Leyland: Valverde, Benoit unavailable for Game 5

Tigers manager Jim Leyland says relievers Jose Valverde and

Joaquin Benoit won’t pitch in Thursday’s fifth game of the AL

championship series.

Detroit trails the Texas Rangers 3-1 in the ALCS but sends ace

Justin Verlander to the mound for Game 5. Leyland says he hopes the

Tigers can make it through this game using just Verlander and

reliever Phil Coke.

Valverde, Detroit’s closer, has pitched 4 1-3 innings in the

last three days. He took the loss when Texas beat the Tigers 7-3 in

11 innings Wednesday night.

Benoit has thrown four innings in the last three days.