DETROIT (AP) – Javier Baez broke a pitch over the fence and made a clever play in the field.
When the Detroit Tigers signed a two-time All-Star shortstop last winter in a $140 million, six-year contact, they were banking on him, like, a lot of games.
Baez hit a tiebreaking two-run homer in the eighth inning and made a diving stop and threw for a knee-out in the second, giving Detroit a 3-1 win over the Boston Red Sox on Monday night.
“JV played a big time at shortstop and we needed a hit,” said Miguel Cabrera, who called for a sacrificial fly and two hit pulls within nine of the 3,000th of his career. . “It was a big game for us after two losses to the White Sox.”
Baez sent a 396-foot shot to the left to Ryan Brasier, who scored an Austin Meadows goal, bringing home two players who are part of a new-look squad hoping to contest.
Michael Fulmer (1-0) took eighth and Gregory Soto closed the game for Detroit’s first save of the season.
Austin Davis (0-1) lost the innings after conceding one run and two hits.
Boston led by several runs in each of their first three games against the New York Yankees, but did not win until Sunday when Bobby Dalbeck hit a tiebreaking singles homer in the sixth inning.
The Tigers were two-plus runs behind in all three games against the Chicago White Sox, and rallied in the opener in the ninth on only a Baez RBI single, which Matthews scored in his Detroit debut.
“If you’re looking for panic, you should look elsewhere,” said manager AJ Hinch.
The Tigers flipped the script against the Red Sox to take a 1–0 lead in the first innings at the sacrifice of Cabrera, but did not generate much offense until late in the game.
Detroit’s Matt Manning was perfect through four innings, before JD Martinez took a fifth-place lead with a single homer to pull Boston into a 1-all tie.
Manning, ranked ninth overall in 2016, only dropped Martinez’s single homer in six innings.
“He had some good stuff on him and kept us off balance and giving us trouble,” Martinez said.
Alex Lang and Fulmer each provided scoreless relief in an innings. Soto also allowed only one hit.
In his Red Sox debut, Michael Wacha got off to a shaky start before closing out Detroit. Coven loaded first base with an out on Meadows single and two walk, but came out of the jam with only one run on Cabrera’s sacrificial fly.
‘That first innings was disappointing for me,’ Vacha said. “Giving a couple free passes in there took a run, but I felt like I settled on pretty well after that.”
Cabrera doubled in sixth, giving him 1,117 extra-base hits, bringing him to 19th place alongside Hall of Famers Ted Williams and Jimmy Foxx. Hall of Famer George Brett (1,119) and Manny Ramirez (1,122) are the next two on the all-time extra-base hit list.
Later in the game, Cabrera singled out for the 2,990th hit of his career.
Baez’s home run came on a pitch 3.85 feet above the ground, the second-highest pitch ever for a home run. He made a pitch 3.91 feet above the ground in 2018 for the Cubs against the Mets.
The Red Sox average just three runs in a game.
“I don’t want to make excuses, but we are still three weeks behind a normal buildup,” Martinez said.
The Red Sox: Trevor Story missed its second straight game with flu-like symptoms. Manager Alex Cora reiterated that the team’s new $140 million 2B does not contain COVID-19, the story added in Detroit. “He feels weak,” Cora said. “Hopefully he can come here (Tuesday), take her around. I don’t know whether he will play (Tuesday) or not. We are trying to shoot for the last day of the series.
Tigers: LHP Andrew Chaffin (groin strain) bowled a bullpen on Monday. “It’s a big week for Chaffin,” Hinch said. … Derek Hill’s, on 10-day IL with a strained right hamstring, has begun a running schedule.
42-year-old LHP Rich Hill is set to make the first start of his third stint with the Red Sox in the second game of the three-match series on Tuesday afternoon. Detroit plans to compete with LHP Tyler Alexander in his first outing of the season.
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