Fulmer throws 7 2/3 shutout innings in Tigers' 4-1 win
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Michael Fulmer took his place in Detroit history with the best effort yet of his young career.
Nick Castellanos homered and Cameron Maybin doubled in a run, giving the rookie right-hander more than enough support in the Tigers' 4-1 victory over the Oakland Athletics on Friday night.
James McCann and J.D. Martinez also drove in runs for the Tigers, who have won nine of 11. Ian Kinsler was a home run shy of the cycle.
Fulmer (4-1) retired 14 of the first 15 batters he faced, with Khris Davis' single with two outs in the second inning the only smudge of an otherwise dominating performance.
He became the third Tigers' pitcher to throw at least 7 2-3 innings, allow no runs and three hits or fewer within his first six starts and the first since Pat Underwood in 1979.
''Early on I had a little trouble getting loose, but once I got loose and settled in, everything kind of flew by,'' Fulmer said. ''Credit to the one guy in front of me and all seven behind me. It was a great team effort, a good team win.''
Fulmer, who walked one and struck out three, retired 14 hitters on groundballs and five on flyballs.
''I tried to pitch more to contact,'' he said. ''I want to be more efficient and I want to go deeper into games. So that means throwing more quality fastballs and getting weak contact.''
A's starter Sean Manaea (1-3) gave up three runs and nine hits in six-plus innings. He walked two and struck out four.
Jed Lowrie tripled home a run in the ninth for the A's, who have lost seven of eight but avoided being shut out for a second time.
Fulmer, making his sixth career start, did not allow another baserunner after Davis' single until he walked Chris Coghlan in the sixth and hit Lowrie with a pitch in the seventh. He did not allow a runner past first through seven innings.
Maybin has hit safely in all 10 games he's played since coming off the disabled list.
ROUTINE 3-2 DOUBLE PLAY
It took three different official scoring rules to verify that an inning-ending double play was the right call by home plate umpire Joe West.
A's first baseman Yonder Alfonso caught Victor Martinez's foul pop with Kinsler edging off third. Alfonso threw home and the ball glanced off Martinez's foot and went to the backstop. West immediately called the play dead and ruled Martinez out for interference.
''There are three places in the rule book that cover it,'' West said. ''First of all, he's a player in the game. Even though the interference was unintentional, he is the exception to the rule. Exception is members of the team at-bat who are participating in the game. He's participating in the game. He therefore has to avoid the throw.''
Said Manaea: ''I've never even heard of that. A lot of the guys were saying they've never seen it. It was pretty unique and a good way to get out of an inning.''
Tigers: RHP Jordan Zimmermann (right groin strain) threw a long toss session before the game and will throw a bullpen session on Saturday. ... RHP Shane Greene (blister on right middle finger) made a rehab start on Wednesday with Toledo and joined the team in Oakland, where he will throw a bullpen before the team decides what to do with him.
Athletics: C Josh Phegley was activated from the DL and C Matt McBride was optioned to Triple-A Nashville before the game. ... RHP Sonny Gray (right trapezius strain) is scheduled to throw off a mound Saturday. ... RHP Henderson Alvarez (right shoulder) resumed throwing again, playing catch at 90 feet. He'll be extended to 105 feet on Saturday.
Tigers: LHP Matt Boyd (0-0, 0.00) will be recalled from Triple-A Toledo to make his second appearance of the season, and his first start, on Saturday. He threw 4 2/3 shutout innings in relief a month ago.
Athletics: RHP Jesse Hahn (1-2, 4.07) gets the call for Saturday's game. He's 2-0 in two starts against the Tigers, both last year.