Final

Series: Game 3 of 3

NY Mets won 2-1

Game 1: Tuesday, June 28
NY Mets14Final
Detroit3
Game 2: Wednesday, June 29
NY Mets16Final
Detroit9
Game 3: Thursday, June 30
NY Mets2Final
Detroit5

Mets 2

(41-40, 23-20 away)

Tigers 5

(44-38, 26-17 home)

    1:05 PM ET, June 30, 2011

    Comerica Park, Detroit, Michigan 

    123456789 R H E
    NYM 010000010 2 10 1
    DET 01301000 - 5 10 0

    W: J. Verlander (11-3)

    L: M. Pelfrey (4-7)

    S: J. Valverde (19)

    Justin Verlander cools off Mets in Tigers' win

    Associated Press

    DETROIT -- By Justin Verlander's lofty standards, this was a so-so performance.

    It was more than enough to boost a battered Detroit Tigers pitching staff.

    Verlander pitched seven solid innings Thursday to lead the Tigers to a 5-2 win over the big-hitting New York Mets. Detroit had allowed 30 runs in the first two games of the series, but Verlander finished a terrific June by holding New York at bay, preventing a sweep.

    "Each day is a new day in baseball, and that's the beautiful thing about this. They go out and score however many runs in two days with a bunch of hits, but you turn the page," Verlander said. "You've got to know as a starting pitcher, no matter what they've done before, if you make your pitches and execute, good pitching beats good hitting."

    The Mets had scored a team-record 52 runs in their previous four games. Verlander (11-3) held them to one run and seven hits. He finished June with a 6-0 record and a 0.92 ERA and tied CC Sabathia for the major league lead in wins this season.

    Verlander has won his last seven starts, allowing two or fewer runs in each.

    "He's awesome," Mets star Jose Reyes said. "We had him in trouble a couple times, but he always makes a pitch to get out of it. That's why he is one of the best in the game."

    Daniel Murphy and Carlos Beltran homered for New York's only runs. Andy Dirks hit a solo shot for the Tigers.

    Mike Pelfrey (4-7) allowed four earned runs in 4 2/3 innings for the Mets, who start a three-game home series against the New York Yankees on Friday night.

    Detroit needed a good start from Verlander after losing 16-9 the previous night and 14-3 on Tuesday. Every Tiger that pitched Wednesday gave up at least one run -- except utilityman Don Kelly, who took the mound during the ninth that night in an amusing scene.

    Verlander was up to the task. He threw 120 pitches, striking out six and walking two. It wasn't his most dominating effort, but it came at an important time.

    "I didn't pitch well, I battled well," Verlander said. "That's something I pride myself on. I've been on a pretty good run here, had pretty doggone good stuff for a period of time here. You've got to know that that's not going to last an entire season."

    About the only thing Verlander didn't do was get Reyes out. The splendid shortstop reached base in all three plate appearances against the Detroit ace but didn't come around to score.

    Reyes led off the game with a double, and the Mets seemed ready to break loose once again. But Jason Pridie followed by lining into a double play.

    Verlander said the Tigers actually caught a break when they let Reyes stretch his bloop hit into a double because second baseman Ramon Santiago stayed in position to catch Pridie's hit.

    "We kind of got lucky there," Verlander said. "If he's on first base -- that's assuming he hasn't stolen second base yet -- we're playing double-play depth. That ball off the end of the bat is a base hit."

    With the Mets down 5-1, Lucas Duda led off the seventh with a triple, but he was thrown out by left fielder Brennan Boesch when he tagged up and tried to score on a fly ball. Mets manager Terry Collins came out to argue, to no avail.

    "The way he's pitching right now, it's unbelievable," Dirks said. "We just try to play good defense behind him and put up some runs and win the ballgame."

    Joaquin Benoit relieved Verlander and allowed Beltran's 12th homer of the season. The Mets hit no homers in their 16-run outburst Wednesday.

    Jose Valverde finished for his 19th save.

    Pelfrey gave up eight hits and struck out three. He tied a career high with five walks, all in the first three innings. Detroit left the bases loaded in the first, but Austin Jackson hit an RBI single for the Tigers in the second to make it 1-all after Murphy homered in the top half.

    The Tigers loaded the bases with one out in the third, and Alex Avila hit a sacrifice fly. Santiago then hit an RBI single, and center fielder Angel Pagan's throw to third was wild for an error, allowing another run to come home.

    Dirks homered in the fifth to make it 5-1.

    New York right-hander Manny Acosta left in the eighth with a hyperextended wrist on his throwing arm after making an acrobatic play to field a bunt by Santiago.

    Game notes


    Dirks, a rookie, has six homers in 92 at-bats. ... Reyes' double was his 213th, passing Edgardo Alfonzo for fourth place on the franchise's career list.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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    Game Information

    StadiumComerica Park, Detroit, MI
    Attendance31,861 (77.2% full) - % is based on regular season capacity
    Game Time3:15
    Weather81 degrees, sunny
    Wind4 mph
    UmpiresHome Plate - Lance Barrett, First Base - Alfonso Marquez, Second Base - Ed Hickox, Third Base - Ed Rapuano

    Research Notes

    Verlander wasn't as dominant as he's been the rest of the month, but the Mets couldn't muster much in the clutch. The Mets were 2-10 with four strikeouts with men on base, including 0-5 with runners in scoring position.
    NEXT LEVEL: One of the interesting aspects of the Justin Verlander/Cliff Lee debate about who had the better month is that they were remarkable in two totally different ways. While Verlander got nearly 40 percent of his outs on strikeouts, Lee relied heavily on getting batters out with ground balls. Lee also surrended a fewer percentage of fly balls while not allowing a single home run. Verlander gave up three homers in June.
      [+]
    NEXT LEVEL: One of the reasons for Justin Verlander's dominant June? He kept the ball out of play. In play percentage is the number of palls put into play divided by the total number of swings. Verlander's in-play percentage of 32.8 in June led the majors.
      [+]

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