Tigers set AL shutout record to start season, beat Twins 7-1
DETROIT (AP) Shane Greene and the Detroit Tigers set the modern AL record for the longest shutout streak to start a season, extending their string to 24 innings while beating the Minnesota Twins 7-1 on a rainy Thursday.
After the start was delayed by rain for over 3 1/2 hours, new Twins manager Paul Molitor's team dropped to 0-3. And when Minnesota scored its lone run in the seventh, it was unearned.
Detroit broke the AL mark of 22 innings set by the 1947 Chicago White Sox, STATS said. The longest such streak in the majors since 1912 is 32 innings by the 1963 St. Louis Cardinals.
Greene (1-0) gave up four hits in eight innings and struck out five.
Kyle Gibson (0-1) allowed six runs on eight hits and five walks in 3 2/3 innings.
The Twins scored when Joe Mauer walked and Kennys Vargas hit a doubled that was misplayed by left fielder Yoenis Cespedes. The franchise's previous worst run drought at the start of a year was 20 innings by the 1940 Washington Senators.
Following the wait of 3 hours, 36 minutes at the start, the Tigers got off to a quick start.
Anthony Gose led off with a bloop double, Ian Kinsler and Victor Martinez walked to load the bases, and J.D. Martinez and Cespedes followed with RBI singles.
Victor Martinez hit an RBI single in the second and he grounded into a run-scoring double play in the fourth. J.D. Martinez followed with a long homer to right, making it 6-0.
Alex Avila added an RBI single in the fifth.
Greene, meanwhile, didn't get his first three-ball count until the sixth inning.
Twins: RHP Ricky Nolasco went back to Minneapolis after Wednesday's start to get an MRI on his pitching elbow. Molitor said that Nolasco felt pain during his final inning of work. They did not expect results until Thursday evening. ... C Chris Herrmann left Thursday's game after two innings. He was cut on the bridge of the nose by a foul tip on Gibson's first pitch of the game, but passed concussion tests.
Tigers: RHP Justin Verlander (triceps strain) played catch in the outfield before the game. He is on the disabled list for the first time in his career. ... RHP Bruce Rondon (Tommy John surgery) has been throwing without discomfort, according to Tigers manager Brad Ausmus.
Twins: Travel to Chicago for a three-game series against the White Sox.
Tigers: Travel to Cleveland for a three-game series against the Indians.