Boston at Detroit

Final 11th
W: D. Below (2-0) L: M. Melancon (0-2)
HR: BOS - A. Gonzalez (1)   DET - M. Cabrera (3),A. Avila (2)

Tigers top Red Sox on walk-off wire reports

DETROIT -- Alex Avila's drive sailed to deep right field, barely clearing both an outfielder and a wall.

An exhilarating opening series at Comerica Park was finally over, and the Detroit catcher could look forward to some much-needed rest.

"I'm too tired right now," Avila said. "I'm glad we have an off day [Monday]. This weekend has been crazy."

Avila's two-run homer with two outs in the bottom of the 11th inning gave the Tigers a stunning 13-12 victory over Boston on Sunday, leaving the Red Sox winless in three games under new manager Bobby Valentine.

Detroit swept the season-opening series, scoring 26 runs and winning twice in its final at-bat.

The Tigers trailed 10-7 on Sunday when Miguel Cabrera tied the game with a three-run shot off Alfredo Aceves in the ninth. Boston then scored twice in the 11th, but Mark Melancon (0-2) couldn't hold the lead.

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Cabrera and Prince Fielder singled with one out before a wild pitch sent Cabrera to third and Delmon Young's sacrifice fly cut the margin in half. Avila followed with a drive to right and Cody Ross tried to make a leaping catch, but the ball appeared to hit a restraining gate just above the wall before caroming back onto the field.

Avila paused near second, then was waved around the bases by the umpires. The play was not reviewed. Valentine said he asked and was assured by umpires that the ball had clearly hit the railing above the fence.

"You don't see those kinds of games at this level very often," Avila said. "There's really no rhyme or reason or explanation for it."

Duane Below (2-0) got one out for the win -- even though Detroit manager Jim Leyland said he wouldn't be available -- in a game that lasted 4 hours, 45 minutes. Cabrera had five RBIs.

The Red Sox and New York Yankees are both off to 0-3 starts -- the first time that's happened since 1966, according to STATS LLC.

Boston is without newly acquired closer Andrew Bailey, who had surgery on his right thumb. Melancon and Aceves are the primary candidates to close in Bailey's absence, and both blew saves on Sunday.

"This is a work in progress," Valentine said. "We're three days in after losing our closer, and we're still trying to figure it out."

Nick Punto and Dustin Pedroia hit RBI singles in the 11th to give Boston the lead, but it didn't hold up. Adrian Gonzalez homered earlier for the Red Sox.

"Our guys played a hell of a game," Valentine said. "We had a walk-off loss on opening day, then got beat 10-0 and were down 4-0 in the first inning today -- but we fought back and took them 11 innings."

Detroit beat the Red Sox 3-2 in Thursday's opener on a ninth-inning hit by Austin Jackson, then cruised to a blowout Saturday. The Tigers seemed on their way to another easy win when Jhonny Peralta's three-run double in the first inning gave them a 4-0 lead, but starter Max Scherzer couldn't hold it.

Scherzer allowed seven runs on eight hits in 2 2-3 innings, but Boston's Clay Buchholz wasn't much better. He allowed seven runs on eight hits in four innings in what was his first start since June because of a stress fracture in his back.

Buchholz had gone 42 consecutive starts since the beginning of 2010 without allowing more than five earned runs.

Detroit reliever Daniel Schlereth allowed a two-run homer to Gonzalez on the first pitch he threw after coming on in the sixth. That gave Boston a 9-7 lead, and Vicente Padilla pitched four scoreless innings of relief for the Red Sox after replacing Buchholz.

The 34-year-old Padilla kept the powerful Detroit lineup off balance, at one point lobbing consecutive pitches of 54 and 52 mph on the stadium gun to Fielder in the seventh.

Punto made it 10-7 with an RBI infield single in the ninth, but Jackson and Brennan Boesch led off the bottom of the inning with singles, and Cabrera tied it.

"We've got to get this straight: It's not about Prince and me," Cabrera said. "We've got 25 guys, it's about the Detroit Tigers, it's about everybody here. We feel comfortable about everybody here so let's play ball and play hard."


