Tough day in Chicago takes its toll on Tigers

Detroit loses two games on walk-off hits in four-hour span

Tough day in Chicago takes its toll on Tigers

CHICAGO -- The Tigers put up two game-tying rallies in less than 24 hours. They ended up with two walk-off losses in about a four-hour span for their troubles, leaving town with a four-game split from a series they felt they had a chance to sweep.

Not exactly an enjoyable Sunday afternoon.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tigers drop another heartbreaker on South Side

Tigers drop another heartbreaker on South Side

CHICAGO -- The White Sox began Sunday afternoon at risk of being swept in a four-game series against the Tigers. Instead, they ended the day with a series split thanks to two walk-off wins in a four-hour span. Melky Cabrera provided the latter with a single scoring Adam Eaton in the ninth, nullifying Detroit's three-homer rally in the top of the inning for a 5-4 White Sox win at U.S. Cellular Field.

"Baseball is funny like that," Eaton said. "It will beat you down, but then it will build you back up. It's a love-hate relationship, for sure. To have two walk-off wins, especially to get two wins off a great opponent like Detroit, and for them to be walk-offs, is huge for us."

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast.

Brian Hedger is a contributor to MLB.com based in Chicago who covered the White Sox on Sunday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tigers' Saturday rally spoiled by Sunday walk-off

Tigers' Saturday rally spoiled by Sunday walk-off

CHICAGO -- Neither a suspended game, a taxed bullpen or a suspension of starter Chris Sale could prevent the White Sox from tormenting the Tigers. Adam Eaton's two-out single in the ninth inning scored Avisail Garcia, earning Chicago a 4-3 win over Detroit Sunday afternoon in a game that started Saturday night.

White Sox closer David Robertson, who thwarted Detroit's eighth-inning threat before rain washed out Saturday night, came back to work the ninth on Sunday, stranding Ian Kinsler following his two-out bloop double. Garcia led off the bottom of the inning against lefty Justin Wilson with a chopper down the third-base line for a single, stole second when Jose Iglesias was late covering the bag, advanced on J.B. Shuck's groundout and scored on Eaton's grounder through the left side.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast.

Brian Hedger is a contributor to MLB.com based in Chicago.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Wilson benefits from midseason rest

Wilson benefits from midseason rest

CHICAGO -- When Tigers general manager Al Avila praised manager Brad Ausmus on Saturday for his work this season, his key example was bullpen management. It wasn't simply about managing veteran closer Francisco Rodriguez or the setup men Avila signed to help him, but guys like Alex Wilson, last year's do-everything reliever who has struggled for much of this season.

When Wilson hit 94 mph with his fastball on Friday while getting two key outs to protect a lead, Avila said, it was "probably as close as he came to how he was pitching last year. It was very encouraging to see."

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

On a roll in July, Verlander starts at Fenway

On a roll in July, Verlander starts at Fenway

While it has been a surreal two weeks for Drew Pomeranz since being traded from the Padres, the Red Sox left-hander said he's finally starting to settle in with his new team.

"It takes about a week," Pomeranz said. "When you transition anywhere, you have to remember what you've done all year. I know my approach, but they have their own approach here. It is all about integrating into one."

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Quinn Roberts is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Avila expects Tigers to stand pat at Deadline

Rotation to be replenished with returns of Zimmermann, Norris; bats stepping up for J.D.

Avila expects Tigers to stand pat at Deadline

CHICAGO -- Tigers general manager Al Avila made a major acquisition this weekend in the Windy City. He bought a new shirt, he joked, to talk with the media Saturday afternoon at U.S. Cellular Field.

He wore the shirt Saturday as he discussed the Tigers' situation heading into the Aug. 1 non-waiver Trade Deadline. He reiterated what he said when the Tigers were here last month: He does not expect to make a big move, buying or selling. He expects the Tigers to stand pat.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tigers' GM gives Ausmus vote of confidence

Avila won't discuss manager's contract until after season, but praises handling of team

Tigers' GM gives Ausmus vote of confidence

CHICAGO -- Tigers general manager Al Avila said Saturday he believes they have the team to get into the postseason. He also said he believes they have the manager to lead the way.

