Tigers send Red Sox to 5th straight loss, 8-6
DETROIT (AP) — One swing, two milestones.
All part of a memorable night for Detroit rookie Eugenio Suarez.
Suarez homered for his first hit in the majors, and the Detroit Tigers beat Boston 8-6 Saturday night, sending the Red Sox to their fifth straight loss. Miguel Cabrera had three hits for the Tigers, who have won all five games against the Red Sox this season after losing to them in the AL championship series last year.
Suarez’s solo shot in the fourth came in the shortstop’s third at-bat since he was called up from the minors earlier in the week.
“I hit that ball hard,” Suarez said. “I feel very happy for that hit, for that home run. I’ll never forget that first hit, my first start in the big leagues.”
Suarez became the first Detroit player to accomplish his first career homer and first career hit at the same time since Wilkin Ramirez on May 20, 2009. Ramirez hasn’t homered in the majors since.
Suarez made his debut as a substitute Wednesday and hurt his knee sliding into second, but he was in the starting lineup Saturday. Nick Castellanos also homered for the Tigers, and Dustin Pedroia went deep for Boston.
Detroit closer Joe Nathan allowed two runs in the ninth in a non-save situation, but retired Stephen Drew on a flyout with two on to end it.
Nathan has an ERA of 7.04 this year.
“We just wanted to get him an inning. We’re going to need Joe Nathan,” Detroit manager Brad Ausmus said. “We wanted to get him out there and let him throw some pitches, and kind of work through this. He threw more pitches than we wanted, obviously, but was able to get through it.”
Max Scherzer (7-2) allowed four runs and 11 hits in 6 2-3 innings for the Tigers. He struck out nine and walked one.
Jon Lester (6-7) allowed five runs and 12 hits in 4 1-3 innings.
Castellanos and Austin Jackson had three hits for the AL Central-leading Tigers, who had lost five straight before taking the first two games of this series. They scored two runs in the first off Lester on an RBI double by Victor Martinez and a run-scoring single by Torii Hunter. Rajai Davis added an RBI single in the second.
Castellanos hit a solo homer in the third. After Pedroia’s solo homer in the fourth, Suarez led off the bottom half with a drive that carried past the fence in left for a 5-1 Detroit lead.
Lester entered the day with 95 strikeouts, the third-most in the American League, but he didn’t fan a single Detroit hitter.
“I didn’t feel good from the first toss in the bullpen to the last pitch I threw in the game. Against that offense, that means a long night,” Lester said. “I flat-out wasted this game and the performance by our offense.”
The Red Sox chipped away against Scherzer. Jackie Bradley Jr. hit an RBI single in the fifth, and Drew added one in the sixth.
In the bottom half, Ian Kinsler hit an RBI triple and scored on a single by Cabrera.
David Ortiz chased Scherzer with an RBI double in the seventh to make it 7-4, but Al Alburquerque came on and got Grady Sizemore to ground out with runners on second and third for the third out.
Boston is now in the middle of another long streak. The Red Sox lost 10 in a row, then won seven straight before their current skid.
Boston’s Xander Bogaerts stole third in bizarre fashion in the ninth when Castellanos left the base unattended to shift from his normal spot at third to the right side of the infield with Ortiz batting. Bogaerts took off for third, and Nathan ran over from the mound and tried to tag him but couldn’t get to third in time.
NOTES: Boston manager John Farrell said RHP Clay Buchholz (left knee) had his simulated game pushed back to Sunday. It was initially scheduled for Saturday in Detroit. ... Castellanos became the first Tigers rookie to have three straight three-hit games since Rick Peters in 1980. ... Martinez hit into a rare 5-6-3 double play in the sixth, with the Boston defense shifted. ... Farrell won a challenge in the sixth after Pedroia was initially called out at first. Pedroia ended up with an infield single after the replay review, and he would finish with three hits. Daniel Nava also had three hits for the Red Sox. ... Detroit will try for a regular-season sweep of the Red Sox on Sunday when RHP Anibal Sanchez (2-2) faces Boston RHP John Lackey (6-4).