Cabrera, Guillen lead Tigers past A'sJul 20, 2011 - 4:41 AM
Tigers All-Star Miguel Cabrera came into the opener of this two-game series hitting .333 with 10 homers and 27 runs batted in over 28 games against the Athletics since joining Detroit in 2008. But Moscoso had already retired the slugger twice, once on strikes, before a showdown in the fifth inning with Oakland up by a run.
Having just allowed a sacrifice fly to Magglio Ordonez that kept Brennan Boesch on second, the Oakland starter opted to go after Cabrera with two outs and paid the price.
Cabrera belted a 2-2 offering over the left-field wall for his 20th homer of the season and the Tigers never trailed again on the way to an 8-3 victory and a tie for first place in the American League Central.
"Two-out hits are huge," said A's outfielder David DeJesus. "The Cabrera one, he just battled and then got a pitch over the plate and drove it. I've seen him do that many a times here, so we just have to come back [Wednesday] and we'll be okay."
Moscoso (3-5) was recalled from Triple-A Sacramento prior to the game -- he was sent there to stay fresh during the All-Star break -- and made his first major league start since July 6. He made the transition look easy at first, throwing 14 of his initial 16 pitches for strikes, getting out of a jam in the second inning unscathed and needing just six pitches to retire the side in order in the third.
Detroit got to the right-hander in the fourth inning thanks to some defensive mishaps in the field. Victor Martinez hit a one-out single to center two batters before Carlos Guillen smacked a liner down the first-base line that Conor Jackson was unable to corral for an error. The throw home on the play left catcher Kurt Suzuki with plenty of time to block the plate, but he instead attempted a diving tag that Martinez danced around before scoring the game's first run.
Things then fell apart for Moscoso in the fifth inning. Following Cabrera's back-breaking homer with two outs, Martinez doubled to left and came around to score on Jhonny Peralta's single.
Moscoso's night then ended when Guillen took his 86th pitch of the night to right-center field for his first homer since August 14.
The 27-year-old Moscoso threw 32 pitches in the fifth and ended up being charged with seven runs -- six earned -- over 4 2/3 innings to lift his earned run average up nearly a point from 2.16 to 2.96. He had only given up one earned run over his previous four starts.
"I just started missing my spots and you can't miss your spots in this game," Moscoso said. "I missed three pitches up and they made some damage on them."
Craig Breslow got Alex Avila to line out to end the frame, but Detroit tacked on a run in the sixth inning when Boesch's double plated Austin Jackson.
Jackson, who was making his first start since July 7 because of a left wrist injury, scored twice and two of Boesch's three hits on the night were doubles. Boesch is hitting .361 over his last 38 games with 21 RBI.
"We've got a pretty dangerous lineup and we just need to get a little momentum going and we're tough to beat," Boesch said.
Detroit has now split its first four games since the All-Star break and pulled into a tie with Cleveland for first place in the division after the Indians lost to Minnesota on Tuesday.
The defeat for the Athletics was their sixth in a row on the road and the 24th in their past 29 games away from Oakland.
Oakland, which had taken three of four from the Angels prior to this series, held a 3-1 lead in the fifth inning. Suzuki led off the frame with a double and Tigers starter Rick Porcello (9-6) retired the next two batters before Ryan Sweeney's broken-bat single to right field plated Suzuki to even the game.
Coco Crisp followed with a double to right field that moved Sweeney to third and both runners came home when Hideki Matsui took a Porcello changeup to right for a base hit, but Oakland managed a mere four hits after the fifth inning.
Matsui ended with two hits and Cliff Pennington went 3-for-4 at the plate for Oakland, which came into the game a season-high 13 games out of first place for its largest deficit since finishing the 2009 season 22 games off the pace.
Oakland's three-run fifth came after it failed to plate a run in the fourth despite loading the bases with nobody out.
Crisp and Matsui hit back-to-back singles before Porcello hit Scott Sizemore with a pitch in the jaw during a bunt attempt.
Sizemore, who was traded from the Tigers to the Athletics in late May, stayed down on one knee at home plate and was attended to before exiting the field under his own power. He was replaced on the bases by Eric Sogard -- with Tigers manager Jim Leyland arguing to no avail that Sizemore had attempted to bunt the ball -- but Porcello kept the A's off the board by getting DeJesus to ground into a force out at home before Jackson ended the inning by hitting into a double play.
X-rays on Sizemore were negative and he is day-to-day.
Oakland interim manager Bob Melvin thought the Tigers getting out of that jam perhaps swung the momentum.
"They feel like they dodged one and they did at that point," said Melvin. "So, we could have put a couple on there, and then the game went where it went, it would have been a different story."
"I think that was a big inning, obviously, keeping us in the game and we were able to pull it out," the Tigers right-hander said.
Porcello snapped a three-decision losing streak to the A's by limiting the damage to three runs on eight hits over six innings while striking out three without a walk to win his third straight start overall.
To make room for Moscoso, the Athletics designated left-handed reliever Jerry Blevins for assignment. Blevins will remain on the 40-man roster...The A's are last in the American League with 52 homers and have yet to go deep in five games versus the Tigers this year. The two clubs split a four-game set in Oakland from April 14-17...Oakland has gone 20-35 since it was tied for first place in the AL West on May 17...Cabrera's homer was the 600th extra-base hit of his career...Guillen suffered a left knee injury two days after his August homer that held him out of action until this past Saturday...Oakland outfielder Josh Willingham was held out of the lineup to rest his strained left Achilles' tendon...The Tigers agreed to terms on Tuesday with 2011 sixth- round draft choice Tyler Collins, an outfielder out of Howard College in Texas. He is the 26th selection from this year's draft to agree to terms with Detroit.
- OAKLAND: 3
Jul 19 10:18 PM
- Fautino De Los Santos enters the game for the Athletics with a runner on second with one out.
Athletics 3, Tigers 8 Bot 6, 1 OutJul 19 9:25 PM
- Craig Breslow enters the game for the Athletics with none on and two out.
Athletics 3, Tigers 7 Bot 5, 2 OutsJul 19 9:06 PM
- Miguel Cabrera two-out, two-run Home Run (20) to left scored Brennan Boesch. Victor Martinez due up.
Athletics 3, Tigers 4 Bot 5, 2 OutsJul 19 8:56 PM
- Magglio Ordonez sacrifice fly out to center scored Austin Jackson. Runner on second with two outs and Miguel Cabrera due up.
Athletics 3, Tigers 2 Bot 5, 2 OutsJul 19 8:51 PM
- Hideki Matsui singled to right, advanced to second on the throw, scored Ryan Sweeney and Coco Crisp. Runner on second with two outs and Eric Sogard due up.
Athletics 3, Tigers 1 Top 5, 2 OutsJul 19 8:39 PM
- Coco Crisp doubled to right. On the play, Ryan Sweeney advances to third. Runners on second and third with two outs and Hideki Matsui due up.
Athletics 1, Tigers 1 Top 5, 2 OutsJul 19 8:36 PM
- Kurt Suzuki doubled to left. Runner on second with none out and Cliff Pennington due up.
Athletics 0, Tigers 1 Top 5, 0 OutsJul 19 8:27 PM
- OAKLAND: 0
Top 1, 0 Outs
Jul 19 7:07 PM
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