Despite going 0-for-9 with runners in scoring position, the Tigers took advantage of walks and avoided a sweep, defeating the New York Mets 6-5 tonight.
Armando Galarraga won his first start since his (im)perfect game, throwing six strong innings, allowing five hits and four earned runs. Most of the Mets runs can be attributed to bloop and seeing-eye singles. Galarraga did not allow a hit until the fourth inning when a soft line drive fooled Brennan Boesch and sailed over his head.
The Tigers were able to build a 6-1 lead off homers from Magglio Ordonez and Ryan Raburn. They chased Mets starter Hisanori Takahashi in the fifth inning after he loaded the bases with no outs. Reliever Elmer Dessens promptly walked the next hitter, Brandon Inge, which forced home a run.
Brennan Boesch went 3-for-4 with a sharp double. He raised his average to .346 on the year.
Mets pitching surrendered seven walks, three of which turned directly into runs.
Four Tigers relievers totaled three innings, allowing five hits and just one earned run, which was a nice recovery for a bullpen that has struggled of late.
Once again, Jose Valverde pitched a smooth ninth for his 17th save of the year.
The Minnesota Twins were swept this weekend in Milwaukee, losing today by a final of 5-0. The Tigers are now just .5 games back of the first-place Twins. However, the Chicago White Sox, winners of nine straight, are breathing down their necks.
Detroit will head to Atlanta to face the Braves who are 24-7 at home. Andrew Oliver, the highly touted prospect, will make his first start for the Tigers. The Braves will throw Kris Medlen.