23), Shin-Soo Choo 2 (32)
SB - Michael Brantley (1, 2nd base off Robertson/Avila)
CS - Michael Brantley (1, 2nd base by Miner/Laird)
Team LOB - 6
Cleveland Indians
Fausto Carmona 6.1433541 6.08
Tony Sipp 0.2000120 3.41
Chris Perez 2000030 3.33
Rafael Perez (L,4-3) 0.1111200 7.15
IBB - Cabrera by Tony Sipp, Cabrera by Rafael Perez
HBP - Thomas (by Fausto Carmona)
Pitches-Strikes - Fausto Carmona 100-55, Tony Sipp 15-6, Chris Perez 33-20, Rafael Perez 13-5
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Fausto Carmona 9-6, Chris Perez 1-2
Batters Faced - Fausto Carmona 29, Tony Sipp 3, Chris Perez 6, Rafael Perez 4
Detroit Tigers
Curtis Granderson, CF4211112 .256
Clete Thomas, RF4012020 .250
Carlos Guillen, LF3000012 .246
   a- Ryan Raburn, PH-LF2110011 .272
Miguel Cabrera, 1B3010200 .337
Aubrey Huff, DH3000011 .243
   b- Magglio Ordonez, PH-DH1000112 .280
Alex Avila, C2000100 .308
   c- Placido Polanco, PH-2B1001000 .273
Brandon Inge, 3B4000001 .235
Ramon Santiago, 2B4010010 .259
    Gerald Laird, C0000000 .222
Adam Everett, SS1100310 .240
Totals3245489  
a-struck out for Guillen in the 7th
b-struck out for Huff in the 7th
c-flied out for Avila in the 8th
Batting
2B - Ryan Raburn (10, R. Perez)
3B - Clete Thomas (3, Carmona)
HR - Curtis Granderson (26, Carmona)
SF - Placido Polanco (3)
RBI - Curtis Granderson (60), Clete Thomas 2 (38), Placido Polanco (60)
Team LOB - 10
Fielding
DP - Everett-Santiago-Cabrera, Santiago-Everett-Cabrera
PB - Alex Avila (3)
Detroit Tigers
Nate Robertson 6400240 5.52
Ryan Perry (H,6) 1.1111010 4.03
Fu-Te Ni (BS,2) 0.1322000 3.33
Zach Miner (W,6-4) 2.1000110 4.52
HBP - Peralta (by Zach Miner)
Pitches-Strikes - Nate Robertson 80-54, Ryan Perry 20-14, Fu-Te Ni 17-13, Zach Miner 34-18
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Nate Robertson 5-7, Ryan Perry 1-2, Zach Miner 1-4
Batters Faced - Nate Robertson 22, Ryan Perry 5, Fu-Te Ni 4, Zach Miner 8
Game Information
Attendance - 28267
Game Time - 3:06
Temperature - 75
Umpires - Home - Brian O'Nora, First Base - Tom Hallion, Second Base - Kevin Causey, Third Base - Phil Cuzzi