Detroit Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander throws against the Cleveland Indians in the first inning.
DETROIT — Justin Verlander pitched seven strong innings and received plenty of support as the Tigers cruised past the Indians 7-5 tonight at Comerica Park.
Verlander (8-4) allowed three runs on seven hits — five of which came in one inning — while Detroit blistered Cleveland starter Ubaldo Jimenez.
Jimenez was buffeted from every direction, by small ball and long ball, by walks and a key error.
The Tigers got to him him first with a home run by Victor Martinez to lead off the second inning, then added on 90 feet at a time. They pushed ahead 3-0 on the strength of seven straight at-bats in which the ball never left the infield. Two walks and a throwing error by first baseman Nick Swisher gave way to a run-scoring infield single by Torii Hunter and a bases-loaded walk to Miguel Cabrera.
The rest of Jimenez’s night went much the same, with the right-hander failing to record an out in the fourth. He allowed five runs — three earned — on seven hits while walking three.
Trailing 5-0, the Indians scored three runs in the fifth before Verlander finished strong.
Tigers closer Jose Valverde allowed solo homers to Jason Giambi and Drew Stubbs in the ninth innings.
The Indians lost their fifth straight and for the 13th time in 17 games.