The answer was an explanation of why Avila doesn't anticipate swinging a major trade at the Aug. 1 non-waiver Trade Deadline, focusing instead on getting injured Jordan Zimmermann, Daniel Norris and J.D. Martinez back. But the latter part of Avila's answer also provided some insight into Brad Ausmus' situation.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cabrera's four-hit night tops White Sox

Cabrera's four-hit night tops White Sox

CHICAGO -- What began as a battle between two former Tigers top prospects and continued with two pitchers named Fulmer fell back on the usual Miguel Cabrera clutch hit. His two-run single in the seventh inning put Detroit ahead for good in a back-and-forth battle at U.S. Cellular Field, taking a 7-5 win over the White Sox Friday night.

Detroit had a 4-1 lead in the fifth inning, having battled former first-round pick Jacob Turner for 101 pitches over 3 1/3 nnings, before Justin Morneau's three-run homer powered a four-run fifth -- the largest inning off Tigers rookie starter Michael Fulmer this season -- to put Chicago in front. More >

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002.

Brian Hedger is a contributor for MLB.com based in Chicago.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bullpen picks up Fulmer with four scoreless

Bullpen picks up Fulmer with four scoreless

CHICAGO -- Michael Fulmer has picked up the Tigers pitching staff since his arrival, outperforming everyone's expectations. Friday's 7-5 win over the White Sox was the Tigers' chance to return the favor.

As Justin Morneau's first home run off Tigers pitching since 2013 carried out to right, the White Sox could celebrate more than a 5-4 lead in the fifth inning. They were one of the rare teams to rough up Fulmer this season, joining the Royals. Chicago put up as many earned runs in that inning (four) as Fulmer had allowed over 25 1/3 innings in his previous four starts combined.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Vizquel cracked up playing with toy shark on TV

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Vizquel cracked up playing with toy shark on TV

Like a cockatiel with a mirror, baseball players are fundamentally incapable of resisting the allure of the dugout TV cameras. Whether they're pelting a teammate with sunflower seeds during an interview or videbombing a reporter, the camera is a tractor beam they cannot resist. But those are actions of brash, youthful players. Rarely do you see the coaches taking part. Then again, no one is quite like Omar Vizquel. 

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Cabrera surpasses 1,500 career RBIs in win

Cabrera surpasses 1,500 career RBIs in win

CHICAGO -- The Tigers' Miguel Cabrera has been in the Major Leagues for 14 years. He has 11 All-Star selections, four batting titles, two Most Valuable Player awards and a Triple Crown on his resume. He still gets frustrated when a well-hit ball ends up in a glove.

"This game's about results," he said.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tigers catching tandem offers differing styles

Tigers catching tandem offers differing styles

CHICAGO -- The Tigers' Jarrod Saltalamacchia donned the catching gear and got behind the plate Friday against the White Sox, making his fourth start in six games. He had the task of catching rookie sensation Michael Fulmer, who has pitched to Saltalamacchia and James McCann seven games apiece.

On Saturday, the Tigers will send out Matt Boyd, who has pitched to only Saltalamacchia in his previous eight Tigers starts this season. But with the White Sox starting lefty Chris Sale, McCann could get back behind the plate for matchups.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Homers give Tigers the edge on South Side

Homers give Tigers the edge on South Side

CHICAGO -- Ian Kinsler and Miguel Cabrera broke the Tigers out of their offensive funk with fifth-inning solo homers off James Shields, powering Mike Pelfrey to his third win in 19 starts with a rain-shortened 2-1 victory over the White Sox on Thursday at U.S. Cellular Field.

The game went into a delay in the middle of the seventh inning, and was called after two hours and five minutes of persistent storms.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast.

Brian Hedger is a contributor to MLB.com based in Chicago who covered the White Sox on Thursday. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Miggy's bat awakens vs. White Sox

Tigers slugger belts first home run since June 29

Miggy's bat awakens vs. White Sox

CHICAGO -- The first sign that Miguel Cabrera's hitting career might not be done quite yet came with a pair of ground-ball singles before the Tigers left Detroit on Wednesday night. Then came some bigger, better swings in batting practice on Thursday afternoon at U.S. Cellular Field.

