The Detroit Tigers blasted out of the gate.
Austin Jackson led off the game with a double to right field. Then, Torii Hunter was plunked, setting up Miguel Cabrera with runners on first and second. Big Cat sent a line drive up the middle. Jackson scored and Hunter moved to third. It was classic contact from Cabrera, a great sign.
Next, Prince Fielder grounded into a double play, but Hunter scored for a 2-0 lead. Victor Martinez doubled with two outs, hitting one over the shortstop’s head and all the way to the wall. Alex Avila singled Martinez home on a ball that wasn’t fielded very well by Oakland.
The Tigers held to that 3-0 lead for most of the game. Victor was thrown out at home on a single by Omar Infante and the Tigers scattered ten hits.
Max Scherzer kept the A’s to just three hits. Unfortunately, one would leave the yard and allow two runs to score. Scherzer left the game with a 3-2 lead and seven innings pitched. He threw 118 pitches, struck out 11 and walked two.
Drew Smyly got two outs in the 8th inning before Joaquin Benoit relieved the lefty. Benoit got a pop-up to Fielder to end the 8th before a raucous crowd.
Benny struck out the side in the 9th with the crowd getting louder each pitch.
The Tigers are up 1-0 in a five game series with Justin Verlander pitching tomorrow.
NOTES: The 16 strikeouts by the A’s were a franchise high.