Moya pokes RBI single after late Martinez scratch

Chris McCosky
The Detroit News
Tigers designated hitter Steven Moya singles to score Miguel Cabrera in the seventh inning to make it  6-1 Tigers.

Detroit – Tigers manager Brad Ausmus talked before Wednesday’s game about wanting and needing to get Steven Moya some at-bats. Moya, after going 6-for-15 in Baltimore, hadn't played in the series against the Twins.

“That’s a little bit of the concern with keeping Moya here,” Ausmus said. “We want to get him at-bats. But also, we’ve been hoping (Justin) Upton and J.D. (Martinez) swing the bat the way you want them to and expect them to over the long haul.

“Both hit the ball well (Tuesday) and J.D. has hit it well for the last few days. So you are boxed in a corner in terms of using Moya.”

That changed about 90 minutes before game time.

The Tigers scratched designated hitter Victor Martinez from the lineup and inserted Moya. It was a way to get Moya at least four at-bats and give Martinez, who is on a 0-for-12 skid, two days off.

Victor Martinez sat Wednesday and the team has an off-day Thursday.

Nick Castellanos was moved up to cleanup spot in the order, followed by Upton and then Moya in the sixth hole.

Moya contributed an RBI single in four at-bats in the Tigers' victory.

Cracking wise

Ausmus, serving a one-game suspension for his on-field outburst Monday, watched the Tigers’ 7-2 win over the Twins in Justin Verlander’s Comerica Park suite Tuesday night.

“I did it as a player, too,” he said. “I sat in the stands at Yankee Stadium watching the Tigers. I sat with my parents, my sister and my niece.”

He said found out about the suspension after batting practice and wasn’t a bit surprised.

“I wasn’t worried about anything,” he said. “I have complete trust in Geno.”

Gene Lamont managed the game, which set up perhaps the line of the year from Ausmus.

“The only thing I checked on Twitter was to see if there was a hashtag ‘FireLamont’ yet,” he said. “There was.”

Greene rehab

Right-hander Shane Greene (blister) will make a rehab start on Friday with Class A West Michigan at Fort Wayne.

Greene has been out since April 29, when a blister split open the middle finger on his throwing hand.

Ausmus said they will re-evaluate after Friday, but it is likely Greene would need more than one rehab start before being cleared to return to the Tigers.