Tigers get shut out in Cleveland, waste another Verlander gem
CLEVELAND (AP) — Justin Verlander’s superb outing couldn’t prevent the Detroit Tigers from falling further behind in the AL Central race.
Verlander allowed one hit in seven innings — Jason Kipnis’ leadoff single in the sixth — but the Tigers couldn’t take advantage of an injury to Cleveland starter Carlos Carrasco two pitches in and lost 1-0 in 10 innings on Saturday.
Detroit, which managed four hits off eight relievers, trails AL Central-leading Cleveland by eight games and remained three games back in the wild-card race.
"It’s definitely frustrating when they had to use the bullpen since the beginning of the game and we don’t score a single run," designated hitter Victor Martinez said. "It’s bad. We’re running out of time and losing tonight definitely won’t help anything."
Detroit has lost 13 of 14 to the Indians and been outscored 91-40 in the season series.
"Obviously, this is a tough team loss," Verlander said. "This late in the year, when every game is so important, it hurts. One run was all they needed in the end.
"There are so many variables when you lose, but you do feel the pressure at this point of the season because you know you need to win," Verlander added. "Even though I feel good about the way I pitched, it stinks."
Miguel Cabrera had two hits and needs one to reach 2,500. Detroit advanced just one runner to third base.
Carrasco, the Indians’ No. 2 starting pitcher, will miss the rest of the season after breaking his right hand when hit by a line drive off the bat of Detroit’s Ian Kinsler in the first inning.
Cleveland used a major league record nine pitchers in a shutout of nine or more innings since at least 1913.
"We have to find a way to score, obviously," manager Brad Ausmus said. "I felt like we could’ve been a little better — not for a lack of effort — but to me, this one is more frustrating than last night."
Indians manager Terry Francona and a team trainer immediately went to the mound after Carrasco was hit. The trainer worked with Carrasco to get the feeling back in his hand for several moments before the pitcher walked off the field. Carrasco was sent for X-rays, which revealed the fracture.
Jeff Manship replaced Carrasco after the infield hit. Carrasco missed six weeks earlier this season with a strained left hamstring, also sustained against the Tigers.
Jose Ramirez hit a winning single with the bases loaded in the 10th against Justin Wilson (4-5).
Andrew Miller (8-1), Cleveland’s eighth reliever, pitched the final two innings and completed a four-hitter. Manship, Kyle Crockett, Cody Anderson, Zach McAllister, Perci Garner, Bryan Shaw and Cody Allen preceded Miller.
Tigers: 3B Nick Castellanos (broken left hand) began taking batting practice in Lakeland, Florida, on Saturday and could be activated off the disabled list early next week.
Indians: OF Lonnie Chisenhall (strained abdominal muscle) was announced as a pinch hitter in the ninth inning but was removed following a pitching change.
LHP Daniel Norris (2-2) is to start for Detroit on Sunday and RHP Trevor Bauer (11-7) for Cleveland. Norris had a career-high 11 strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings Monday against Minnesota. Bauer is 3-2 with a 6.64 ERA in eight career starts against the Tigers.