Tigers-Mets Preview

While the Detroit Tigers just got the best of the New York Mets’

ace, they face another potential difficult matchup.

The visiting Tigers go for a three-game sweep of the Mets, who

send Dillon Gee – one of baseball’s hottest pitchers over the last

three months – to the mound Sunday.

Max Scherzer outdueled Matt Harvey in a rematch of All-Star game

starters, leading Detroit (76-53) to a 3-0 win Saturday. Scherzer,

who joined Rube Marquard in 1912 and Roger Clemens in 2001 as the

only pitchers to start 19-1 in a season, also delivered an RBI

double – one of the team’s 15 hits.

The Tigers, who have posted a .328 average in winning five of

seven, have collected at least 11 hits in all but one of those

games. Omar Infante and Andy Dirks both had three hits Saturday,

while Miguel Cabrera, Austin Jackson and Matt Tuiasosopo each added


Cabrera, batting a major league-best .356, is 18 for 47 (.383)

with seven homers and 18 RBIs in his last 11 road games. Jackson is

12 for 27 (.444) with two homers, six RBIs and eight runs during a

six-game hitting streak.

The Tigers, though, could have a hard time keeping things going

against Gee (9-8, 3.60 ERA), whose 2.27 ERA since May 30 ranks

third-best in the majors in that span.

“This is what we’ve known him to be in the past,” manager Terry

Collins said of Gee, who is 3-1 with an even more impressive 1.47

ERA in his last seven starts. “I wouldn’t be at all surprised if

you look up in the next six weeks, and he’s going to have 14 or 15


Gee had everything working again Monday in a 6-1 win at

Minnesota, yielding one unearned run and striking out nine in 7 2-3


“It helps to have the help that I’ve had. I’ve had great

catchers calling great games, and Juan (Lagares) tracks down

everything there in center field,” Gee said. “It gives you

confidence to keep attacking.”

Gee has been nearly untouchable in three outings against the AL

this season, going 2-0 with a 0.82 ERA and 25 strikeouts in 22

innings. This will be his first matchup versus Detroit.

The punchless Mets (58-69) may need another gem from Gee if they

hope to get back on track. New York is hitting .206 and has managed

just two runs during a three-game losing streak.

The Mets will try to break out against Tigers starter Rick

Porcello (9-7, 4.52), who is coming off his first loss since June

30. The right-hander had gone 5-0 with a 2.62 ERA over a

seven-start stretch before surrendering five runs in 4 1-3 innings

Tuesday in a 6-3 defeat to Minnesota.

Porcello was hit hard in his only meeting against the Mets,

giving up seven runs and 11 hits – one shy of his career high – in

3 2-3 innings in a 14-3 loss June 28, 2011.

Like Gee, he has impressed in three interleague starts this

year, going 2-0 with a 2.66 ERA. Porcello is also 5-2 with a 2.36

ERA in his last eight road outings.

Detroit’s Victor Martinez, who caught for the first time in more

than two years on Friday night, is expected back after sitting out

Saturday. Shortstop Jose Iglesias, though, is uncertain to be

available again due to a sore left elbow.