Tigers 4, Astros 3
The Tigers jumped out to an early lead in this one, scoring single runs in the 2nd and 4th to take a 2-0 lead, but the Astros came back and got to Doug Fister (4-0, 40 IP, 2.48 ERA, 3.09 FIP, 1.1 WAR) for 3 runs (2 earned) in a very strange 7th inning that featured scoring plays on an error and a peculiar infield hit. Otherwise, Fister was strong, striking out 4 and walking 1 in 6+ innings of work. Norris limited the Tigers on the other side and Smyly (2-0, 20 IP, 1.35 ERA, 1.67 FIP, 0.7 WAR) shut down the Astros in relief of Fister in the 7th and 8th. It was uneventful as far as close games go aside from an iffy homerun review in the 4th inning, until Alex Avila strode to the plate in the 9th inning with the team down a run with Don Kelly standing on first. He worked the count to 3-0 and then took a strike before smashing the 3-1 pitch over the left centerfield fence for a much needed go-ahead homerun (Avila has 4 HR this year but only a 56 wRC+). The win improves the Tigers to 17-11 on the season and 2-0 on the roadtrip and they’ll be back at it tomorrow behind strikeout artist Max Scherzer (3-0, 31.1 IP, 4.02 ERA, 1.68 FIP, 1.4 WAR) trying to lock in a series win.
The Moment: Avila knocks a go-ahead 2 run homer in the 9th.
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