Verlander shines, Rodriguez earns 400th save, Detroit wins

Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Justin Verlander throws during the first inning of a baseball game against the Philadelphia Phillies, Tuesday, May 24, 2016, in Detroit.

DETROIT (AP) — Justin Verlander struck out 10 in eight scoreless innings, and Francisco Rodriguez held on for his 400th save in the Detroit Tigers’ 3-1 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies on Tuesday night.

Miguel Cabrera drove in two runs for Detroit. Since losing 11 of 12 earlier this month, the Tigers have now won eight of nine.

Verlander (4-4) has allowed only four runs over his last four starts. He gave up three hits and two walks in a 108-pitch effort Tuesday.

Cabrera hit an RBI double in the first and a run-scoring groundout in the sixth. Rodriguez allowed a run in the ninth but closed the game out for his 14th save in 15 chances this year. He is the sixth pitcher to reach 400 career saves.

Jeremy Hellickson (4-3) allowed three runs and seven hits in seven innings. He walked one and struck out seven.

The Tigers were without Ian Kinsler (flu-like symptoms) and Justin Upton (right quadriceps tightness).

Detroit Tigers' Miguel Cabrera runs to second on a double to left center during the first inning of a baseball game against the Philadelphia Phillies, Tuesday, May 24, 2016, in Detroit.
Detroit Tigers’ Miguel Cabrera runs to second on a double to left center during the first inning of a baseball game against the Philadelphia Phillies, Tuesday, May 24, 2016, in Detroit.

Cabrera had hit five homers in his previous four games, and although the Phillies kept him from adding to that total, his double to left-center field was enough to give the Tigers a 1-0 lead. Detroit added two more runs in the sixth on Cabrera’s groundout and an RBI single by Victor Martinez.

After a two-out walk to Odubel Herrera in the third, Verlander retired 11 in a row until Tommy Joseph singled in the seventh. Verlander’s last pitch was a 97 mph fastball that sent Herrera down swinging in the eighth.

Rodriguez came to the Tigers in an offseason trade as part of Detroit’s latest attempt to solve its bullpen problems. He blew a save April 5 in the team’s first game of the season but has converted 14 chances in a row since then.

Rodriguez joined Mariano Rivera (652), Trevor Hoffman (601), Lee Smith (478), John Franco (424) and Billy Wagner (422) in the 400-save club.

Herrera was in the starting lineup after being pulled in the seventh inning the previous night when manager Pete Mackanin didn’t think he ran hard enough after hitting a grounder.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Tigers: Upton missed Monday’s game in addition to Tuesday’s. Manager Brad Ausmus said he’d likely be held out Wednesday, too, with an off day coming up Thursday. … RHP Jordan Zimmermann (strained right groin) is expected to pick up a ball Friday for long toss, and if that goes well, Ausmus says he’ll probably throw a side session Sunday.

UP NEXT

Phillies: Aaron Nola (3-3) takes the mound Wednesday as Philadelphia tries to avoid a three-game sweep against Detroit. He allowed five runs Friday against Atlanta, although only two of them were earned.

Tigers: Anibal Sanchez (3-5) starts for Detroit. He has allowed at least four runs in each of his last four starts.

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