McCann enjoys winning trek around bases

Game-winning shot sets off Tigers' celebration

McCann enjoys winning trek around bases

DETROIT -- The last time James McCann hit a walk-off home run, he was still in college. He powered Arkansas past LSU four years ago in front of a record crowd in Fayetteville, Ark., and a national television audience.

The last time McCann hit a ball over the fence was his final game as a Toledo Mud Hen last August. His first Major League home run April 29 was an inside-the-park homer at Minnesota.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. 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.

McCann's HR in 11th lifts Tigers past Astros

McCann's HR in 11th lifts Tigers past Astros

DETROIT -- Preston Tucker's first Major League home run sent the Astros into extra innings against the Tigers after a five-run deficit, but James McCann's second career homer was a walk-off shot for Detroit in the 11th, sending the Tigers to a 6-5 win Thursday afternoon at Comerica Park.

The Astros came to town for a series-opening matinee leading the American League in home runs and strikeouts, and lived up to both. After 12 strikeouts over 6 2/3 innings from reigning AL strikeout champion David Price, Houston rallied with five runs from the seventh inning on, capped by Tucker's pinch-hit homer off Joakim Soria. McCann answered with his first traditional home run, sending Tony Sipp's offering out to left leading off the bottom of the 11th. His only previous shot was an inside-the-park home run April 29 at Minnesota.

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

A better Price may be difficult to find

Lefty eases way through 6 2/3 with 12 strikeouts

A better Price may be difficult to find

DETROIT -- Forget David Price's first start of the season, an 8 2/3-inning gem, or his complete-game win on May 2. The Tigers left-hander said Thursday afternoon's performance against the Astros was better.

During Detroit's eventual 6-5 win at Comerica Park, Price set a new season high with 12 strikeouts in 6 2/3 innings, and was nearly untouchable until Houston tallied three runs -- two earned -- in the seventh.

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Alejandro Zúñiga is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Miggy fifth-youngest to reach 1,400 RBIs

Miggy fifth-youngest to reach 1,400 RBIs

DETROIT -- Miguel Cabrera became the 76th player in Major League history, and the second Venezuelan-born Major Leaguer, to 1,400 career RBIs when he singled home Andrew Romine on Thursday afternoon against the Astros at Comerica Park.

Cabrera, who joined the 400-homer club last Saturday and passed Andres Galarraga for the most home runs by a Venezuelan player, joined Galarraga in the 1,400-RBI group. At 32 years and 33 days, he's also the fifth-youngest player to reach the mark.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. 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.

Rondon hits 99 on radar gun in rehab outing

Rondon hits 99 on radar gun in rehab outing

TOLEDO, Ohio -- Tigers reliever Bruce Rondon hit 99 mph on the radar gun at Fifth Third Field on Thursday night in the first outing of his rehab assignment for the Triple-A Toledo Mud Hens. That in itself was a good sign, though the command has a little ways to catch up.

Rondon gave up a run on two hits in two-thirds of an inning in his first game action since suffering biceps tendinitis in the final week of Spring Training. His fastball generally sat at 97-98 mph on the stadium radar gun, including a 98-mph pitch he spotted for a called third strike for his first out before topping out at 99 on his final hitter.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. 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.

Simon tries to get back into win column against Astros

Simon tries to get back into win column against Astros

On Friday night at Comerica Park, in the second contest of a four-game series, Alfredo Simon takes the mound for the Tigers against right-hander Collin McHugh and the Astros.

Simon (4-2, 3.04 ERA) hasn't earned a win since beginning the season with four straight, though he's had several solid outings. On Sunday, the righty limited the Cardinals to two runs over six innings but picked up the loss as Detroit's offense faltered.

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Alejandro Zúñiga is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cespedes has a knack for stealing third

Secondary lead, anticipation keys to element of surprise

Cespedes has a knack for stealing third

DETROIT -- Martin Maldonado had a clear view from behind home plate to third base. Yoenis Cespedes didn't care. If he can get the lead he wants off second base, all it means is an obstructed vantage point for the catcher to watch him steal third.

That's all it meant Wednesday night. And when the Brewers catcher sailed his throw into left field, he had a good view of Cespedes heading home, having turned his knack for stealing third into a big run.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. 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.

Win for Warriors 9K to be held Memorial Day

Inaugural race ends inside Comerica Park

DETROIT -- Tigers right-hander Justin Verlander's Wins for Warriors, a foundation to support war veterans and their families, will take center stage at Comerica Park on Memorial Day.

The path for Wins for Warriors' inaugural 9K (about 5.6 miles) run ends inside the ballpark, with a portion near the warning track and the finish line at home plate. Participants have already raised more than $31,000, according to the event website, which will help fund organizations that provide aid to veterans experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder, depression or other ailments.

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Alejandro Zúñiga is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Castellanos' big hit lifts Tigers over Crew

Castellanos' big hit lifts Tigers over Crew

DETROIT -- Nick Castellanos awakened a Tigers offense that had been dormant all series with a bases-clearing triple in the eighth inning, breaking open a pitching duel and helping Detroit avoid a series sweep to the Brewers with a 5-2 win on Wednesday night at Comerica Park.