"It looked like his swing was easy again for him," manager Brad Ausmus said. "It didn't look like there was a lot of effort, and he took it right into the game."

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Ausmus stays out of Trade Deadline discussions

Ausmus stays out of Trade Deadline discussions

CHICAGO -- A year ago around this point in the season, Tigers manager Brad Ausmus was asked by his boss -- then-GM Dave Dombrowski -- whether he wanted to sit in on the club's trade discussions. Ausmus said no. He didn't want to sell at last year's Trade Deadline in the first place, and he didn't want to have to watch the steps of his team being broken up. So he went about his work while David Price, Joakim Soria and Yoenis Cespedes were dealt for prospects.

"Even at the time, I completely understood why Dave was doing it," Ausmus said. "Dave's a very savvy business executive, and it logically made sense. I understood it. But as a manager, you want to win, so trading away established Major Leaguers for guys who might be Major Leaguers at some point isn't something a manager who wants to win looks forward to doing."

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

McGehee may offer a right-field option

McGehee may offer a right-field option

CHICAGO -- Tigers utility man Mike Aviles earned his fourth consecutive start in right field on Thursday night against the White Sox. Tyler Collins felt improvement after receiving a chiropractic adjustment, but was held out for a second consecutive day after experiencing neck spasms. Meanwhile, Steven Moya continued his work with outfield instructor Gene Roof while picking up where he left off at Triple-A Toledo, having been optioned out over the weekend.

J.D. Martinez, whose fractured elbow created Detroit's current conundrum in right, began taking regular batting practice on the field Thursday for the first time since he was injured a month ago. He said later he felt fine on regular swings but felt discomfort when he had to reach. He played catch after his BP session from up to 130 feet and felt improvement, but has experienced lingering pain when he throws, leaving team officials debating whether to start him on a Minor League rehab assignment as a designated hitter and count on him getting strong enough to eventually play right field.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

JV strong, but Tigers lose HR duel to Twins

JV strong, but Tigers lose HR duel to Twins

DETROIT -- Max Kepler and Eddie Rosario hit ninth-inning home runs off Francisco Rodriguez to send the Twins to their first series win against an American League Central opponent since mid-May, taking the three-game set against the Tigers with a 4-1 win Wednesday afternoon at Comerica Park.

Ervin Santana and Justin Verlander gave up first-inning solo homers but settled in from there to deliver a pitchers' duel. While Verlander allowed only one other hit over his eight innings, walking two and striking out nine, Santana scattered six hits with a walk and two strikeouts to match for seven-plus innings.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast.

Kyle Beery is a reporter for MLB.com based in Detroit and covered the Twins on Wednesday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tigers' bats slump to finish out homestand

Tigers' bats slump to finish out homestand

DETROIT -- The first sign that Tigers manager Brad Ausmus was trying different ideas to get his team out of its offensive slump came before his players got to the park Wednesday. Ausmus let them sleep in a bit before their getaway-day game against the Twins, arriving by noon for the 1:10 p.m. ET start.

"Just kind of 'show and go,'" Ausmus said, "but didn't have much of an effect."

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Anibal to remain in rotation for another start

Norris slated for second Minor League rehab start for Triple-A Toledo

Anibal to remain in rotation for another start

DETROIT -- Anibal Sanchez's strong outing Tuesday will earn him at least one more turn through the Tigers' rotation. The veteran right-hander, who had been sent to the bullpen before injuries forced him back into a starting role, will start for the Tigers on Sunday against the White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field.

Sanchez gets the start in place of Daniel Norris, who will instead make a second Minor League rehab start for Triple-A Toledo on Saturday at Norfolk.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Anibal collects K's, much-needed confidence

Veteran looks like Sanchez of old, with swing-and-miss stuff leading to 10 strikeouts

Anibal collects K's, much-needed confidence

DETROIT -- Sometimes this year, the only way Anibal Sanchez seemed likely to get another ovation at Comerica Park would be on his way off the Tigers. So a reception like the one he received Tuesday felt surreal, if not for the pitching that preceded it.

