Thoughts on game 14 of 162

After struggling to get anything going at the plate for most of Friday’s game, the Tigers bats came alive in the 10th inning. Detroit exploded for seven runs in the inning en route to earning their fourth straight victory and evening their record at 7-7. The win was the 1,500 for Tigers manager Jim Leyland.

Clutch hit: Brennan Boesch, who finished 3 for 5, connects for a two-RBI double in the 10th inning of Fridays 8-4 win over the Athletics. (AP)

W: Brayan Villarreal (1-0); L: Brian Fuentes (0-2)

Heroes: Miguel Cabrera / Brennan Boesch

Cabrera rescued the Tigers and helped force extra innings with his solo home run to ninth off A’s closer Brian Fuentes to lead off the ninth. Boesch drove in the go-ahead runs by roping a two-run double to right field on a two-out pitch. Boesch was 3 for 5 to boost his average to .318.

Key sequence: The top of the 10th when the Tigers hitters showed patience. After a lead off single by Alex Avila, Leyland pinch hit Jhonny Peralta for Will Rhymes. Peralta drew a one-out walk and Ryan Raburn followed with a walk to load the bases for Boesch and set up the go-ahead RBI double. The struggling Victor Martinez, who had two hits, also had a big RBI single after the A’s elected to intentionally walk Cabrera to face him.

Making strides: Rick Porcello turned in his best start of the season, giving up just one earned run and seven hits in six innings. He exhibited better control with just one walk while striking out four. Porcello had given up five earned runs in each of his first two starts this season.

Impressive debut: Al Alburquerque was impressive in his major league debut, pitching two scoreless innings. He took over for Porcello in the seventh and kept the Athletics off the board. He allowed one hit, walked one and struck out three while displaying a strong slider.

Oakland bullpen woes: The Tigers were once again unable to solve the Athletics’ starting pitcher but did do their damage against the bullpen for the second straight contest. Brian Fuentes, who is filling in at closer for the injured Andrew Bailey, blew the save in the ninth by giving  up the tying run on Cabrera’s homer. He also stayed on to pitch part of the 10th and wound up taking the loss. Fuentes gave up six runs (three earned) and two hits in 1 1/3 innings.

Up next: At Oakland, 4 p.m. today

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