Tigers drop fifth straight, lose 3-2 in 13 innings
CLEVELAND – The Detroit Tigers' second night in Cleveland ended a lot like the first one.
Another frustrating, walk-off loss.
Orlando Cabrera lined an RBI single in the 13th inning to give the Indians their 12th straight home win, 3-2 over the Tigers on Saturday night, sending Detroit to its fifth straight loss.
A day after Carlos Santana hit a game-winning grand slam in the ninth, the Tigers lost in extra innings. Cabrera singled to deep center with the bases loaded and one out off Brayan Villarreal (1-1), spoiling a strong performance by four Detroit pitchers, who combined to strike out 17.
While he took a philosophical approach to Friday night's loss, Tigers manager Jim Leyland was unhappy with his offense Saturday. Solo homers by Miguel Cabrera and Ryan Raburn in the fourth accounted for Detroit's only runs. The Tigers struck out 12 times, stranded 11 baserunners and were 0 for 9 with runners in scoring position.
"We didn't show any patience at the plate," Leyland said. "Swinging at some of the pitches we swung at tonight ... that's just not acceptable for a major league team. That's the way it is. I'm not going to try to sugar coat it. That's just poor concentration."
Detroit's offense has struggled throughout April, which the Tigers finished with a 12-15 record.
"Not hitting is one thing," Leyland said. "I don't have a problem with that, but we're giving them free outs."
Leyland realizes there's only one way that will change.
"That's something the player has to take care of," he said. "You can talk until you're blue in the face, but the player has to make up his mind to be patient."
The Tigers didn't do much with right-hander Alex White, who was making his major-league debut. Cabrera's homer, his seventh of the season, cleared the fence in center to lead off the fourth. After Brennan Boesch grounded out, Raburn homered to right-center, his fourth of the season.
Cabrera doubled to lead off the 13th against Tony Sipp (1-0), but advanced no further. After Boesch fouled out, Raburn hit a drive to the deepest part of the park that Michael Brantley caught in front of the wall in center field. Jhonny Peralta flied out to end the inning.
Cabrera homered and doubled, but walked three times, two of which were intentional.
"You can see the way they're pitching him," Leyland said. "It doesn't matter what the situation is. They're just not giving him anything to hit."
"Miguel is the best hitter in the American League, hands down," Indians manager Manny Acta said. "I'm talking about hitting. I'm not afraid to say I fear him. I've thought about walking him every time up."
Villarreal struck out the side in the 12th, but Brantley singled sharply to open the Cleveland 13th. He went to second on a wild pickoff throw by Villareal. Asdrubal Cabrera put down a sacrifice bunt that was fielded by catcher Alex Avila — third baseman Brandon Inge had also come in on the play, and nobody was covering the bag.
"Inge was coming in because normally with a man on second, they want the third baseman to field the ball," Leyland said. "He can't hang back."
Leyland chose to intentionally walk Shin-Soo Choo and Carlos Santana to load the bases. Orlando Cabrera drove Villarreal's first pitch to deep center. Austin Jackson, playing shallow to cut off the run on a fly ball, had no chance to make the play.
Rick Porcello, making his first start since April 20, gave up two runs on solo homers to Santana and Brantley, in seven innings. He allowed seven hits, struck out seven and walked one. Porcello was skipped in the rotation because of two scheduled off days in a five-day stretch. Leyland wanted to keep the other starters on their regular turn.
"I threw the ball pretty well with the exception, obviously of the two pitches that got hit out of the ballpark," Porcello said.
Porcello waas unhappy with both pitches that left the park.
"I fell behind Santana and left a fastball up," Porcello said. "Knowing he's a good fastball hitter, I have to locate that pitch better. The one to Brantley is a tough one to sawllow. I had him 0-2 and I went with a slider I know I have to bounce that pitch. I didn't get it there. I left it hanging. A lot of guys will hit that one out. It wasn't a quality pitch."
NOTES: Tigers RHP Al Alburquerque struck out six over three perfect innings of relief. ... Jackson struck out three times and has fanned 22 times in his last 16 games. Raburn fanned twice for 27 in his last 17. ... The crowd of 26,433 was Cleveland's largest since an opening-day sellout of 41,721. The walk-up of 8,059 was third largest since Progressive Field opened in 1994.