knew it was his last batter, and it was a dangerous one.
So the Tigers right-hander reached back for a pair of 100 mph fastballs that blew by
and essentially clinched Detroit's 2-0 victory over the
Boston Red Sox
''That's a horse,'' Tigers manager Jim Leyland said, after the AL Central-leading Tigers avoided a four-game sweep and beat
for the first time in seven tries this season. ''That's a brilliant performance. The eighth inning was textbook, No. 1-type
pitching. To do what he did in that inning, at that point in the ballgame, there's not many guys who can do that.''
Bay had homered in each of the first three games in the series, and he had three hits on Wednesday night to help Boston win
its third straight. When he came up with two out in the eighth and a runner on second, Verlander knew it would be a bad time
to make a mistake.
''That was a big at-bat,'' Verlander said. ''I was just thinking, 'I'm not going to give up a game-tying home run in the eighth,
when our guys have battled so hard.'''
Verlander (13-6) allowed four hits in eight innings, striking out eight and walking one while retiring 16 of the last 19 batters
homered for Detroit, and
pitched the ninth for his 24th save.
Verlander twice hit No. 9 hitter
with a pitch, but there was none of the animosity that marred Tuesday night's game and earned
and Tigers pitcher
a pair of five-game suspensions.
Both players dropped the suspension on Wednesday night.
(1-3) allowed five hits in seven innings, walking three and striking out three while giving up Raburn's homer to go with an
unearned run in the fourth.
''As good as Verlander was - and I'm probably exaggerating - I thought Clay was almost one pitch worse,''
said. ''We just ran up against one of the better performances you'll see.''
Buchholz lost his third straight decision, even though he has only allowed three earned runs over 13 innings in his last two
starts. He lost to
New York Yankees
left-hander CC Sabathia on Saturday.
''I'm picking the wrong pitchers to throw against,'' Buchholz said. ''The last two guys have been as good as I've seen, so
you can't read too deep into it. It's proven that it's working, but it's hard to win games when you've got guys throwing like
had two hits for Boston, and he also stole a base for the second time in his career and the first time since 2003.
Verlander got all the offense he needed in the fourth.
hit a sinking liner to right field that went off
's shoe and bounced away. It was originally scored a double, then changed to a single with an error. Cabrera took third on
a groundout and scored on Raburn's infield single.
Raburn made it 2-0 with a home run over the Green Monster in left field. It was his seventh homer of the year.
put runners on second and third in the first inning before Verlander struck out
, each on a 99 mph fastball.
doubled to lead off the eighth, but he remained there while Reddick struck out, Martinez popped out foul to the third baseman
and Bay whiffed on a 100 mph fastball - Verlander's 123rd and final pitch of the day.
NOTES: Verlander is 6-2 in 10 afternoon starts this season. ... Verlander had allowed 13 earned runs in his previous three
starts. ... It was Verlander's 15th game with eight or more strikeouts. ... The Tigers said after the game they would option
to Triple-A and call up RHP