(BOSTON) — Anibal Sanchez was dominant and left with a no-hitter through six innings of work in the Tigers 1-0 ALCS win over the Red Sox on Saturday night.
Sanchez and the Tigers bullpen held Boston without a hit until the ninth inning. Sanchez walked the bases loaded in the bottom of the sixth before he struck out Stephen Drew to end the inning.
Al Alburquerque and Jose Veras did not allow a hit after Sanchez left.
Joaquin Benoit recorded the first out in the bottom of the ninth before allowing Daniel Nava’s single to left. Following the hit to Nava, Benoit got Drew to fly out and Xander Bogaerts to pop-up to the shortstop to end the game.
“No, not really,” Tigers manager Jim Leyland said when asked if he was thinking about the combined no-hitter. “You never feel comfortable; I wasn’t really worried about a no-hitter. It worked out fine for us.”
Sanchez got the win and struck out 12, allowing six walks, with 116 pitches during six innings of work.
Jhonny Peralta drove in Miguel Cabrera with a single off Jon Lester in the top of the sixth for the only run of the game.
Lester pitched 6.1 innings and gave up the lone run with four strikeouts in the loss.
“I wouldn’t say patience or working deep counts wasn’t the reason we didn’t get hit until the ninth inning,” Red Sox manager John Farrell said of the effort by Sanchez and the Tigers bullpen.
Max Scherzer, who was 21-3 this season, will take the mound for the Tigers on Sunday night and the Red Sox will send Clay Buchholz to the mound.
“We’ll be ready to go tomorrow night,” Farrell said of facing Scherzer on Sunday and putting the tough game 1 loss behind them. “We have the ability to put tonight behind us; our guys will be ready to go.”
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Jill Martin, CNN