GDT11: 4/15/14 - DET (6-4) VS CLE (6-7) - 7:08 p.m. ETTigers: RHP Anibal Sanchez (0-0, 3.00 ERA)
--- Detroit Tigers VS Cleveland IndiansTuesday, April 15, 2014
Comerica Park, Detroit, MI
Game Time - 7:08 p.m. EDT
After a rain delay last weekend cost Sanchez a chance at a victory, a blown save from Joe Nathan cost him another on Wednesday at Dodger Stadium. He's 4-1 with a 2.20 ERA for his career against Cleveland, including 2-0 last year.Indians: RHP Zach McAllister (1-0, 2.31 ERA)
McAllister has been the Tribe's most dependable starter so far, having allowed just three earned runs on 11 hits with 11 strikeouts in 11 2/3 innings. He is 0-2 with a 4.85 in six career starts against the Tigers.
______________________________________Tribe starts consistent McAllister vs. TigersIndians righty on strong five-start streak; Anibal gets the call for DetroitBy Matt Slovin / MLB.com | 4/13/2014 8:15 PM ET
As the Tigers and Indians begin their regular-season series Tuesday in Detroit, Cleveland will rely on its most consistent starting pitcher, right-hander Zach McAllister.
McAllister has held his opponent to three runs or fewer in each of his last five starts, a streak that dates back to Sept. 15. Most recently, he pitched 7 2/3 innings of shutout ball in his only decision of the season, a 2-0 victory over San Diego.
Detroit's Anibal Sanchez (0-0, 3.00 ERA) will try to silence the Indians' bats, which have come to life lately, scoring 21 runs in the final three games of the series with the White Sox. But Cleveland took just one game in Chicago as John Axford blew a save Sunday, surrendering a walk-off home run to Alexei Ramirez.
During the Tigers' recent West Coast swing, Sanchez pitched against the Dodgers and lasted five innings in a no-decision. He surrendered three runs on six hits, but only one of the runs was earned.
If the Indians are going to keep pace with Detroit in the American League Central, they will need to use these divisional games as a springboard.
"I don't think they're do-or-die games, but certainly division games have an added importance," Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said Sunday. "I even think the opening series, besides the fact that it was Opening Day, playing Kansas City [was important]. Within the division, whether it's April or it's September, and I realize in September the pressure cooker could be a little bit hotter, but I think division games are always important."
Now that Interleague Play is temporarily behind the Tigers, who went 2-3 against the Dodgers and Padres, slugger Miguel Cabrera will transition back to the three-hole.
Second baseman Ian Kinsler should be at the top of the order, followed by right fielder Torii Hunter. Ausmus will likely place left fielder Rajai Davis at the bottom of the order as something of an additional leadoff hitter.
"I think he takes his at-bats pretty much the same regardless of where he's hitting," Ausmus said of Davis. "I know during the regular season he's hit ninth and first. But he seems to have the same approach regardless, which is good. That's what he should do. Even when he's hitting ninth, we're kind of looking at him as a second leadoff hitter."Indians: Chisenhall back from paternity leave
Third baseman Lonnie Chisenhall returned from paternity leave on Sunday after three days away to attend to the birth of his second son, Cannon, on Thursday.
The Indians sent down infielder Justin Sellers to make room for Chisenhall.
"Everything went good at home. We talked to Sellers last night once we knew Lonnie was going to be here, and he shows up with a smile and I think he feels good about things," Indians manager Terry Francona said.Tigers: V-Mart an option at catcher during AL play
The Tigers bid farewell to their early bout of Interleague Play by putting Victor Martinez behind the plate for the second time this week on Sunday. However, the return of the designated-hitter slot might not mean the end of Martinez's catching days.
"It definitely would be an option," Ausmus said, "probably a little bit more [than it was before]."
It would not be a regular option. As a 35-year-old with a history of knee problems on a team with a vested interest in keeping his bat in the lineup, Martinez isn't going to be any more than an occasional catcher.Worth noting
The Tigers dominated the regular-season series against the Indians last season, winning 15 of 19 meetings, including two streaks of seven straight.
Ace Justin Verlander will start Thursday on four days' rest against the Indians in the series finale. The move was intended to get Verlander back in the habit of pitching on four days' rest, which he prefers, though Ausmus said it was also done to split up Rick Porcello and Drew Smyly. Porcello's turn will be pushed back to Friday against the Angels.
McAllister is 0-2 with a 4.85 ERA in six career starts against Detroit.Matt Slovin is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.
Tiger's MLB Game Notes
Dirks, Andy (LF)
(Recovering from March 2014 back surgery, on the 15-day disabled list, Due Back: Possibly June)
Iglesias, Jose (SS)
(Stress fractures in both shins, 60-day disabled list, Due Back: Possibly late 2014)
Rondon, Bruce (P)
(Tommy John surgery-Right elbow, 60-day disabled list, Due Back: 2015)
______________________________________On the InternetMLB.TV Gameday Audio
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______________________________________ Wednesday, April 16:TIGERS:
Up next (Probable Pitchers)
(LHP Drew Smyly
(1-0, 0.00 ERA)) ATINDIANS:
(RHP Danny Salazar
(0-1, 6.75 ERA))7:08p p.m. ET (FS-D+, MLBN, FM 97.1) Thursday, April 17:TIGERS:
(RHP Justin Verlander
(1-1, 2.57 ERA)) ATINDIANS:
(RHP Justin Masterson
(0-0, 5.87 ERA))1:08p p.m. ET (FS-D, MLBN, FM 97.1) Friday, April 18:TIGERS:
(RHP Rick Porcello
(1-1, 4.15 ERA)) ATANGELS:
(TBA ERA))7:08p p.m. ET (FS-D, FM 97.1)
Sat, 4/19 Angels 1:08p FS1, FM 97.1Sun, 4/20 Angels 1:08p FS-D, FM 97.1
Mon, 4/21 White Sox 7:08p FS-D, FM 97.1
Tue, 4/22 White Sox 7:08p FS-D, MLBN, FM 97.1
Wed, 4/23 White Sox 7:08p FS-D, FM 97.1
Thu, 4/24 White Sox 1:08p FS-D, FM 97.1