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A sometimes-irreverent look at Detroit's Boys of Summer, the Tigers, as they try to return to the top of the American League Central.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Five key plays in the Tigers' 11-4 win over the Astros

DETROIT — Five key plays from the Tigers’ 11-4 win over the Astros:

First inning >> After a cue-ball double from Jose Altuve down the first-base line to start off his first-ever big-league inning, rookie Robbie Ray got Dexter Fowler to hit a simple grounder to Miguel Cabrera at first. Fowler beat Ray to the first-base bag, though, and the rookie had runners on the corners with no outs. He’d strike out the next two, then get an inning-ending groundout to pitch around the trouble.

First inning >> Torii Hunter doubled to extend his hitting streak to 13 games, then abruptly took himself out of scoring position by trying to steal third. He was thrown out by several steps by Astros catcher Jason Castro. One pitch later, Miguel Cabrera homered.

Third inning >> Brett Oberholtzer’s first four pitches of the inning were all put in play, resulting in three straight singles (the last two of the bloop variety), and a sacrifice fly making it a 2-0 game. Victor Martinez added an RBI single to extend his hit streak to nine games.

Fourth inning >> After two singles to start the inning, Austin Jackson stole his third base of the season — giving the Tigers 25 on the season, and at least one in 16 of 28 games. It paid off a batter later, as he trotted home on Danny Worth’s sacrifice fly, making it 4-0.

Sixth inning >> Ray gave up two singles to start the frame, then got Chris Carter to pop one up into shallow right field. Ian Kinsler camped under it, but dropped the ball (above), then rallied to get the force out at second. Fowler scored from third on the drop. Evan Reed needed just one pitch to induce a double play after relieving Ray.


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