Miggy goes 4-for-4 with two homers to back right-hander
By Jim Hawkins / Special to MLB.com
Max Scherzer became the first pitcher since Roger Clemens in 1986 to start a season 12-0 on Friday, and the first Tigers pitcher ever to reach that lofty plateau.
But Scherzer insisted the credit for his historic record rightfully belonged to sluggers Miguel Cabrera and Prince Fielder, who together blasted three gigantic home runs as the Tigers snapped their three-game losing streak with a 6-3 victory over the Rays at Tropicana Field.
“I’m pitching well, but the reason why I’m 12-0 is our offense,” Scherzer said. “You got to see first-hand today the best player in the game [Cabrera] hitting two home runs on three pitches and go 4-for-4. Then Prince hits a bomb.
“My record is a reflection of our team. It was the offense that stepped up tonight. All I thought about was winning. That’s all that mattered. I don’t get caught up in the win-loss record, because it’s kind of flukey.”
Cabrera, the reigning American League Most Valuable Player and Triple Crown winner, homered with Austin Jackson aboard and one out in the first inning, then connected again leading off the fourth with a blast deep into the left-field seats.
Fielder called Cabrera’s home runs, which traveled 388 and 432 feet, “enormous.” And third-base coach Tom Brookens said, “The ball jumps off his bat, it’s just a different sound.”
Fielder himself blasted a towering two-run homer off the C-ring catwalk high above right field, 412 feet from home plate, that Cabrera laughingly said would have flown “to Miami,” if it hadn’t struck the catwalk.
“I was just glad it went out,” Fielder said. “If you can tell me a formula to do that all the time, I’ll do it.”
“The big guys did what they do, they hit some bombs, and Max did a terrific job, obviously — that’s a nice combination,” said Tigers manager Jim Leyland. “That’s the combination of how we get a lot of wins. We’re a good team and when we pitch good and hit good, we’re going to win some games.”
As for Scherzer’s 12-0 record, Leyland said, “That’s a nice individual thing. But more importantly, we needed a win.
“I guess that’s the Tigers’ all-time record, and the Tigers have been around a long time. That’s pretty impressive.”
FULL STORY AT MLB.COM
- Scherzer beats TB, sets club record with 12-0 mark (cbssports.com)
- Scherzer Remains Unbeaten, Improving To 12-0 (npr.org)