PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. -- The Tigers defeated the Rays, 11-2, Thursday afternoon at Charlotte Sports Park.
The Tigers brought to Port Charlotte a lineup well-stocked with regulars. Miguel Cabrera could be counted among those taking the bus from Lakeland to Port Charlotte and the reigning American League Most Valuable Player put his team on the board in the first with an RBI double off Rays starter Roberto Hernandez.
Hernandez, who is competing for the No. 5 spot in the Rays' rotation, allowed one run on two hits and two walks while striking out one in 2 1/3 innings. The veteran right-hander threw 33 pitches of which 21 were strikes.
"I feel good today," Hernandez said. "I keep the ball down, I throw strikes and my body feels good."
Anibal Sanchez made his second start of the spring for the Tigers and his final start before joining Venezuela for the World Baseball Classic.
The right-hander allowed no runs on four hits and he struck out one. He has not allowed a run this spring.
Matt Moore, who will be the Rays' No. 2 or No. 3 starter, pitched 1 1/3 innings allowing two runs on three hits, including a run-scoring single to Nick Castellanos in the fourth.
Sam Fuld had a two-run triple off Ryan Robowski that tied the score at 2, but Jhonny Peralta grounded out against Kirby Yates in the fifth to drive home a run to put the Tigers up, 3-2.
Austin Jackson hit his first home run of the spring in the sixth when he connected off Jamey Wright with Castellanos aboard.
The Tigers put the game out of reach with a five-run ninth inning. Dixon Machado hit a three-run double to give Detroit the 11-2 lead.
Up next: The Tigers' Port-to-Port road trip takes them to Florida's other coast for a 1:10 p.m. ET game against the Mets at Tradition Field in Port St. Lucie. Justin Verlander will make his second start of the spring, while closing candidate Bruce Rondon prepares for his third appearance in relief. Left-hander Jonathon Niese is scheduled to start for the Mets. MLB Network will have the broadcast live at 1 p.m.
Bill Chastain is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.