Simon grants mom's birthday wish in latest victory

Tigers starter fulfills request to strike out A-Rod, win game as he improved to 3-0

Simon grants mom's birthday wish in latest victory

DETROIT -- Alfredo Simon has never been 3-0 in his career until Monday. The third one, he said, was pretty important.

It was his mother's birthday, he said, and she had a specific request.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

No way, Jose! Jaws drop over shortstop's play

Tigers infielder leaves Yankees' speedy Gardner in disbelief with plant, throw across body

No way, Jose! Jaws drop over shortstop's play

DETROIT -- Omar Vizquel was on his way out of the clubhouse when someone informed the Tigers' infield coach that he has a pretty good shortstop. Vizquel, one of the greatest defensive shortstops of his generation, and others, joked about Jose Iglesias learning tricks from him.

Not even Vizquel might be able to teach Iglesias tricks like Monday.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tigers rally late to reward dominant Simon

Tigers rally late to reward dominant Simon

DETROIT -- On a night when the wind was gusting out to left field at Comerica Park, Alfredo Simon and CC Sabathia put on a pitchers' duel for most of Monday's series opener between the Tigers and Yankees. Mark Teixeira's home run to right field stood as the lone scoring until back-to-back RBI singles from J.D. Martinez and Yoenis Cespedes swung the game to Detroit in the seventh inning for a 2-1 Tigers victory.

The win improved the Tigers' record to 11-2, continuing their best start since 1984, and the best start in the Major Leagues this year. Six of those wins have come in starts by Simon and Shane Greene, who went into the season as the perceived back end of Detroit's rotation.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. Adam Berry is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MRI confirms right triceps strain for Verlander

Tigers ace in holding pattern as lingering soreness followed shortened simulated game

MRI confirms right triceps strain for Verlander

DETROIT -- Justin Verlander's lingering soreness after his simulated game last week was enough of a concern that he underwent an MRI exam. Results confirmed the standing diagnosis of a right triceps strain, according to Tigers head athletic trainer Kevin Rand.

The MRI exam took place Thursday, among other tests. The Tigers had avoided an MRI previously because the triceps strain wasn't in an area that concerned them about possible structural damage.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Stepping in for Verlander, Lobstein to face Yankees

Stepping in for Verlander, Lobstein to face Yankees

The Yankees and Tigers will continue their four-game series at Comerica Park on Tuesday, with right-hander Nathan Eovaldi set to square off against lefty Kyle Lobstein.

Eovaldi is seeking his first win with the Yankees after settling for a pair of no-decisions in his first two outings of the season, while Lobstein is coming off a victory over the Indians in his 2015 debut.

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Adam Berry is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tigers monitoring Nathan, Rondon in 'pen sessions

Tigers monitoring Nathan, Rondon in 'pen sessions

DETROIT -- While Joe Nathan threw a bullpen session Monday at Comerica Park, fellow Tigers reliever Bruce Rondon is scheduled to do the same on Tuesday in Lakeland, Fla.

For Nathan, placed on the 15-day disabled list nearly two weeks ago with a right elbow flexor strain, the session was his second of the week. He had a brief mound session Saturday after long-tossing.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Greene pounds the zone, improves to 3-0

Right-hander allows first earned run in sixth

Greene pounds the zone, improves to 3-0

DETROIT -- Shane Greene couldn't quite make history, but another top-notch performance helped the Tigers to a 9-1 win over the White Sox on Sunday to give Detroit the series win.

Technically, it was Greene's worst start of the season, but that's because he has been so dominant. Greene was looking to become the first Tigers pitcher to begin a season with three straight starts without an earned run. That lasted into the sixth inning Sunday, until a two-out Jose Abreu triple ended Greene's streak at 21 innings.

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Chris Vannini is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cespedes hits 2 HRs, plates 6

Clubs grand slam, two-run homer in first two ABs

Cespedes hits 2 HRs, plates 6

DETROIT -- After five games of cool bats, Yoenis Cespedes single-handedly turned things around for the Tigers, hitting two home runs in Sunday's 9-1 win over the White Sox as Detroit took the three-game series.

The two homers marked Cespedes' sixth multi-home run game and gave him a career-high six RBIs. It also left him 6-for-8 lifetime against White Sox left-hander Jose Quintana, with four home runs and nine RBIs.

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Chris Vannini is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Statcast showcases Cespedes' strong swing

Statcast showcases Cespedes' strong swing

Yoenis Cespedes is an imposing player on a baseball field, known for his tape-measure home runs.

Now, Statcast provides some further insight into the slugger's skills.

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

V-Mart may see fewer lefty ABs as knee issue lingers

DH feels pain in left knee when hitting left-handed

V-Mart may see fewer lefty ABs as knee issue lingers

DETROIT -- Victor Martinez was in the Tigers' lineup Sunday for a second straight game and recorded three hits in a 9-1 victory, but he was also pulled late in a blowout for the second straight game, as he returns from a nagging knee issue.