"It was trending like some of the recent games for about seven innings," Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said. "That's exactly what we were talking about, somebody to step up."

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AdamMcCalvy, like him on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

McCann adds to repertoire with nifty grab

McCann adds to repertoire with nifty grab

DETROIT -- Catcher James McCann may have had some Tigers fans double-checking their scorecards during Wednesday's series finale against the Brewers at Comerica Park.

In the fifth inning of Detroit's eventual 5-2 win, McCann leaped into the netting behind home plate to snag a Martin Maldonado foul fly for the third out. It was a play reminiscent of one Alex Avila made last September -- and has done other times throughout his career -- when he used the backstop as cushioning following an acrobatic grab.

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Alejandro Zúñiga is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Castellanos gives Tigers much-needed boost

Castellanos gives Tigers much-needed boost

DETROIT -- The Tigers' triples leaderboard includes speedsters Rajai Davis and Anthony Gose. It now includes Nick Castellanos.

The way Castellanos felt rounding second base Wednesday night on his third triple of the season -- clearing the bases, breaking open a tie game and sparking the Tigers' dormant offense to a 5-2 win over the Brewers -- speed didn't matter. He had the legs.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. 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.

Rondon to begin likely lengthy rehab stint

Reliever has to build endurance in Triple-A; Verlander progressing in rehab

Rondon to begin likely lengthy rehab stint

DETROIT -- The road back to the Tigers' bullpen for Bruce Rondon goes through Triple-A Toledo starting on Thursday. It is not expected to be a quick stop.

When Rondon unleashes his first fastball for the Mud Hens on Thursday night against Buffalo, it'll be the start of a buildup process for the 24-year-old. Eventually, that will have to include throwing on back-to-back days, the final step that Rondon was in the process of clearing when right biceps tendinitis flared up on him with less than a week before Opening Day.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. 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.

McCann leaps into netting for catch, is Spider-Man

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McCann leaps into netting for catch, is Spider-Man

ATTENTION SONY PICTURES: We've got your new Spider-Man right here and his name is James McCann. The 24-year-old rookie won the Tigers' backup catching job at Spring Training and has been making the most of his opportunities, hitting .282. 

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Anibal, wife launch charity for well-being of kids

Anibal, wife launch charity for well-being of kids

DETROIT -- As Anibal Sanchez and his wife, Ana, introduced Sanchez's Little Smiles, a new charity program they founded with the Tigers, the right-hander grew emotional while recounting a personal story.

In 2007, Anibal's baby son passed away of dengue fever, a mosquito-transmitted illness, and at Wednesday afternoon's news conference, the pitcher remembered feeling lonely during the ordeal. Sanchez's Little Smiles hopes to provide some relief to others facing similar hardships, hosting families with children suffering from health issues or other challenges for a night at Comerica Park.

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Alejandro Zúñiga is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

V-Mart lands on DL; Tigers recall Collins

No timetable set for All-Star DH's return from left knee inflammation

V-Mart lands on DL; Tigers recall Collins

DETROIT -- The Tigers didn't waste time with their options regarding Victor Martinez. In the end, however, the only option manager Brad Ausmus saw was to put his All-Star designated hitter on the 15-day disabled list with left knee inflammation. The team recalled outfielder Tyler Collins from Triple-A Toledo before Tuesday night's game, an 8-1 victory for the Brewers.

The move comes on the heels of a postgame meeting Monday night between Ausmus, team president/general manager Dave Dombrowski, owner Mike Ilitch and eventually Martinez, who went 0-for-4 with no balls hit out of the infield Monday night after resting his left knee for the better part of four games.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. 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.

Long ball bites Anibal; Nelson stymies Tigers

Long ball bites Anibal; Nelson stymies Tigers

DETROIT -- What began as a pitching duel between Anibal Sanchez and Jimmy Nelson became a Brewers runaway with three consecutive home runs in a nine-pitch span off Sanchez, sending Milwaukee to a second straight win over the Tigers with an 8-1 victory Tuesday night at Comerica Park.

Sanchez retired six of the Brewers' first seven hitters, the lone exception a Gerardo Parra walk, before he began to wobble. Martin Maldonado's third-inning drive died at the warning track in center field, but Carlos Gomez's two-out bunt single and another Parra walk extended the inning for the middle of Milwaukee's order to pounce. Ryan Braun drove a three-run homer off the right-field foul pole, Adam Lind sent a solo homer into the right-field seats, then Aramis Ramirez did the same to left for his second home run in as many nights.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AdamMcCalvy, like him on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Mike Bauman

V-Mart to DL could be a blessing in disguise

Tigers have depth, versatility to adjust while DH recovers from left knee injury

V-Mart to DL could be a blessing in disguise

There are not many teams that can get along without a player who went .335/.409/.565 the previous season, while leading the league in on-base percentage and OPS. The Tigers should be one of the happy exceptions.

