The Indians waited more than three weeks to gain a little ground on the Royals. They gave it right back in a few hours.
Saturday was a good day for Tigers fans. Alex Avila’s two-run home run in the eighth inning gave Detroit a 5-4 win over Cleveland.
J.D. Martinez hit a solo homer in the fourth and Detroit starter Justin Verlander left with two runners on and two outs in the sixth.
Avila sent a full-count pitch from reliever Bryan Shaw into the right-field stands for his 11th home run and helped the Tigers retain first place in the AL Central.
The Tigers are neck and neck with Kansas City atop the AL Central, and if they win the division they can thank Martinez, who has 21 home runs.
Victor Martinez’s three-run homer highlighted a seven-run 11th inning that lifted the Detroit Tigers to an 11-4 win over the Cleveland Indians on Thursday night.
The Tigers (76-63), who entered play a half-game behind Kansas City in the AL Central, won the first two games of the crucial series against their division rivals.
Martinez’s one-out shot over the center-field wall bailed out the Tigers, who had been unable to get a clutch hit for eight innings.
Another difficult day on the trade front ended with a disappointing loss for the Cleveland Indians.
Justin Masterson began the season as the Indians’ ace. He’ll end it with a different team in a different league.