Martinez is two months removed from surgery on his left knee after tearing the medial meniscus in the offseason, and his ability to run well and hit left-handed remains questionable for the switch-hitting designated hitter.

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Chris Viannini is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cespedes, Greene power Tigers past White Sox

Cespedes, Greene power Tigers past White Sox

DETROIT -- Yoenis Cespedes' power stroke all but ensured Jose Quintana of getting a decision in Sunday's 9-1 victory for the Tigers over the White Sox at Comerica Park. But it was not the one sought for by the man with a Major League-high 40 no-decisions since 2012.

Cespedes hit two home runs, including a grand slam in the first inning, and drove in a career-high six to spark a Tigers attack that featured every starter getting on base at least once. Cespedes is now 6-for-8 lifetime against Quintana, with four homers and nine RBIs.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. Chris Vannini is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Bernie Pleskoff

Pleskoff: McCann can be everyday catcher

Pleskoff: McCann can be everyday catcher

Right-handed-hitting catcher James McCann won't just be remembered for hitting a bird perched on the backstop with a foul ball during Spring Training this year. No, there's much more to McCann's 2015 Spring Training story.

He had an outstanding offensive and defensive spring for the Detroit Tigers as he competed for the team's backup catcher job. He hit .348 in 49 plate appearances covering 21 games in Florida. His spring statistics came after a 2014 season at Triple-A Toledo where he hit .295 with seven home runs and 54 RBIs in 460 plate appearances. He hit .336 against left-handed pitching, which bodes well for potential success if he does in fact remain a platoon catcher this season.

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Bernie Pleskoff has served as a professional scout for the Houston Astros and Seattle Mariners. Follow @BerniePleskoff on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Nathan throws unplanned pitches after long toss

Tigers reliever 'felt so good,' set for bullpen session on Monday

Nathan throws unplanned pitches after long toss

DETROIT -- Saturday was a good day for Tigers reliever Joe Nathan, who opted to throw a few pitches after a good long-toss session before Detroit's 12-3 loss to the White Sox.

Nathan was placed on the 15-day disabled list on April 8 with a flexor strain in his right elbow, retroactive to the day prior. He said it wasn't feeling very good in recent days, but Saturday went well, and he decided to throw 15 pitches off a mound.

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Chris Vannini is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tigers' bats cooled off by opposition

Five-game stretch featured difficult pitching

Tigers' bats cooled off by opposition

DETROIT -- The Tigers entered Sunday's series finale against the White Sox having scored just 12 runs over their previous five games, but manager Brad Ausmus isn't concerned about it.

Detroit began the season 6-0, averaging 7.8 runs per game. In the past five games, the offense averaged only 2.4 runs.

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Chris Vannini is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Sanchez susceptible to long ball early in season

After Saturday's loss, Tigers righty has given up more homers in 2015 than in '14

Sanchez susceptible to long ball early in season

DETROIT -- It took just three starts to surpass a mark from last season for Tigers right-hander Anibal Sanchez, but it's not a good one.

Sanchez allowed two home runs in Saturday's 12-3 loss to the White Sox. Coupled with the three home runs allowed in his previous start at Pittsburgh, Sanchez has given up more home runs this season (five), than he did all of last season (four).

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Chris Vannini is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Anibal, Tigers have no answer for White Sox offense

Anibal, Tigers have no answer for White Sox offense

DETROIT -- Take Chris Sale and mix in the White Sox biggest offensive output of the 2015 season by a long shot and what do you have? A 12-3 victory for the South Siders on Saturday afternoon at Comerica Park and a long day for the Tigers and starting pitcher Anibal Sanchez.

The trio of Melky Cabrera, Jose Abreu and Adam LaRoche combined to go 10-for-16 with three doubles, two homers, 10 RBIs and six runs scored. Cabrera tied a career-high with four hits, done for the 13th time overall by the left fielder, while LaRoche and Abreu went deep. Abreu launched his second career grand slam to key a seven-run fourth and end the afternoon for Sanchez.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. Chris Vannini is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Iglesias off to hot start after struggling in spring

Tigers' No. 9 hitter led American League in batting average through 10 games

Iglesias off to hot start after struggling in spring

DETROIT -- Despite Tigers shortstop Jose Iglesias' struggles at the plate in Spring Training, manager Brad Ausmus remained optimistic. Nearly two weeks into the regular season, Ausmus' faith has been rewarded.

Iglesias batted .135 in the Grapefruit League, including a stretch of 23 at-bats without a hit. However, 10 games into the regular season, Iglesias led the American League with a .484 average (minimum 20 at-bats) and posted an on-base percentage of .529, including Friday's walk-off single to beat the White Sox.