  • The Tigers placed RHP Doug Fister (strained left side) on the 15-day disabled list and recalled RHP Brayan Villarreal from Triple-A Toledo, moves they announced after Saturday's game.
  • Valentine went out onto the field after Gonzalez was hit by a pitch from Phil Coke in the eighth. The umpires then warned both benches, which appeared to annoy the Boston manager even more.
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.
Tigers catcher Alex Avila connects for a two-out, two-strike walk-off home run in the 11th inning. (US Presswire)
Tigers catcher Alex Avila connects for a two-out, two-strike walk-off home run in the 11th inning. (US Presswire)

Players of the Game

M. Cabrera
AB 5
R 3
H 3
HR 1

M. Aviles
AB 5
R 2
H 3
HR 0

Related Video

Boston Red Sox
Nick Punto, 3B6033002 .500
Jacoby Ellsbury, CF6121125 .154
Dustin Pedroia, 2B6021115 .231
Adrian Gonzalez, 1B6222014 .385
David Ortiz, DH6231023 .417
Darnell McDonald, LF5210123 .167
Ryan Sweeney, RF4110003 .455
   a- Cody Ross, PH-RF1110100 .111
Mike Aviles, SS5233000 .273
Kelly Shoppach, C3100022 .250
   b- Jarrod Saltalamacchia, PH-C1000012 .143
a-singled for Sweeney in the 9th
b-struck out for Shoppach in the 11th
2B - Nick Punto (1, Schlereth), Jacoby Ellsbury (1, Balester), David Ortiz (2, Scherzer), Mike Aviles (1, Scherzer)
HR - Adrian Gonzalez (1, Schlereth)
SF - Nick Punto (1)
SH - Mike Aviles (1)
RBI - Nick Punto 3 (3), Jacoby Ellsbury (1), Dustin Pedroia (1), Adrian Gonzalez 2 (2), David Ortiz (2), Mike Aviles 3 (3)
2-OUT RBI - Nick Punto (1), Jacoby Ellsbury (1), Dustin Pedroia (1)
SB - Dustin Pedroia (1, 2nd base off Below/Avila)
Team LOB - 13
DP - Punto-Pedroia-Gonzalez
Boston Red Sox
Clay Buchholz 4877220 15.75
Vicente Padilla 4200040 2.08
Alfredo Aceves (BS,1)0333001 0.00
Franklin Morales 2100030 0.00
Mark Melancon (BS,1; L,0-2) 0.2333001 36.00
HBP - Raburn (by Clay Buchholz)
WP - Franklin Morales (1), Mark Melancon (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Clay Buchholz 78-50, Vicente Padilla 51-36, Alfredo Aceves 7-5, Franklin Morales 29-19, Mark Melancon 20-15
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Clay Buchholz 4-5, Vicente Padilla 5-3, Franklin Morales 1-2, Mark Melancon 1-1
Batters Faced - Clay Buchholz 22, Vicente Padilla 14, Alfredo Aceves 3, Franklin Morales 7, Mark Melancon 5
Detroit Tigers
Austin Jackson, CF6340022 .571
Brennan Boesch, RF6121024 .133
Miguel Cabrera, 3B5335000 .455
Prince Fielder, 1B6220011 .417
Delmon Young, DH5011012 .231
Alex Avila, C4212201 .417
Jhonny Peralta, SS5013021 .417
Andy Dirks, LF4010002 .375
   a- Danny Worth, PH-2B10100001.000
Ryan Raburn, 2B-LF4210012 .167
a-singled for Dirks in the 10th
2B - Austin Jackson (2, Buchholz), Jhonny Peralta (2, Buchholz)
HR - Miguel Cabrera (3, Aceves), Alex Avila (2, Melancon)
SF - Miguel Cabrera (1), Delmon Young (1)
RBI - Brennan Boesch (1), Miguel Cabrera 5 (8), Delmon Young (1), Alex Avila 2 (5), Jhonny Peralta 3 (3)
2-OUT RBI - Alex Avila 2 (3), Jhonny Peralta 3 (3)
Team LOB - 6
Detroit Tigers
Max Scherzer 2.2877230 23.63
Collin Balester 2.2211000 3.38
Daniel Schlereth 2211021 4.50
Brayan Villarreal 0.1000000 0.00
Phil Coke 0.2211010 6.75
Octavio Dotel 0.2100010 0.00
Joaquin Benoit 1.2322230 6.75
Duane Below (W,2-0) 0.1000010 0.00
HBP - Shoppach (by Max Scherzer), Shoppach (by Max Scherzer), Gonzalez (by Phil Coke)
WP - Phil Coke (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Max Scherzer 80-51, Collin Balester 29-17, Daniel Schlereth 20-17, Brayan Villarreal 3-3, Phil Coke 11-6, Octavio Dotel 10-7, Joaquin Benoit 44-25, Duane Below 9-6
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Collin Balester 4-4, Daniel Schlereth 3-1, Brayan Villarreal 1-0, Phil Coke 1-0, Octavio Dotel 1-0
Batters Faced - Max Scherzer 20, Collin Balester 10, Daniel Schlereth 8, Brayan Villarreal 1, Phil Coke 5, Octavio Dotel 3, Joaquin Benoit 10, Duane Below 1
Game Information
Attendance - 30788
Game Time - 4:45
Temperature - 58
Umpires - Home - Dan Iassogna, First Base - C.B. Bucknor, Second Base - Dale Scott, Third Base - Bill Miller