As Sanchez walked off the mound in the seventh inning, much of the crowd of 32,030 rose to its feet and cheered him -- not his exit, but him. It was mainly for his six-plus innings with one run allowed at that point, but there was also some appreciation for the work he had to put in to get there.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tigers threaten in 9th, but can't overtake Twins

Tigers threaten in 9th, but can't overtake Twins

DETROIT -- An unexpected pitching duel between Tommy Milone and Anibal Sanchez broke out before the Twins busted out a five-run seventh inning, capped by a Brian Dozier two-run home run, for a 6-2 victory over the Tigers on Tuesday at Comerica Park.

The win was Minnesota's first over Detroit in eight tries this season.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast.

Kyle Beery is a reporter for MLB.com based in Detroit.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

J-Up sees Tigers as contenders, potential buyers

J-Up sees Tigers as contenders, potential buyers

DETROIT -- Justin Upton took a puzzled look Monday night when asked if the next 12 games were vital for the Tigers buying or selling leading into the Aug. 1 non-waiver Trade Deadline. To him, there shouldn't be much debate.

"That's a pretty iffy statement," Upton said. "I mean, we're in second place [in the American League Central]. We're pretty close in the Wild Card.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Where will Norris make next start?

Tigers could slot into rotation this weekend or have make one more rehab outing

Where will Norris make next start?

DETROIT -- Daniel Norris returned to Comerica Park on Tuesday feeling fine following his rehab start for Triple-A Toledo on Monday night, but the Tigers are holding off until at least Wednesday on a decision for his next step.

"Obviously it's up to them," Norris said. "I feel ready, though."

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Kinsler named Tigers' Heart and Hustle Award winner

Award recognizes passion, desire and work ethic

Kinsler named Tigers' Heart and Hustle Award winner

The Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association (MLBPAA) announced the 30 preliminary winners of the 2016 Heart and Hustle Award on Tuesday, honoring one player from each of the 30 Major League teams.

The Heart and Hustle Award, given annually, celebrates active players who demonstrate a passion for the game of baseball and best embody the values, spirit and traditions of the game. It's the only award in the Majors that is voted on by former players, and voting is conducted prior to the All-Star break.

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Matt Kelly is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @mattkellyMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Boyd, Upton power Tigers past Twins

Boyd, Upton power Tigers past Twins

DETROIT -- Matt Boyd tossed six scoreless innings in arguably his best outing as a Tiger, allowing Justin Upton's second-inning solo homer off Ricky Nolasco to stand as the lone run in a 1-0 win over the Twins on Monday at Comerica Park.

Boyd, making his second start since rejoining the injury-riddled Tigers rotation, held Minnesota to three hits and one runner in scoring position. The southpaw mixed fastballs and breaking balls to fan seven, including All-Star Eduardo Nunez and slugger Miguel Sano twice each. Boyd also induced seven ground-ball outs, including a key double play from Brian Dozier after Sano singled leading off the fourth.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast.

Kyle Beery is a reporter for MLB.com based in Detroit.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Well-grounded Boyd dominates Twins

Left-hander notches seven groundouts, fans seven batters

Well-grounded Boyd dominates Twins

DETROIT -- Some ballplayers escape to exotic locations for the All-Star break. Matt Boyd found peace and quiet with his wife along the lakeshore at a vacation house in Traverse City. He also had to find a place to do his weighted-ball workout routine, though, so he found an old tree stump.

"I just let it eat against the tree stump, knocked all the bark off of it," Boyd joked after a 1-0 win over the Twins on Monday night. "If I missed, it would've been in the water."

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Upton reaches 200-homer plateau

Upton reaches 200-homer plateau

DETROIT -- Justin Upton and Ian Kinsler had a friendly competition going earlier this season over who would reach 200 career home runs first. Ian Kinsler won the race July 3.

On Monday, it was Upton's turn during a 1-0 win over the Twins.

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Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.