User ID
Password
  Forgot User ID
or Register Today!
VegasInsider.com
Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Follow Us on Google+ VI Mobile Scores and Betting Odds
Home
NFL
NBA
NHL
MLB
NCAA FB
NCAA BK
Golf
Auto Racing
Horses
Boxing/MMA
More
Betting Tools

 
Tigers turn to Verlander after collapse

New Sportsbook.ag customers: Make your 1st bet, get your 2nd bet free, 100%, winnings paid in cash.
Join Now

Already have an account? Click here to view new Exclusive Rewards!

DETROIT (AP) - The last time Justin Verlander took the mound, his team's season was on the line.

Advertisement
The stakes won't be quite that high for his next start, but the Detroit Tigers could certainly use another brilliant performance from their star right-hander after blowing a chance to take control of the AL championship series.

Detroit wasted a five-run lead Sunday night in Game 2, allowing the Boston Red Sox to even the series with a 6-5 victory. David Ortiz's tying grand slam in the eighth inning snapped the Red Sox out of a hitting funk, and if Boston goes on to win the pennant, there may be little doubt about the turning point in this series.

Verlander's job is to steady the defending AL champion Tigers.

``Obviously that was a tough one,'' Verlander said. ``At the same time you know this series is going to be a dogfight. Nobody is going to walk over anybody.''

The Tigers looked like they were ready to roll through the series after they won the opener and took a 5-0 lead in Game 2. Anibal Sanchez held Boston hitless for six innings on Saturday, and Max Scherzer allowed a run and two hits in seven innings Sunday.

Boston trailed 5-1 in the eighth in Game 2 before a remarkable rally against four relievers. Ortiz tied it with a two-out grand slam off closer Joaquin Benoit.

``I made a mistake that I take full responsibility for,'' Tigers manager Jim Leyland said. ``I should have just reminded him that we didn't want Ortiz to really beat us. He tried to make a great pitch. He tried to get it low and away out of the strike zone, but he didn't get it there.''

Boston managed to win one of two at home despite striking out 32 times - eight more than the previous record for the first two games of an LCS, set by the Los Angeles Dodgers a day earlier. The Red Sox are hopeful their bats will come around, starting against Verlander in Game 3 at Comerica Park on Tuesday.

``I think we certainly gained some confidence in the last couple innings,'' Boston manager John Farrell said. ``The work of Sanchez and Scherzer has been nothing short of spectacular. ... We feel like tomorrow's starter in Verlander is going to be a similar, if not a more difficult, challenge than what we faced already.''

After a pedestrian regular season by his standards, Verlander pitched15 scoreless innings in the division series against Oakland, including eight in a winner-take-all Game 5. The Tigers have taken no-hitters into at least the sixth inning in three straight games, a remarkable feat even for a staff that set a major league record with 1,428 strikeouts during the regular season.

Detroit's starters have picked up where they left off during last year's American League playoffs, when the Tigers' rotation posted a 1.02 ERA through the division series and ALCS. Detroit won the AL pennant before being swept by San Francisco in the World Series.

``We've got a starting rotation that's relentless, and I said that before the series started. Every guy has their unique ability to shut down a team in their own way,'' Verlander said. ``I'm just one of the four guys right now.''

The Red Sox will send John Lackey to the mound to face Verlander. Lackey was able to make 29 starts during the regular season, posting a 3.52 ERA after missing all of 2012 following elbow ligament-replacement surgery.

Lackey will try to hold Detroit's offense in check and hope the Red Sox can become the first team this postseason to break through against Verlander.

``We've got a great lineup. I'm going into the game with a great group of guys behind me,'' Lackey said. ``Those guys are going to fight him. He's kind of our lineup's problem. I've got my own problems with their lineup.''

Leyland says he'll probably play Jhonny Peralta at shortstop for a second straight game, with Andy Dirks in left field instead of Don Kelly. Boston's Mike Napoli is expected to be back at first base in a lineup similar to what the Red Sox used in Game 1.

Those are minor adjustments, obviously. Don't expect too many drastic changes as this series progresses. Both teams rely on established stars who have played in their share of big postseason games.

``It's always nice to have Justin Verlander on the mound no matter what the situation is,'' Leyland said. ``There won't be any carry-over for our guys from that game last night. That's over with.''

AP NEWS
The Associated Press News Service

Copyright 2014
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved

  
HEADLINES
Rogers: Wednesday's Tip Sheet
Akins: Diamond Trends - Wednesday
Rose: Who's Not Hot - AL
Tigers lean on experienced trainer
Cardinals activate Siegrist from DL
Selig still waiting on Tommy John report
MORE HEADLINES
 
Why Buy Picks From VegasInsider.com
MLB Pro Baseball Handicapper Sports Picks Records
MLB Hot Streaks
15-5 L20 Guarantees, +7,760 TY
13-1 L14 Totals, +2,785 This Year
6-0 L2 Days +2,336 This Season
12-5, +967 Record Last 4 Days
13-4 G-Plays, +1,568 This Year
4-1 L2 Days, 11-2 Win Streak
+2,517 Net Proftis This Year
25-14 +1,236 L39, +2,104 TY
4-2 L6, +2,174 MLB Totals TY
5-1 +622 L6 G-Plays, +1,617 TY
3-0, +315 Last Night
10-4 Last 14 MLB Totals
6-0 L6, 12-3 +937 L15 Guarantees
+1,506 Picks This Year
MLB Pro Baseball Expert Sports Picks - Boston Red Sox at Toronto Blue Jays
2014 MLB SEASON PICK RECORDS
Money Leaders
Handicapper Money
Antony Dinero + 7760
Bruce Marshall + 2785
The Gold Sheet + 2517
Underdog Leaders
Handicapper Money
Bruce Marshall + 2997
James Manos + 2392
Dave Cokin + 1477
Over-Under Leaders
Handicapper Money
Antony Dinero + 2469
Matt Zylbert + 2174
Tony Stoffo + 1359
Guaranteed Leaders
Handicapper Money
Dave Cokin + 1117
Doc's Sports + 1090
Antony Dinero + 574
Favorite Leaders
Handicapper Money
Antony Dinero + 3824
Mike Rose + 1929
Kevin Rogers + 1690
Member Leaders
Handicapper Money
Mike Rose + 1513
Bruce Marshall + 1358
The Gold Sheet + 1339
MORE PICK RECORDS
  
corner graphic
With a VI Gold Membership, you can SAVE 10% off a Live Odds subscription, SAVE 20% off Daily Pick packages, and receive access to up to 1,000 Member Plays each month!