They appear to have another favorable matchup against A.J. Griffin, who hasn't been able to keep the ball in the park.
The Tigers go for a fourth consecutive victory in Monday night's series opener against the slumping Oakland Athletics , who visit Comerica Park for the first time since last year's ALDS.
Detroit (77-53) enters this four-game set having won six of eight, hitting .341 with 11 homers in that span. Cabrera and Andy Dirks both hit two-run shots as the Tigers swept the New York Mets with Sunday's 11-3 road win.
Cabrera - whose 42 homers are four behind Baltimore's Chris Davis as he chases a second straight Triple Crown - leads the majors with 128 RBIs and a .360 batting average after going 3 for 4 on Sunday. Ramon Santiago also had three hits, while Victor Martinez , Prince Fielder , Austin Jackson and Omar Infante each added two.
"It's a lot of fun to watch," winning pitcher Rick Porcello said of Cabrera, who has 10 homers and 28 RBIs in his last 19 games. "You've got to remind yourself not to take what he's done for granted, because he's just that special of a player. ... He's the best hitter on the planet, hands down."
Cabrera may be looking forward to facing Griffin (10-9, 3.84 ERA), who has given up a major league-worst 30 home runs. The right-hander offered up two in Wednesday's 5-3 loss to Seattle, yielding four runs, five hits and four walks in six innings.
"Trying to be more careful, not give into guys as much," Griffin, who has issued 15 free passes in his last three starts spanning 16 2-3 innings, told MLB's official website. "That's where the walks are coming from."
Griffin is 0-1 with a 6.52 ERA in two career starts versus Detroit, including playoffs. Fielder has taken him deep twice in five at-bats, and Cabrera is 3 for 5 with a homer and a double.
Griffin will also need to be careful against Jackson, who has gone 14 for 32 (.438) with two homers, seven RBIs and nine runs during a seven-game hitting streak.
The Tigers, who eliminated the A's in five games last postseason, took two of three in Oakland from April 12-14 in the only meeting since.
Clinging to the second AL wild-card spot, the A's (72-57) have dropped 14 of 23 while hitting .200 with runners in scoring position. Oakland went 1 for 7 in such situations in Sunday's 10-3 loss at Baltimore, its fourth defeat in five games.
"They're a good team, and we're a good team as well, and we just didn't play like we're capable of," losing pitcher Sonny Gray said.
Oakland could have a hard time bouncing back against Tigers starter Anibal Sanchez (11-7, 2.45), who has compiled a 1.51 ERA during a season-high four-game winning streak. The right-hander allowed one run and struck out eight in 6 2-3 innings but didn't factor in the decision of Wednesday's 7-1 victory over Minnesota.
Sanchez has been especially good at home, where he has posted an AL-best .198 opponent batting average and the league's second-lowest ERA (1.92).
Sanchez lost his first two matchups against the A's, including playoffs, before allowing one run and three hits in seven innings in a 10-1 road victory April 14. Josh Reddick is 0 for 9 versus Sanchez, and Chris Young , Jed Lowrie and Brandon Moss are a combined 3 for 32.
Reddick exited Sunday's loss after aggravating his troublesome right wrist, leaving his status for Monday uncertain. The right fielder is mired in a 3-for-23 slump.
|August 25, 2013||Josh Reddick||Day-to-Day||Right wrist|
|August 21, 2013||Derek Norris||15-Day DL||Fractured left big toe|
|August 14, 2013||Bartolo Colon||15-Day DL||Left groin strain|
|August 11, 2013||Coco Crisp||Day-to-Day||Left wrist|
|July 25, 2013||John Jaso||15-Day DL||Concussion|
|July 20, 2013||Yoenis Cespedes||Day-to-Day||Sore left wrist|
|August 24, 2013||Jose Iglesias||Day-to-Day||Sore left elbow|
|August 17, 2013||Omar Infante||Day-to-Day||Left game - lower back stiffness|
|August 11, 2013||Alex Avila||7-Day DL||Concussion|
|July 31, 2013||Miguel Cabrera||Day-to-Day||Strained lower abdomen|
|July 31, 2013||Luis Marte||15-Day DL||Recovery from right shoulder surgery|
|July 25, 2013||Torii Hunter||Day-to-Day||Left game - sore left Achilles|
DETROIT (AP) -- Coco Crisp is on such a roll that he was even a little better than Miguel Cabrera on Monday night.
Crisp and Daric Barton each drove in two runs, leading the Oakland Athletics to an 8-6 victory over the Detroit Tigers .
Cabrera hit his 43rd homer, bolstering his pursuit of another Triple Crown, but Barton had a tiebreaking RBI single in Oakland's two-run sixth inning. Crisp went 3 for 6 with a solo homer and is batting .500 (9 for 18) in his last four games.
The A's scored at least one run against each of Detroit's three relievers after Anibal Sanchez was forced out after throwing 112 pitches in five innings.
"We did a good job of being patient," Crisp said. "I think we got his pitch count pretty good."
A.J. Griffin (11-9) earned his first win since July 29 despite allowing four runs and seven hits in five-plus innings. The right-hander was 0-2 with a 3.47 ERA in his previous four starts.
"I was just trying to battle and keep the ball down good," Griffin said. "It's good to win, a good battle. It felt like a playoff atmosphere."
Grant Balfour allowed an unearned run in the ninth but held on for his 33rd save.
Omar Infante and Victor Martinez also homered for the AL Central-leading Tigers, who had won three in a row. Martinez went 4 for 5 and Torii Hunter had two hits.
"We just didn't pitch good. I don't know what else to tell you," manager Jim Leyland said. "They were swinging the bats good, and we didn't pitch good. Our pitchers have been terrific, but tonight they got beat. No big deal."
Cabrera went deep in the fifth, sending a 3-1 slider from Griffin over the wall in right for a two-run shot that tied it at 4. He leads the AL with a .359 batting average and 130 RBIs, but he trails Baltimore slugger Chris Davis for the home run lead by three.
"Trying to go off the plate, trying to make him chase something," Griffin said. "It was up. If it would have been down, it would have been a better pitch."
Oakland responded in the sixth, jumping all over Jose Alvarez (1-4). Barton, who was called up from Triple-A Sacramento earlier in the day, had the last of three consecutive singles to open the inning, driving in Nate Freiman . Crisp added an RBI single.
Alberto Callaspo added a run-scoring single against Al Alburquerque in the seventh and Jed Lowrie 's RBI double in the eighth made it 8-4.
"They got some hits off tough pitches, but Anibal has been great for us, and this was just one of those days," Martinez said. "Obviously, no one wants to give up hits and no one wants to leave runners on base, but we're playing against a big league team and they are playing just as hard as we are."
Sanchez allowed four runs and five hits in five innings. He struck out six and walked three.
NOTES: Crisp also made a diving catch in right-center to rob pinch hitter Tuiasosopo of extra bases in the eighth. ... Oakland placed RF Josh Reddick on the 15-day disabled list with a sprained right wrist. Reddick sprained the wrist on Sunday. Barton took Reddick's place on the roster. Oakland also designated RHP Pat Neshek for assignment. Right-hander Evan Scribner was recalled from Sacramento to take Neshek's roster spot. ... Detroit SS Jose Iglesias returned after missing two games because of soreness above his left elbow. ... The pitching matchup for the second game of the series on Tuesday night is Tigers ace Justin Verlander (12-9, 3.68 ERA) against LHP Tommy Milone (9-9, 4.30 ERA).