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Tigers pitching struggles in 13-3 loss to Seattle

Phil Coke got off to an awful start, and it just snowballed from there for the Detroit Tigers.

Ichiro Suzuki jogged down to first after five pitches. Coke threw four more and Chone Figgins was on base, beginning a brutal night of pitching for the Tigers.

Detroit issued 11 walks and yielded 15 hits in a 13-3 loss at Seattle on Tuesday night. It was a season high in runs and hits for the Mariners, along with the most runs allowed by the Tigers this season.

"He didn't have any command of his fastball. He didn't have any command of the strike zone," Tigers manager Jim Leyland said of Coke. "We didn't all night. We walked 11 guys. Up here you've got to be able to pound the strike zone."

The loss capped a miserable day for the Tigers, who also placed catcher Victor Martinez on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right groin. Martinez was hurt in Monday night's win, aggravating the injury after first tweaking his groin Saturday against Oakland.

Leyland said before Tuesday's game he was kicking himself for playing Martinez and not giving him more time to rest, even though Martinez worked out before Monday's game and said he felt fine.

With Martinez out and Magglio Ordonez getting a day off, the middle of the Tigers' lineup lacked some pop. But with the way Detroit pitched, it hardly mattered.

Coke lasted just 3 2-3 innings, after throwing seven shutout innings in his last start against Oakland. He gave up six runs, two earned, and walked four, matching his career high.

Enrique Gonzalez, Al Alburquerque and Brad Thomas followed with more of the same, combining to give up seven runs, nine hits and walk another seven batters.

"Based on the way the game was called, it seemed like everything to me. I wasn't effective with anything today," Coke said. "I have nobody to blame but myself."

Seattle scored four times in the first after scoring just one first-inning run in its first 17 games. Coke issued a bases-loaded walk to Jack Cust, but the big blow was Chris Gimenez's two-out, two-strike single that scored a pair. Coke also helped the inning along with his error fielding Milton Bradley's roller in front of the mound.

Still, it was a 6-2 game in the seventh and the Tigers had the bases loaded with one out. Seattle starter Doug Fister (1-3) had just left the game after walking Alex Avila to force in a run.

Jamey Wright entered and got Brandon Inge to ground into a double play on his first pitch.

"Brandon hit the ball hard, just right at the guy," Leyland said. "One more base hit, it's probably 6-4 with one out. We felt like we were still in it."

Seattle then broke the game open with five runs in the bottom half, sending 10 batters to the plate. The big inning included four consecutive hits, highlighted by RBI singles by Suzuki and Bradley, and a two-run single by Figgins.

Getting some run support probably felt quite foreign to Fister. Before this start, the right-hander had received just three runs in his three previous starts this season and only two while he was in the game.

"He's thrown the ball well all year," Seattle manager Eric Wedge said. "It was good we could jump out early and he did a great job of keeping the same mindset you have to have when you go out there and you are a starting pitcher in that type of game."

NOTES: Seattle placed 1B Justin Smoak on the bereavement list early Tuesday, and the team announced later that his father, Keith, had passed away at age 54. ... The Tigers purchased the contract of C Omir Santos from Triple-A Toledo to take Martinez's spot.