Tigers ride four-run sixth to comeback victory

Tigers ride four-run sixth to comeback victory

Tigers ride four-run sixth to comeback victory
CHICAGO -- No lead seems insurmountable for a Detroit offense that's scored at least three runs in an inning to tie or take the lead late in each of its last three games.

Detroit's comeback Wednesday night in an 8-4 victory marked redemption for shortstop Jhonny Peralta, whose two errors on close calls Tuesday night ended the Tigers' hopes for a come-from-behind attempt.

Peralta went 3-for-4 and finished a home run short of the cycle, knocking in two runs on a game-tying double as part of a four-run sixth inning for the Tigers, who trailed 4-1 entering the frame.

"He's a professional," right fielder Brennan Boesch said of Peralta. "He put it behind him. We even talked about it, yesterday was yesterday, and he came out and had a huge game for us."

Peralta's day at the plate could only be surpassed by Boesch's stellar hitting performance. The right fielder finished 4-for-5 with a home run and two RBIs, increasing his hitting streak to six games.

  • 142 wins
  • 110 wins
Boesch is hitting .252, after finishing May with a .238 batting average. He already has three multihit games in June, after just five in all of May. "There's ups and downs in a season," Boesch said. "My start happened to not be the way I wanted, but I never panicked and worked hard and I'm continuing to work hard. It's a long season. You continue to keep going."

Detroit couldn't get much going off Cubs starter Matt Garza in the early innings. Boesch's single in the sixth marked Detroit's first hit since his single in the third. 

The sixth-inning single sparked the four-run rally for the Tigers, after Miguel Cabrera followed with a grounder that was booted by Cubs third baseman Joe Mather.

"I just missed it," Mather said. "I think it was the turning point in the game. Garza got out of trouble right there -- he was in a little bit of trouble and he got out of it. I feel bad that's what started it all."

An RBI single by Delmon Young scored Boesch and put Detroit's second run on the board. Following Peralta's game-tying double, catcher Gerald Laird then laid down a bunt single down the third-base line.

"That's playing the game the way you're supposed to play the game," Leyland said. "You take something, you see it, it's available, you take it. That was huge."

Peralta scored the go-ahead run when second baseman Ramon Santiago sent a scorching grounder back to Cubs starter Matt Garza, whose only play was to first base.

"We're not giving up," Boesch said. "We're scratching and clawing for every win. That builds a lot of character in this clubhouse."

Boesch added a solo home run in the seventh on an 0-2 pitch, the first time he'd hit a homer on that count in his career. He notched his fourth hit of the game with an RBI single in the eighth.

Boesch also contributed defensively, robbing the Cubs' David DeJesus of extra bases with a diving snag to his right in the seventh.

Center fielder Austin Jackson added the final defensive gem with a leaping catch against the ivy in left-center field with two runners on in the ninth to end the game.

"You've just got to get used to that," Leyland said. "He's been doing that for a few years since we've had him now."

Detroit pitcher Rick Porcello snapped a six-start winless skid by recording his first win (4-4) since May 6 in his first career start at Wrigley Field.

Porcello allowed nine hits, surrendering two runs in both the second and fifth innings.

"The second inning, left a couple pitches up, which they hit hard," Porcello said. "After that, I was able to settle back down."

The bullpen backed him up with four scoreless frames from relievers Brayan Villareal, Joaquin Benoit and Jose Valverde. Villareal and Benoit allowed no hits and struck out a combined four batters.

Detroit's bullpen has allowed just 19 earned runs in its past 76 innings since May 17.

"I think Benoit's about as good as it gets in that setup role," Leyland said. "He seems to get lost in the shuffle all the time. Nobody ever seems to mention him, but I think quietly he's one of the best in the business at what he does."

If not for late-inning comebacks, the Tigers would have dropped their series against the Reds and would have already lost the series against the Cubs. Instead, Detroit could capture both road series with a win Thursday afternoon.

"It was a good win for us," Leyland said. "Tomorrow's a big game. We won the series in Cincinnati, now we've got to work real hard to try to win the series tomorrow."

Rowan Kavner is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.