Simon out-duels Sabathia in Tigers' 2-1 win over Yankees

Alfredo Simon improves to 3-0 this season


DETROIT – The Tigers picked up a pair of clutch RBI singles in the bottom of the 7th inning to spoil a strong start by CC Sabathia and improve to 11-2 on the season with a 2-1 win.

Alfredo Simon gave Detroit another strong start and picked up win No. 3 on the season.

New York struck first with a leadoff home run by Mark Teixeira in the top of the 2nd inning. Alfredo Simon threw Teixeira an 0-2 splitter that floated to the dish, and the 35-year-old smacked it into the first row of the right field bleachers. It was his fourth home run of the season.

Simon bounced back from the home run by striking out the side in the 2nd.

CC Sabathia cruised through six quick innings, facing the minimum the first time through the order in spite of singles by Ian Kinsler and Jose Iglesias. For Iglesias, a two-out single in the 3rd extended his hitting streak to six games. He was picked off to end the frame.

Kinsler ripped his second single of the night in the 4th, but Miguel Cabrera hit into his second 5-4-3 double play of the game to erase him and end the inning. In the bottom of the 6th, James McCann hit into the team's third 5-4-3 double play to erase a leadoff walk from Nick Castellanos.

CC Sabathia faced the minimum through six innings with just 69 pitches. The Tigers had only three singles and a walk.

In the bottom of the 7th, Rajai Davis led off with a single and moved to second base on a flyout to left field by Kinsler, which ended up being a key play as he avoided Cabrera's third double play of the night on an ensuing ground ball to shortstop.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi intentionally walked Victor Martinez with first base open, but J.D. Martinez ripped an RBI single into left field to tie the game.

In the following at-bat, Yoenis Cespedes drove Victor Martinez home with a single up the middle, his first career hit against Sabathia. J.D. Martinez was thrown out between 2nd and 3rd on the play, which may have saved Victor from being thrown out at the plate from center field.

Simon stayed in the game for the top of the 8th and gave up a leadoff single to Chase Headley. Stephen Drew bunted him over to second base, and Didi Gregorius singled him to third. That signaled the end for the Tigers' starter.

Brad Ausmus pulled Simon after 7.1 innings. He allowed seven hits and just one run while striking out seven.

Joba Chamberlain came in and made a huge pitch to Jacoby Ellsbury, getting the Yankees' leadoff man to ground into a 4-6-3 double play on a bullet to Kinsler.

Castellanos led off the bottom of the 8th with a single to left field, extending his hitting streak to eight games. His batting average is up to .295 after a very slow start.

Andrew Romine moved up to second base on a James McCann sacrifice bunt after pinch running for Castellanos. Iglesias drew a one-out walk, but Sabathia retired Davis and Kinsler to get through eight strong innings.

That sent closer Joakim Soria to the mound with a slim 2-1 lead against the heart of the Yankees' order. Soria retired Brett Gardner on a ground ball to Kinsler and Alex Rodriguez and Teixeira on fly balls to Davis.

Soria is now a perfect 5/5 on save opportunities this season.

Sabathia, who took the loss, recorded the AL's first complete game of the season with eight two-run innings.

New York will get a chance to bounce back against Kyle Lobstein Tuesday in the second of this four-game series.