CHICAGO -- Leury Garcia hit a walk-off single and the White Sox scored two runs in the bottom of the ninth as they defeated the Tigers, 4-3, on Saturday night at U.S. Cellular Field in the penultimate game of the season. It was the second walk-off hit of Garcia's career and just his third hit this season.
Garcia followed J.B. Shuck's RBI double in the inning to mount a comeback after the Tigers scored in the top of the frame. Garcia's last walk-off hit came on July 2, 2014, against the Angels. Saturday's gave the White Sox their 12th walk-off of the year.
"It was awesome, I was ready, and I had the opportunity to hit," Garcia said. "I put the ball in play and see what happens. … I'm not playing too much, but I've been working hard and working for the moment."
James McCann knocked an RBI double to right field, but he could not preserve starter Justin Verlander's day. The right-hander allowed five hits and two runs over six innings. In his last start this year, Verlander finished with nine strikeouts and his 14th quality start of the season. He was a part of a Detroit pitching corps that held the White Sox to 2-for-15 with RISP.
"It wasn't easy out there," Verlander said. "It was pretty cold and windy, obviously. The wind had a little bit of an effect on the ball. You didn't know what it was going to do sometimes. But all in all, at the end of the day, not a bad start, and I'm pleased to end the season on a solid note the last month and a half, two months."
Erik Johnson allowed two earned runs and five hits over 6 1/3 innings while striking out four for a no-decision. The rookie ended the season with four quality starts in six outings. His start also ensured the White Sox would finish fourth in the American League Central this season.
"I thought I made a little progress with every start," Johnson said. "I wanted to go deeper in the game with a more proficient pitch count. I thought I accomplished that."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED Miggy ends power outage: Making what is likely to be his final start of the season, Miguel Cabrera picked a good time for his first home run since Aug. 26, sending a sixth-inning drive deep to right-center field and off the top of the fence for a two-run homer. Cabrera's 18th home run of the year was his first extra-base hit of any kind since Sept. 18. More >
Born to run:Adam Eaton wasted little time helping the White Sox get on the board, and he inched closer to putting himself in the record books in the process. The center fielder led off the first with a single and stole second base before scoring on Melky Cabrera's double. It's the 98th run Eaton has scored this year, just shy of becoming the first White Sox player to 100 since Jermaine Dye and Jim Thome surpassed the feat in 2006. Eaton also extended his on-base streak to 22 games with the hit, batting .367 in that span with 15 runs scored.
McCann-do:Alex Avila caught Verlander for the 116th and possibly final time, but with lefty reliever Dan Jennings on and the go-ahead run standing at second base, McCann got the call to hit. After taking a slider for a strike and missing a fastball, the rookie tightened his approach and sent a loft to right field that hit off the fence as Rajai Davis sped home. McCann's double improved him to 3-for-5 with two RBIs as a pinch-hitter.
Nice to see you:Avisail Garcia led off the big ninth inning with a walk, and the right fielder finished 2-for-3 day at the plate, scoring the game-tying run. Garcia is now hitting .348 over his last seven games against Detroit -- his former team.
"Yeah, he'd be in that mix. You start looking at all the things Leury can do, moving around, playing all kinds of positions, switch-hitter, stole a big base tonight too. You can put him in there and do a lot of different things. He's like throwing a little wild card in there. You never know where you're going to put him. He can fill in anywhere, and he can pitch." -- White Sox manager Robin Ventura, on Garcia's role this year as a utility player
"It was a little emotional, I guess. We put a lot of time and effort in the last five or six years. We've become good friends and had a lot of success together. It was definitely a little tough." -- Soon-to-be free agent Avila, on catching Verlander for possibly the last time in his career
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Avila has caught Verlander 116 times in his career, nearly twice as often as any other catcher. Ivan Rodriguez is next on the list at 62.
WHAT'S NEXT Tigers: Five days after enduring a 54-pitch first inning and 71 pitches with five outs recorded, Daniel Norris wraps up Detroit's season when he takes the mound Sunday in a 3:10 p.m. ET start. Norris is expected to have a pitch count around 85-90 and a lineup with some youngsters mixed in, as Cabrera and others get the afternoon off.
White Sox:Frankie Montas takes the mound as the White Sox conclude their season against the Tigers on Sunday from U.S. Cellular Field. Montas makes his second start of the season -- his first also coming against Detroit -- as he hopes to go beyond three innings in an outing for the first time in his Major League career. First pitch is slated for 2:10 p.m. CT.
Greg Garno is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.