Indians 3

(14-13, 7-8 away)

Tigers 7

(12-13, 7-7 home)

    1:05 PM ET, March 30, 2005

    Joker Marchant Stadium, Lakeland, Florida 

    123456789 R H E
    CLE 110000100 3 - -
    DET 52000000 - 7 - -

    Detroit 7, Cleveland 3

    LAKELAND, Fla. (AP) -- Jake Westbrook struggled in his last start before he takes the mound on opening day, giving up seven runs in just two innings of the Cleveland Indians' 7-3 loss to the Detroit Tigers on Wednesday.

    The right-hander was hit on his pitching hand Friday in a minor league game, but said it didn't give him any trouble Wednesday when he gave up six hits, three walks and a hit batter.

    "I was all over the place," he said. "I couldn't find my release point. I was getting behind hitters and I just couldn't find it."

    Westbrook was named the opening day starter after C.C. Sabathia strained his side earlier in the spring. Sabathia threw a bullpen session Wednesday and is scheduled to pitch in a minor league game Friday. He is not scheduled to pitch during the regular season until April 17 against Minnesota.

    Westbrook threw more than 60 pitches during his two innings then threw another 30 in the bullpen.

    "We're still building him up," Indians manager Eric Wedge said. "Down there (in the bullpen) we can still control him a little bit."

    Marcus Thames hit a bases-loaded triple in a five-run first inning in which Westbrook walked three and hit a batter. Brandon Inge led off the second for Detroit with a solo home run, his fifth of the spring.

    Jason Johnson, who lost the Tigers' opening day start with two subpar outings in a row, bounced back with five effective innings. He gave up four hits and two runs and retired the last 11 batters he faced.

    Johnson said he had been throwing across his body with his hand on the side of the ball instead of getting his hand on top of the ball, a correction he made on Wednesday.

    "My mechanics are back," Johnson said. "Cluckie (pitching coach Bob Cluck) and I worked on it. I did a lot of dry runs on the mound. Every start (before Wednesday), I had my hand on the side and it flattens out my pitches."

    Tiger manager Alan Trammell said Johnson eased his mind a little bit heading into the season. He had planned on Johnson being the opening day starter but changed his rotation and elevated Jeremy Bonderman to No. 1 in the rotation on Monday with Johnson dropping to third.

    "That's by far his best outing," Trammell said. "He threw more two-seam fastballs. There was success, and groundballs, with the two-seamer."

    Cleveland's Ben Broussard hit a solo homer in the seventh.

    Game notes

    Indians RF Juan Gonzalez missed his third straight game with a sore right hamstring. He was scheduled to play but was scratched from the lineup before Cleveland left Winter Haven. ... The Tigers assigned outfielder Dewayne Wise and catcher Sandy Martinez to their minor league camp leaving 31 players still in camp. Trammell said he hopes to set his opening-day roster on Friday.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press