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FINAL: TIGERS 6, BRAVES 2

Miguel Cabrera hit two home runs and the Tigers got nearly seven innings of scoreless baseball from Daniel Norris en route to a 6-2 win in a crucial game against the Atlanta Braves.

The Tigers hit four long balls tonight, getting a leadoff shot from Ian Kinsler and a solo shot from Justin Upton in the seventh.

Norris pitched 6.2 innings of scoreless baseball before surrendering a solo home run to the pinch-hitting Brandon Snyder. Norris through 114 pitches, giving up one run on five hits while walking two.

In the ninth, Francisco Rodriguez got the call out of the bullpen for the first time in six days. He struck out the side to end the game.

In the chase for the American League wild card, the Yankees proved to be little help to the Tigers, losing to Baltimore in New York, 8-1. The Tigers did, however, get help from David Ortiz and the Boston Red Sox, who beat the Toronto Blue Jays, 5-3, in Boston.

The Tigers now trail Toronto by a half game for the second wild card spot. Baltimore moves into that first spot with tonight's win and sits a game and a half ahead of the Tigers.

Jordan Zimmermann makes a big start for the Tigers tomorrow in Atlanta.

Top 9th: Tigers 6, Braves 2

The Tigers were set down in order in the ninth by Atlanta reliever John Gant.

J.D. Martinez struck out swinging, Justin Upton grounded out to shortstop and Nick Castellanos struck out swinging to end the frame.

Out of town scoreboard (games of interest to Tigers)

Boston 5, Toronto 3 (8th)

Baltimore 8, New York 1 (F)

Seattle 2, Oakland 0 (2nd)

Bottom 8th: Tigers 6, Braves 1

Bruce Rondon got the call out of the bullpen for the eighth and got the first two outs with no issue. However, Matt Kemp was able to tag him for a long solo home run, his 35th of the year, to cut the Tigers lead to 6-2. Nick Markakis was then hit by a pitch, but Rondon got out of trouble by getting Tyler Flowers to fly out to left field.

Adonis Garcia struck out swinging and Freddie Freeman flew out to center field to start the inning.

Out of town scoreboard (games of interest to Tigers)

Boston 5, Toronto 3 (8th)

Baltimore 8, New York 1 (9th)

Top 8th: Tigers 6, Braves 1

Ian Kinsler notched a one-out single to left field, but Cameron Maybin flew out to center field and Miguel Cabrera popped out into shallow right field to end the inning.

Tyrell Jenkins started the inning on the mound for the Braves but appeared to hurt himself on the first pitch to Cabrera. John Gant came on to finish that at-bat.

Erick Aybar came on to pinch-hit, flying out to center field to leadoff the inning.

Bottom 7th: Tigers 6, Braves 1

Brandon Snyder ruined Daniel Norris' good time, crushing a solo home run to center field with the Tigers' young pitcher one out from completing seven shutout innings and cutting the Tigers lead to 6-1.

Dansby Swanson became Norris' fifth consecutive strikeout and eighth of the night, and Daniel Castro popped out to the mound for the first two outs of the frame.

Norris was lifted after the home run having thrown 114 pitches. He gave up the one run, five hits and two walks through 6.2 innings. It was an outstanding performance from a guy making the biggest start of his career.

Kyle Ryan got the call out of the bullpen and got Ender Inciarte to ground out back to the mound to end the frame.

Top 7th: Tigers 6, Braves 0

Justin Upton hit his 30th home run of the season, putting the Tigers up 6-0 with a leadoff shot in the top of the seventh. The long ball is Upton's 12th in September. He has been on fire since mid-August.

Nick Castellanos flew out to right field, James McCann did the same and Jose Iglesias struck out swinging to end the inning.

Bottom 6th: Tigers 5, Braves 0

Despite his solid outing tonight, Daniel Norris hadn't recorded a 1-2-3 inning since the opening frame. Well, that run is over, as Norris dialed it up a notch in what may be his last inning and struck out the side.

Matt Kemp became Norris' fifth strikeout victim of the night, Nick Markakis his sixth and Tyler Flowers his seventh.

It's possible, at 97 pitches, that Norris is done for the night. He appears strong right now, however, and Brad Ausmus could choose to send him out on a short leash for the seventh.

Out of town scoreboard (games of interest to Tigers)

Baltimore 8, New York 1 (8th)

Toronto 3, Boston 1 (6th)

Top 6th: Tigers 5, Braves 0

Cameron Maybin was hit by a Brandon Cunniff pitch in the left hand to give the Tigers a one-out baserunner. Maybin looked to be in pain, but he stayed in the game. The Tigers couldn't get to Cunniff, though, as Miguel Cabrera flew out to right field and J.D. Martinez struck out looking to end the frame.

Bottom 5th: Tigers 5, Braves 0

Adonis Garcia smashed a two-out, infield single off of Daniel Norris' right arm. After getting checked out by the training staff, Norris stayed in the game and got Freddie Freeman to strike out swinging.

Pinch-hitting Chase d'Arnaud grounded out to shortstop and Ender Inciarte grounded out to third to leadoff the inning.

Norris has thrown 84 pitches through five. There's no reason he shouldn't be back out for the sixth.

Out of town scoreboard (games of interest to Tigers)

Toronto 3, Boston 1 (5th)

Baltimore 8, New York 1 (6th)

Top 5th: Tigers 5, Braves 0

Miguel Cabrera notched a leadoff single through the left side of the infield, and after J.D. Martinez struck out swinging, Justin Upton stroked a base hit through the right side of the infield. With two men on, Nick Castellanos flew out to shallow right field, but James McCann picked his teammates up, coming through with an RBI single through the left side of the infield and putting the Tigers up 5-0.

