Tigers Defeat Athletics 3-0 in Decisive Game 5 in AL Playoffs

Justin Verlander pitched eight scoreless innings and Miguel Cabrera hit a two-run homer as the Detroit Tigers reached their third consecutive American League Championship Series with a 3-0 win at the Oakland Athletics.

The Tigers won the best-of-five division series three games to two and advanced to the ALCS against the Boston Red Sox.

Verlander, who threw a four-hit shutout with 11 strikeouts in a Game 5 division win at Oakland last year, was almost as good this time. He only allowed three hitters to reach base and struck out 10 before Joaquin Benoit took over in the ninth, getting three outs for the save.

The A’s didn’t have a baserunner until Josh Reddick walked with one out in the sixth inning. Their first hit came in the seventh on a two-out single by Yoenis Cespedes, and Reddick singled with two outs in the eighth.

After Verlander and A’s starter Sonny Gray each went through the lineup once without allowing a hit, the Tigers got four hits and two runs in the fourth on Cabrera’s home run.

Detroit added a run in the sixth on a run-scoring groundout by Omar Infante.

The A’s have now lost their last six winner-takes-all games, including last year’s Game 5 against the Tigers. The last time they won such a game was in the 1973 World Series against the New York Mets.

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