American League Preview from The Sports Network
Thursday, July 26th (All times Eastern)
Detroit Tigers (53-45) at Cleveland Indians (49-49), 7:05 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Detroit - Justin Verlander (11-5, 2.42) Cleveland - Zach McAllister (4-2, 3.21)
(Sports Network) - Justin Verlander goes after his fourth straight win tonight when the Detroit Tigers conclude a three-game set with the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field.
Verlander won for the sixth time in seven starts on Friday against the Chicago White Sox, as he allowed two runs and four hits over eight innings to run his record to 11-5, while lowering his ERA to 2.42.
It was the 62nd straight start in which Verlander worked at least six innings - the longest streak since Steve Carlton's 69-game run from 1979-1982.
Verlander lost to the Indians the last time he faced them and is a mere 13-12 lifetime against them with a 4.70 ERA in 28 starts.
"Any time you can win a game against Verlander, it's pretty impressive," Indians manager Manny Acta said after the game, "because that means that your starter did something really good and you played pretty much perfect baseball defensively."
Meanwhile, getting the ball for the Tribe tonight will be righty Zach McAllister, who is 4-2 with a 3.21 ERA. McAllister lost to the Baltimore Orioles on Saturday, as he surrendered three runs and five hits in 7 2/3 innings. He also struck out six without walking a batter.
"He was terrific. He was as good as I've seen anybody here," Acta said. "He did a fantastic job."
McAllister has faced the Tigers twice without recording a decision, but has pitched to a 1/59 ERA in those outings.
Detroit kept pace with the Chicago White Sox atop the AL Central standings on Wednesday, as Max Scherzer spun seven strong innings of two-run ball to lead the Tigers to a 5-3 win.
Scherzer (10-5) surrendered just three hits and four walks with eight strikeouts to earn his fourth consecutive winning decision. Joaquin Benoit fired a scoreless eighth and Jose Valverde worked around a one- out homer from Travis Hafner to nail down his 19th save of the season.
Quintin Berry registered three hits and two RBI, while Austin Jackson scored twice and also knocked in a run for the Tigers, who have won eight of their last 10 games.
"Tonight he just laid the bat on the ball," said Detroit manager Jim Leyland of Berry. "He's just done a heck of a job for us. I like when he stays within himself like that and doesn't try to do too much."
Derek Lowe (8-9) absorbed the loss after giving up five runs -- four earned on eight hits and three walks over six frames.
Casey Kotchman clubbed a two-run homer, but the Indians had their brief two- game winning streak stopped.
Cleveland is 6-2 against the Tigers this season.
07/26 10:21:34 ET