That was enough to chase Braves pitcher Matt Wisler from the game. Atlanta brought in Joel De La Cruz with men on first and second. He walked Jose Iglesias to load the bases for Daniel Norris, who grounded out to second to end the threat.

Bottom 4th: Tigers 4, Braves 0

Daniel Norris issued a two-out walk to Dansby Swanson, but he was able to get out of the inning with little resistance by getting Daniel Castro to fly out to center field.

Nick Markakis became Norris' third strikeout victim of the night and Tyler Flowers grounded out to shortstop to start the inning.

Norris has thrown 67 pitches through the first four frames. He should be good to get through six innings tonight.

In games of particular interest to the Tigers:

Orioles 8, Yankees 1 (5th)

Red Sox 1, Blue Jays 0 (4th)

Note: The Tigers entered today a game and a half behind both Baltimore and Toronto.

Top 4th: Tigers 4, Braves 0

Matt Wisler was able to set the Tigers down in order for the first time tonight.

Daniel Norris lined out to second, Ian Kinsler grounded out to shortstop and Cameron Maybin grounded out to third to end the inning.

With two home runs tonight, Miguel Cabrera must have been licking his chops hoping Maybin would get on base. He'll have to wait his turn, though, and leadoff the fifth.

Bottom 3rd: Tigers 4, Braves 0

Braves pitcher Matt Wisler was able to draw a leadoff walk from Daniel Norris, and after the Tigers' youngster got two quick outs, Freddie Freeman was able to earn a free pass of his own. Norris was able to get out of trouble, though, as Matt Kemp flew out to deep right center to end the inning.

Norris has worked a bit over the last two innings. His pitch count is up to 54.

Top 3rd: Tigers 4, Braves 0

Matt Wisler has seen enough of Miguel Cabrera to last him a lifetime. After the Tigers' best hitter hit a two-run bomb in the first inning off of Wisler, the big man played long ball again to center field with a solo shot to leadoff the third inning and give the Tigers a 4-0 lead.

After J.D. Martinez flew out to center field, Justin Upton was able to draw a one-out walk and Nick Castellanos singled to left field. The Tigers weren't able to do anymore damage, however, as James McCann flied out to shallow left field and Jose Iglesias grounded out to third to end the inning.

Bottom 2nd: Tigers 3, Braves 0

Tyler Flowers notched a two-out single to right field and Dansby Swanson stroked a base hit to center field to put two men on base for Atlanta. Daniel Norris stayed composed, getting Daniel Castro to ground out to first to end the inning.

The young Tigers' hurler had retired the first five hitters he faced tonight.

Matt Kemp flew out to center field and Nick Markakis popped out to shortstop to start the frame.

Top 2nd: Tigers 3, Braves 0

Daniel Norris drew a one-out walk from Matt Wisler, but Ian Kinsler struck out swinging and Cameron Maybin grounded out to shortstop to end the inning.

Jose Iglesias grounded out to third to leadoff the inning.

Bottom 1st: Tigers 3, Braves 0

Daniel Norris came out in the first inning looking like a man on a mission, throwing heat and looking in control of all of his pitches as he set Atlanta down in order.

Ender Inciarte grounded out to first, Adonis Garcia struck out swinging and Freddie Freeman did the same.

Top 1st: Tigers 3, Braves 0

Ian Kinsler missed a home run on the first pitch of the game by inches, hitting it just outside the foul pole in left field. Well, four pitches later, Kinsler got another fastball he liked and kept this one fair for a solo home run to leadoff the game, putting the Tigers up 1-0.

With his 28th long ball of the season, Kinsler has tied Lou Whitaker for the most home runs in a season by a Tigers second baseman.

After Cameron Maybin singled to right field, Miguel Cabrera did his best Ian Kinsler impression, hitting a ball deep and gone to center field to give the Tigers a 3-0 lead.

Braves pitcher Matt Wisler was finally able to get his first out of the night when J.D. Martinez grounded out to shortstop.

The hit parade didn't stop, however, as Justin Upton singled down the right field line. The Tigers couldn't get the fourth run of the inning home, though. Nick Castellanos struck out swinging and James McCann popped out to second to end the inning.

TIGERS LINEUP

1. Ian Kinsler, 2B

2. Cameron Maybin, CF

3. Miguel Cabrera, 1B

4. J.D. Martinez, RF

5. Justin Upton, LF

6. Nick Castellanos, 3B

7. James McCann, C

8. Jose Iglesias, SS

9. Daniel Norris, P

BRAVES LINEUP

1. Ender Inciarte, CF

2. Adonis Garcia, 3B

3. Freddie Freeman, 1B

4. Matt Kemp, LF

5. Nick Markakis, RF

6. Tyler Flowers, C

7. Dansby Swanson, SS

8. Daniel Castro, 2B

9. Matt Wisler, P

TIGERS VS. BRAVES

What: First of a three-game series

When: Friday, 7:35 p.m.

Where: Turner Field, Atlanta

Pitching matchup:  LHP Daniel Norris (3-2, 3.59) vs. RHP Matt Wisler (7-12, 4.86)

Local TV: Fox Sports Detroit

Internet streaming: MLB.TV (Blacked out in Detroit market)

Local radio: 97.1 FM

Satellite radio: Sirius (Internet 849)

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