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Tigers 4, Indians 1

The SportsXchange

DETROIT -- Jose Alvarez limited Cleveland to one run in six innings in his major-league debut and Don Kelly hit a tiebreaking three-run homer as the Detroit Tigers handed the Indians their seventh straight loss, 4-1, on Sunday at Comerica Park.

Alvarez, who was recalled from Triple A Toledo on Saturday, didn't give up a hit until Ryan Raburn's solo homer in the fifth. He allowed three hits and one walk and struck out seven while making a spot start for Anibal Sanchez, who felt stiffness in his pitching shoulder and upper back after his last start.

Kelly's one-out, three-run homer in the sixth off Justin Masterson (8-5) snapped a 1-1 tie and lifted the Tigers to their fourth straight victory and a three-game series sweep. They stretched their American League Central lead to 5 1/2 games.

Joaquin Benoit picked up his third save after Drew Smyly pitched two scoreless innings.

The Indians' road losing streak increased to 11 games. They haven't lost that many consecutive road games in a season since June 21-July 12, 1991, when they dropped 12 straight.

A leadoff walk to Miguel Cabrera got Masterson in trouble during the sixth. Prince Fielder followed with a single and, one out later, Kelly hit a low, inside pitch over the right-field wall for his third homer this season.

Detroit scored the first run on Alex Avila's bases-loaded sacrifice fly in the second.

NOTES: Jhonny Peralta was not in Detroit's the starting lineup. Peralta, who leads all American League shortstops with 74 hits and a .338 average, had a career .067 average against Masterson and manager Jim Leyland thought it was a good time to give Peralta a rest. ... The Tigers had won 31 of their last 41 games against the Indians at Comerica dating to the 2009 season, the most home victories against any team during that span. ... Detroit begins a six-game road swing at Kansas City on Monday, and Cleveland wraps up a nine-game trip with three games at Texas in a series that also starts on Monday. ... Indians pitcher Carlos Carrasco dropped his appeal of a Major League Baseball suspension for "intentionally throwing" at New York's Kevin Youkilis in April and began serving it on Sunday. He had his penalty reduced from eight games to seven and will be eligible to return June 17 against Kansas City. Carrasco was recalled from Triple-A Columbus before Saturday's game and was the losing pitcher. ... Cleveland's Nick Swisher ended an 0-for-26 streak with a sixth-inning single.
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