Tillman outduels Verlander, O’s top Tigers to increase lead
DETROIT (AP) — Chris Tillman pitched six impressive innings in his return from the disabled list, and Michael Bourn and Jonathan Schoop homered off Justin Verlander to lead the Baltimore Orioles to a 3-1 victory over the Detroit Tigers on Sunday.
Baltimore moved two games ahead of Detroit in the postseason race — the Orioles entered the day in position to be the American League’s second wild card.
Tillman (16-5) allowed a run and four hits after being activated before the game. He hadn’t pitched since Aug. 20 because of right shoulder bursitis.
Three relievers finished for the Orioles, with Zach Britton pitching the ninth for his 41st save in 41 chances. Britton retired pinch-hitter Casey McGehee with two on for the final out, taking sole possession of the AL saves lead.
Verlander (14-8) lasted only five innings, ending his streak of 11 straight quality starts.
The Orioles lead the majors with 226 home runs, but Bourn has only two of them. His two-run shot off Verlander in the third opened the scoring.
Bourn is 14 for 37 (.378) in his career off Verlander, but this was the first time he’d gone deep against the Detroit right-hander.
Schoop’s 23rd homer of the season made it 3-0 in the fourth, and Detroit’s only run came on Ian Kinsler’s RBI single in the fifth.
The Tigers put runners on first and second in the eighth before Miguel Cabrera bounced into an inning-ending double play against Mychal Givens. They had runners at first and second in the ninth when James McCann struck out and McGehee grounded out to end it.
Cabrera went 0 for 4 and failed to hit the ball out of the infield.
J.J. Hardy had three hits for the Orioles.
Verlander allowed three runs and seven hits in his second loss since the All-Star break.