Reporting Matt Loede
CLEVELAND (92.3 The Fan) – The Indians entered Friday’s game 2-0 against Justin Verlander in 2012. The 2011 Cy Young award winner did all he could to make sure it would not be 3-0.
Verlander went 7 innings, allowing no runs, 6 hits with one walk and six strikeouts as the Tigers topped the Indians 4-0 at Progressive Field.
The Tigers ace improved to 14-8 on the season, and while he got the win, he did have some good defense behind him which helped him earn the win.
The Indians put two runners on in each and 5th and 6th innings, and both times Verlander worked out of it with a key out, and then wrapped up the inning with some solid defense from his infield.
In the 5th Prince Fielder made a diving snag of a ground ball from Jason Donald, flipping it to Verlander for the third out of the inning.
In the 6th, with runners on second and third with two outs, Miguel Cabrera made a nice play on a grounder by Casey Kotchman, just getting him at first to keep the score intact.
Corey Kluber started for the Indians, and it appeared he was going to have a short night after the way things started.
He retired the first two batters, but then allowed four straight singles as the Tigers took a 2-0 lead in the first with a RBI each to Delmon Young and Brennan Boesch.
They pushed it to 4-0 in the second, as Austin Jackson doubled in catcher Alex Avilia who walked, and then Jackson scored on a single by Cabrera.
Verlander wound up throwing 110 pitches, but keeps Detroit in contention in the AL Central as they remain a game behind the White Sox.
Saturday the Indians and Tigers will go at it in game two of the three game set at 4pm. Anibal Sanchez goes for the Tigers against Justin Masterson for the Indians.