That individual performance was the work of Victor Martinez last season, when he finished second in the voting for the American League Most Valuable Player Award. It was one of the finest seasons in an already impressive career.

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Mike Bauman is a national columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Home run trend continues to sting Sanchez

After 3 straight HRs in 3rd inning, righty has allowed 9 this season

Home run trend continues to sting Sanchez

DETROIT -- The home runs came so quickly Tuesday, three of them in a nine-pitch span, that Anibal Sanchez was still struggling to digest it after the Tigers' 8-1 loss to the Brewers. He was ready to go to work on it, but he wasn't completely sure how.

"Today is one of those days where everything happens so fast, that you don't realize what happened," Sanchez said.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. 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.

Offense sputters against Brewers' Nelson

Sinkerballer cruises through Tigers' short-handed lineup

Offense sputters against Brewers' Nelson

DETROIT -- Tigers manager Brad Ausmus believes his club has too much talent to be dropping games because of poor offensive showings.

But Tuesday's 8-1 loss to the Brewers at Comerica Park marked the 19th time this season -- and seventh time in the last 10 games -- Detroit has scored two runs or fewer in a contest. The Tigers managed just three hits, allowing Milwaukee starter Jimmy Nelson to cruise to his second win of the season.

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Alejandro Zúñiga is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Collins adds lefty bat with experience in bigs

Outfielder called up from Triple-A with V-Mart landing on disabled list

Collins adds lefty bat with experience in bigs

DETROIT -- Tyler Collins went third-person upon his return to the Tigers on Tuesday afternoon. But that person wasn't Victor Martinez. He knows better than to try to fill that role.

"I'm not coming to fill in for Victor Martinez," Collins said. "I'm just coming to play Tyler Collins' game and try to help the team win."

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. 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 tossed in 5th after Kinsler's strikeout

Ausmus tossed in 5th after Kinsler's strikeout

DETROIT -- Tigers manager Brad Ausmus was ejected from Tuesday's 8-1 loss to the Brewers after trying to keep second baseman Ian Kinsler from getting tossed.

Kinsler exchanged words with plate umpire Tripp Gibson III after his called third strike in the fifth inning, holding up two fingers to note the number of pitches he felt Gibson had missed. Ausmus jogged out of the dugout to try to get Kinsler back.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. 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.

Miguel Cabrera is amped about his first triple of '15

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Miguel Cabrera is amped about his first triple of '15

Entering Monday's game against the Brewers, Miguel Cabrera had hit 400 career home runs, 2,232 hits, 471 doubles -- and 15 triples. On the season, he had 10 homers, 46 hits, seven doubles and zero triples.

But in the third inning on Monday, Cabrera rocketed a ball to center field, just out of the reach of Carlos Gomez, and hustled around the bases for his first three-bagger of 2015 and the 16th of his career.

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Lobstein pitches well in defeat

Lobstein pitches well in defeat

DETROIT -- Kyle Lobstein induced 14 of his 20 outs on ground balls. He needed one more groundout, or one more run of support. He got neither in the Tigers' 3-2 loss to the Brewers.

For someone who gave up twice as many home runs on Monday night -- two -- as he had given up in his first six starts this season, Lobstein kept the Tigers in their series opener against the struggling Brewers. Without much run support, however, the ground balls that kept his outing alive for 6 2/3 innings eventually doomed him in the seventh.

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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' Rondon draws raves after facing hitters

Verlander throws 'most intense bullpen' since going on DL

Tigers' Rondon draws raves after facing hitters

DETROIT -- The setting was a little different for Bruce Rondon, from empty seats at Comerica Park to teammates stepping in to bat. The hum of the fastball, however, seemed familiar.

After all the stops and starts to Rondon's rehab, the Tigers are hesitant to say their hard-throwing reliever is back after a 25-pitch session to hitters Monday afternoon. But there's a definite optimism in the tone of voice from manager Brad Ausmus on down.

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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.

Lobstein, Tigers edged out by Brewers

Lobstein, Tigers edged out by Brewers

DETROIT -- Like the mid-evening thunderstorms that rumbled through Michigan on Monday evening, the Brewers rolled into town and cooled off a Tigers offense that had seemingly heated up in St. Louis. Mike Fiers and the Milwaukee bullpen held down Detroit long enough for Carlos Gomez to strike with a go-ahead RBI single in the seventh for a 3-2 win at Comerica Park.

"We've said, 'What kind of team do we want to be?'" said Brewers manager Craig Counsell, who celebrated his two-week anniversary on the job. "When you see a game like tonight and you feel like we can be that team."

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Jason Beck and Adam McCalvy are reporters for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Kinsler keeps on bunching hits together

Kinsler keeps on bunching hits together

ST. LOUIS -- Ian Kinsler did it again.

Kinsler's 2-for-3 performance was one of the lone bright spots for the Tigers in a 2-1 loss to the Cardinals on Sunday night. Throw in a walk, and Kinsler reached base three times, consisting of one-third of the entire team's baserunners during the game.

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