Published July 28, 2013
| Sports Network
Rick Porcello tries to pitch the Detroit Tigers to a three- game sweep of the Philadelphia Phillies on Sunday when the interleague foes wrap up their set at Comerica Park.
On Saturday, Miguel Cabrera homered in his return to the Tigers' lineup and Max Scherzer pitched six scoreless innings to lead Detroit to a 10-0 rout.
Scherzer (15-1), who celebrated his 29th birthday Saturday, struck out seven and didn't walk a batter en route to becoming the first 15-game winner in the majors.
"For us to get some runs for him early was nice," Tigers outfielder Torii Hunter said of Scherzer. "He's been pitching his butt off."
Cabrera had missed Detroit's last four games due to a sore left hip flexor muscle, but scorched a solo homer in his first at-bat and knocked in three runs overall to help the Tigers earn their sixth win in their last seven.
Raul Valdes (1-1) was pushed into action after Philadelphia left-hander Cliff Lee was scratched from his scheduled start with a stiff neck. The spot start was a forgettable one for Valdes, who was tagged for nine runs on 12 hits over 3 2/3 frames to absorb the loss.
Darin Ruf doubled in the second for the lone hit off Scherzer, but the Phillies managed just one more hit the rest of the way in dropping their season-high seventh straight game.
The Phillies, who haven't lost eight in a row since Sept. 18-24, 2011, had two hits Saturday and has managed a mere 10 runs during the slide.
"They came out with hot bats and we came out facing one of the best pitchers in baseball," second baseman Chase Utley said.
Hoping to add to the Phils' woes on Sunday will be Porcello, who has won his last three starts and is pitching to a 1.35 ERA in the month of July. Porcello beat the Chicago White Sox on Tuesday, as he scattered four hits over seven scoreless innings to improve to 7-6, while lowering his ERA to 4.49.
"That first inning was pretty shaky," Porcello said Tuesday. "I think just not being on the mound in a game situation for a while was causing me to kind of be off rhythm. It felt a little foreign, but I battled through it and the guys made some outstanding plays behind me that really helped me out."
Philadelphia, meanwhile, will turn to righty Jonathan Pettibone, who is 5-4 with a 3.97 ERA. Pettibone lost to St. Louis his last time out on Tuesday in St. Louis, as the Cards reached him for three runs and seven hits in five innings.
"They were patient early on when I was kind of in control," Pettibone said after the outing. "Then, when things started going the other way, they started to be more aggressive, a couple of first-pitch knocks and stuff. They kind of teeter-tottered throughout the game, staying aggressive, then remaining patient. They have a good lineup throughout, and they got the best of us."
This series marks the Phillies' first trip to Detroit since pulling off a series sweep in the 2002 season.