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Chris Vannini is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Following pitchers' duel, Iglesias hits walk-off single

Following pitchers' duel, Iglesias hits walk-off single

DETROIT -- A true pitchers' duel between Jeff Samardzija and David Price ended with a 2-1 Tigers victory over the White Sox when Jose Iglesias delivered a walk-off single against Chicago reliever Zach Duke at Comerica Park on Friday afternoon.

Nick Castellanos started the winning rally when Avisail Garcia couldn't hang on to Castellanos' sinking liner to right. Garcia fired the ball in to second as Castellanos tried to stretch his single into a double, but shortstop Alexei Ramirez missed the tag although the throw beat Castellanos to the bag. Alex Avila dropped down a sacrifice bunt to move pinch-runner Andrew Romine over to third, and then Iglesias laced a single into right-center field past the drawn-in infield.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. Chris Vannini is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bang-bang play at second looms large in rally

Ramirez claims he tagged Castellanos, but Ventura doesn't challenge call

Bang-bang play at second looms large in rally

DETROIT -- Safe or out? Challenge or don't challenge?

Those were the prevalent questions circling the bottom of the ninth of the Tigers' 2-1 walk-off victory over the White Sox on Friday at Comerica Park. Nick Castellanos opened the frame with a sinking line drive to right off reliever Zach Duke that Avisail Garcia couldn't quite corral.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. Chris Vannini contributed to this story. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Motivated by Shark, Price turns in stellar start

Motivated by Shark, Price turns in stellar start

DETROIT -- David Price says he's getting better with each start, and he matched up with the Jeff Samardzija, the White Sox's big offseason acquisition, in a pitchers' duel on Friday afternoon at Comerica Park.

Price allowed one run on four hits over eight innings, though he left the game with a no-decision. The Tigers pulled out a 2-1 victory in the ninth on a walk-off single by shortstop Jose Iglesias.

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Chris Vannini is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Struggling with runners in scoring position, Tigers break through

Struggling with runners in scoring position, Tigers break through

DETROIT -- The Tigers had just one hit with runners in scoring position, but they made it count.

A single by shortstop Jose Iglesias scored pinch-runner Andrew Romine from third base to give the Tigers a 2-1 walk-off win over the White Sox on Friday at Comerica Park. Up until that point, however, it had been a frustrating day Detroit batters in big spots.

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Chris Vannini is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Ausmus: Rondon's return to Majors still long ways off

Ausmus: Rondon's return to Majors still long ways off

DETROIT -- Right-handed reliever Bruce Rondon was expected to pick up a ball and throw before Friday's game against the White Sox, but his potential return remains uncertain.

Before the game, manager Brad Ausmus said Rondon, who is dealing with biceps tendinitis, was scheduled to throw, but he's going to have to throw on back-to-back days without problems, and then there would be a rehab assignment.

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Chris Vannini is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Question mark entering season, rotation looking strong

Tigers' Greene, Simon deliver eight-inning scoreless starts this week

Question mark entering season, rotation looking strong

PITTSBURGH -- Tom Gorzelanny joined the procession of Tigers relievers to warm up Wednesday night, one of three to get up in the eighth inning or later of their series finale against the Pirates. He got up, made some throws, then sat back down.

Gorzelanny wasn't warming up to get ready for a game appearance. He was warming up to replace game work. So was Joba Chamberlain before him. Gorzelanny hasn't pitched in a game since Saturday in Cleveland. Chamberlain, one of Detroit's most heavily-worked relievers last season, has one appearance this season.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Simon, Rajai deliver as Tigers blank Bucs

Simon, Rajai deliver as Tigers blank Bucs

PITTSBURGH -- Right-hander Alfredo Simon threw eight shutout innings and center fielder Rajai Davis swatted the go-ahead hit for the second consecutive night as the Tigers beat the Pirates, 1-0, on Wednesday at PNC Park.

A night after right-hander Shane Greene efficiently shut down the Pirates for eight innings, Simon did the same, allowing two hits and striking out two as he breezed through the Bucs' lineup on 108 pitches.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. Adam Berry is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Verlander's sim game ends early due to fatigue

Tigers righty throws all of his pitches in pain-free outing

Verlander's sim game ends early due to fatigue

PITTSBURGH -- Justin Verlander threw 45 pitches over three innings in a simulated game Wednesday afternoon at PNC Park. What it means for his chances of pitching in an actual game soon remains to be seen.

Manager Brad Ausmus said a day earlier that Verlander was expected to throw four innings of about 15 pitches each, possibly longer if he felt good. Verlander said the session ended earlier due to shoulder fatigue, not pain.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rajai reflects on Jackie's legacy, then homers

Rajai reflects on Jackie's legacy, then homers

PITTSBURGH -- Like everyone in the Majors, the Tigers were all wearing No. 42 on Wednesday to celebrate the anniversary of Jackie Robinson's Major League debut. It's an occasion that is not lost on them.

"We have to be reminded of Jackie, every single year," outfielder Rajai Davis said. "His number is retired, not on just one team, on 30 different teams. He's the only guy."

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.