The Tigers won and forced the ALCS to return to Texas. We arrived at the game later than we usually do since it was a 4:19 start that really started at 4:19.
Justin Verlander went 7 1/3 innings and threw 133 pitches on a day when the bullpen consisted of Phil Coke. (Well, Brad Penny, Daniel Schlereth and Ryan Perry were technically available.) He did give up a 2-run home run to Cruz just before he was pulled so having him go in the 8th may have been a mistake. Of course maybe Cruz would take anyone deep the way his series has gone. Coke got the last 5 outs. His ninth inning was what you would expect from a Detroit closer. But he despite three base runners and one run he did finish the game.
The most fun part was the Tigers 6th. It started with a Raburn single. then Cabrera doubled on a ball that bounced off third base and went over Beltre’s head. Martinez tripled when Cruz dove for a ball and missed. I certainly would not have predicted a Martinez triple before the game. Young completed the natural cycle by hitting his fifth home run of the playoffs tying a Tigers record.
Another fun part of the game was when an obviously hurting Avila hit his first post-season home run.
I have such optimism that I finally printed the print-at-home tickets I bought for next Saturday. Don’t make me waste that 35 cent investment in ink and paper, Tigers.