Tigers Win Back and Forth Game With Twins 9-7

Human InterestDetroit TigersMinnesota TwinsAustin JacksonBrandon IngeMiguel CabreraPhil Coke

Brandon Inge's run-scoring triple in the top of the ninth inning proved to be the difference, as the Tigers outlasted the Minnesota Twins, 9-7, to sweep a brief two-game set at Target Field.

Tied at 7-7, Detroit pushed two across in the top of the ninth to take the lead for good. Matt Capps (1-2), on for his second inning of work, allowed a one-out infield single to Ramon Santiago before Inge hit a fly ball to center that Denard Span was unable to come up with. Austin Jackson followed with a bunt to bring in another.

Jose Valverde came on for the bottom half and walked Jason Kubel leading off. The hard-throwing closer then settled down to retire the next three batters and preserve the win, recording his eighth save of the season.

Victor Martinez hit a solo homer and knocked in three, while Jhonny Peralta added a two-run shot for Detroit, which has won five straight and nine of its last 10. Miguel Cabrera had a two-run double, but was ejected in the sixth inning by home plate umpire Vic Carapazza for arguing a called third strike.

"We did good. We just have to sustain. We just have to keep going," Tigers manager Jim Leyland said. "You're not going to win every night and not going to lose every night. I was really proud of the guys today. They never gave in."

Phil Coke got the starting nod for the Tigers and earned a no decision. The lefty yielded two runs on five hits over 5 2/3 frames. Joaquin Benoit (1-2) picked up the win after allowing one unearned run and three hits in 1 2/3 innings of relief.

Kubel had a three-run homer and drove in four for the Twins, who have dropped five straight.

Starter Scott Baker lasted only 4 1/3 innings, getting touched for five runs on six hits and five walks with six strikeouts, but did not factor in the decision.

"I think that's a good sign. We saw that a lot of that last year when we were trailing at home, finding a way to come back in the ball game," Baker said about his teammates. "We just came up short."

Detroit took the early lead on a two-out RBI single by Martinez in the first, but Michael Cuddyer's run-scoring double tied it in the second.

Kubel lined an RBI single up the middle to put the Twins up 2-1 in the third, before Martinez evened it with a lead-off homer to right-center in the fourth.

The Tigers put up a three-spot in the fifth to go in front again. Scott Sizemore started the inning with a walk and Brennan Boesch singled before Cabrera brought in both with a double to center. Martinez followed with a base hit up the middle to make it a 5-2 game.

Minnesota left the bases loaded in the sixth, but scored four in the seventh. With men on second and third and one out, Luke Hughes hit an RBI double off the right-field wall and Daniel Schlereth came in from the Tigers' bullpen and gave up a three-run shot to Kubel.

Jose Mijares gave up a one-out walk to Boesch in the eighth and Capps was summoned from the bullpen. The closer hung a slider that Peralta crushed into the left-field seats to put the Tigers in front 7-6.

However, pinch-hitter Ben Revere reached with a one-out infield single in the bottom portion and raced home with the tying run on Matt Tolbert's double. Tolbert took third on Boesch's throwing error, but was stranded after the next two batters were retired.

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