HOWIE RUMBERG, AP Sports Writer
NEW YORK (AP) — Shane Greene capped a series of fine starting pitching, working into the ninth inning and then watching closer David Robertson get pinch-hitter Miguel Cabrera to ground into a double play as the New York Yankees edged the Detroit Tigers 1-0 on Thursday.
Robertson relieved after Ian Kinsler led off the ninth with a single, and he walked Victor Martinez. Robertson came back to induce Cabrera to bounce into a double play and got Don Kelly to softly line out to shortstop with a runner on third for his 31st save and New York’s fifth win in six games.
Stephen Drew’s RBI ground-rule double was the only extra-base hit in a game dominated by Greene and fellow 25-year-old starter Rick Porcello.
The Yankees took two of three in games started by the Tigers’ Cy Young Award winners with spectacular efforts from their rotation. New York’s rookie followed up by pitching the best game of them all against the AL Central leaders.
Greene (3-1) gave up five hits, walked three and struck out five while pitching into the ninth inning for the first time in his career.
Greene didn’t permit a runner past second until Ezequiel Carrera advanced to third on Kinsler’s single in the sixth. The right-hander got out of it with his second double play.
Overall, Yankees starters yielded three earned runs in 27 1-3 innings to the Tigers’ six runs in 29 2-3 innings. Max Scherzer, David Price and Justin Verlander — the last three AL Cy Young Award winners — started the previous three games.
Porcello (13-6) gave up nine hits in seven innings and struck out five. The Yankees loaded the bases in the seventh but the New Jersey-born Porcello got Martin Prado to ground his 110th pitch to shortstop Andrew Romine.
The Yankees gave Greene all the support he needed in the fourth. Carlos Beltran and Chase Headley singled before two-out Drew’s drive bounced just inside the line in left field and hopped into the stands.
Tigers: Right fielder Torii Hunter’s left hand was still swollen and he was unable to play for a second straight game. He was hit by a pitch Tuesday night. … Cabrera was not in the starting lineup for the second time this season. He was 1 for 10 in the four-game series.
Yankees: First baseman Mark Teixeira didn’t play, a day after getting stitches in his left pinkie after he was spiked while sliding home Wednesday night. Manager Joe Girardi said Teixeira is day to day. … Ace Masahiro Tanaka played catch again. “He’s got to get built up to 120 feet,” Girardi said of the step needed for Tanaka to throw a bullpen. “I think he was 60-90 today.”
Tigers: Anibal Sanchez (8-5) will start when Detroit opens a three-game series at Toronto on Friday. The Blue Jays swept a three-game series at Detroit in June.
Yankees: Host Cleveland for three games starting Friday. Girardi still hasn’t announced a starter but he insisted injured right-hander Michael Pineda will not be it. Pineda is scheduled to make a rehab start for Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
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