Even with Miguel Cabrera on the bench, the AL Central-leading Detroit Tigers didn’t have too many problems beating the last-place Chicago White Sox.
With their slugger sitting out again, the Tigers will try to earn a fourth consecutive win Wednesday night in Chicago.
Cabrera left Monday’s series opener after aggravating a nagging left hip flexor injury. Manager Jim Leyland said the reigning AL MVP and the majors’ first triple crown winner in 45 years will miss this game, and it’s uncertain if he’ll return in this series.
Leyland, though, doesn’t think Cabrera will wind up on the disabled list.
The Tigers (55-44) rolled to a 6-2 victory Tuesday without the benefit of Cabrera’s MLB-best .358 average, 31 homers and 96 RBIs. Jhonny Peralta started the scoring in a three-run fourth inning with an RBI single and hit a solo homer in a three-run sixth.
“Everybody has problems,” Leyland said. “Everybody has injuries, and everybody has issues that they’ve got to deal with. We’ve really had our share this year.”
In its 34th loss in 49 games, Chicago (39-58) had as many errors (a season-high four) as hits until Paul Konerko’s two-run double in the ninth. The White Sox have committed seven errors in the first two games of this series, and their 68 this season are two shy of matching their 2012 total.
“I don’t think anyone saw this one coming this year with the way we played last year and we have pretty much the same pieces,” Konerko said. “The ball just kept rolling down the hill the wrong way, and we have not stopped it.”
Anibal Sanchez (7-7, 2.85 ERA) will try to help add to Chicago’s woes while snapping a two-game skid. The right-hander, though, started that losing streak by giving up five runs over 5 1-3 innings in his first career matchup with the White Sox, a 6-3 loss July 11.
Chicago rookie catcher Josh Phegley drove in most of those runs with his first career grand slam.
Sanchez was sharper in his return from the All-Star break Friday, allowing one run and four hits over six innings. He also walked a season-high five, though, and suffered a 1-0 defeat in Kansas City.
“I feel good because I kept the score right there,” Sanchez told the team’s website.
While Sanchez will try to repeat his last outing, John Danks (2-7, 4.52) is hoping for a better one. Chicago’s left-hander gave up five runs over seven innings Friday in a 6-4 loss to Atlanta after posting a respectable 2.93 ERA in his previous four outings.
Danks, however, is 0-2 with a 14.21 ERA in his last three starts against Detroit. He avoided a loss in his most recent matchup on May 14, 2012, despite giving up five runs and nine hits in just three innings.
Prince Fielder had three hits off Danks in that game, and Austin Jackson is 10 for 25 (.400) with two homers lifetime against him. Martinez is 7 for 31 (.226) but has three home runs.