American League Game Summary - Tampa Bay at Detroit|
(Wednesday, April 11th)
Final Score: Tampa Bay 4, Detroit 2
Detroit, MI (Sports Network) - A four-run rally in the ninth inning, which
began against the nearly unhittable Justin Verlander and culminated with Ben
Zobrist's go-ahead two-run single, gave the Rays a 4-2 win over the Tigers on
Verlander (0-1) held a 2-0 lead and had allowed just one hit entering the
ninth, but singles by Jeff Keppinger and Desmond Jennings put runners at the
corners with one down. Keppinger scored on a wild pitch and Evan Longoria tied
it with an RBI single, driving the 2011 American League MVP and CY Young Award
winner from the game.
The bases were loaded two batters later when Zobrist put Tampa Bay on top with
a two-run single up the middle off of Jose Valverde.
Fernando Rodney retired Miguel Cabrera, Prince Fielder and Jhonny Peralta in
order to earn his third save of the season. James Shields (1-0) got the win
after allowing two runs on six hits over eight innings and the Rays, who swept
the Yankees to begin the season, rebounded from Tuesday's 5-2 loss in the
opener of this three-game series.
Verlander suffered his first loss in 15 starts dating back to July 15 of last
year against the White Sox. He was charged with all four runs on four hits
over 8 1/3 innings.
"Verlander was on top of his entire game today," said Rays manager Joe Maddon.
"It was a great comeback win against a very good opponent."
Cabrera knocked in a run in the first for the Tigers, who were attempting
to start the season with five straight wins for the first time since 2006.
Zobrist broke up Verlander's no-hitter with a one-out single in the fifth,
advanced to second on a balk and to third on a fly out, but Jose Lobaton
grounded out to end the threat.
Andy Dirks led off the home fifth with a double, moved to third on a groundout
and made it 2-0 on a Shields balk.
Verlander retired the next nine batters in order before Keppinger's leadoff
single in the ninth.
"I felt like I pitched exceptionally well for the first eight innings," said
Verlander. "I have to learn from the ninth."
Shields improved to 5-0 in eight career starts versus the Tigers...The Tigers
had won eight of their previous nine games against the Rays...Prior to the
game, Rays pitcher Jeremy Hellickson was hit in the head by a ball during
batting practice. He was alert and responsive and was taken to a nearby
hospital for observation...Detroit announced Wednesday that designated hitter
Victor Martinez does not need a second surgery to reconstruct the anterior
cruciate ligament in his left knee. Martinez, who suffered a torn ACL during
his offseason conditioning, had microfracture surgery in January.
04/11 18:30:22 ET