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Interleague Preview from The Sports Network



Wednesday, April 9th (All times Eastern)

Detroit Tigers (4-2) at Los Angeles Dodgers (6-3), 10:10 p.m.

Probable Starting Pitchers: Detroit - Anibal Sanchez (0-0, 4.50) Los Angeles - Josh Beckett (0-0,0.00)

(SportsNetwork.com) - Josh Beckett is expected to make his season debut on Wednesday when the Los Angeles Dodgers and Detroit Tigers conclude their two- game interleague series.

Beckett went 0-5 with a 5.19 ERA in eight starts last year with the Dodgers before his season ended May 13. He later had a rib removed to alleviate a nerve problem and finger numbness.

Beckett was slowed by both a thumb and ankle injury this spring, but appears to be ready to go on Wednesday.

The first game of the series ended in dramatic fashion on Tuesday, as Carl Crawford's RBI double in the 10th inning carried the Dodgers to a 3-2 decision. The loss was the second in a row for the Tigers, who had won their first four games under first year manager Brad Ausmus.

Los Angeles had a 2-1 lead in the ninth inning before Victor Martinez had an RBI single to tie the score and force extra innings.

Detroit's Torii Hunter had a three-game hitting streak stopped in the loss. The veteran outfielder's status for the second half of the series is questionable.

"My inclination is to give him (Wednesday) off because of the off-day, unless he came in and said that he felt great, that there's no pain at all," Ausmus said.

If Hunter can't play, either rookie Tyler Collins or veteran utility man Don Kelly will get the start in right.

Austin Jackson hit his first home run of the campaign on Tuesday for Detroit and now owns a team-leading average .333. Detroit has hit at least one home run in every game this season.

Slugger Miguel Cabrera will try to bounce back after going 0- for-4 with a strikeout. Cabrera is 2-for-11 with four strikeouts in his last four games at Dodger Stadium.

Detroit will send Anibal Sanchez to the hill as it tries to avoid being swept by the reigning NL runner-up. Sanchez pitched only four innings versus Baltimore last week in his season debut. The 10-year veteran allowed only two hits and two earned runs to the Orioles, but was pulled early as a precautionary measure.

"Considering he had the shoulder issue in Spring Training, his pitch count didn't get over 70 much, we just felt like we didn't want to push him today. I'm sure he would have wanted to go back out, but it was just a situation we were thinking more long-term."

Sanchez and Beckett were once traded for each other between the Red Sox and Marlins nine years ago. This will be the first time in history these two pitchers square off.

The Dodgers may be without star outfielder Yasiel Puig. Manager Don Mattingly said the outfielder "is still kind of day to day" with a thumb injury and might be available in some capacity if he can't start.

Los Angeles still had plenty of offense without Puig on Tuesday as five different players recorded a double and lead- off man Dee Gordon belted his first home run of the season. Gordon is batting a team-best .357. Crawford went 3-of-5 in Tuesday's win, which came despite an 0- for-9 performance with runners in scoring position.

Kenley Jansen's blown save in the series opener was his first of the campaign.

04/09 10:27:45 ET