After a sluggish start, Jordan Zimmermann found his groove, but it wasn’t enough as the Diamondbacks beat the Tigers 2-1 on Wednesday night at Comerica.
Arizona earned the two-game road sweep.
It looked to be a long day for Zimmermann after he allowed two first-inning runs and five hits through the first two frames, but he figured things out from the third inning on. However, those two early runs were enough for the Diamondbacks to top the Tigers (30-34).
Zimmermann finished his third straight quality start with eight full innings, striking out six batters and giving up two runs. He allowed just one hit and walked no one after the second inning.
The Diamondbacks (41-26) also got a quality start from Taijuan Walker. He went five full innings, allowing one earned run and six hits, striking out six Tigers and recording the win.
Miguel Cabrera was the only Tiger to record more than one hit, finishing 2-for-4. The Tigers struck out 11 times.
David Peralta and Brandon Drury drove in the Diamondbacks’ only runs while former Tiger Fernando Rodney recorded his second save in as many nights and 18th of the year.
The Tigers will start a four-game series with the Rays on Thursday at 7:10. Justin Verlander (4-4, 4.68 ERA) will take the mound for the Tigers and Alex Cobb (5-5, 4.29) will go for the Rays.
Bottom 9th: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 1
Former Tiger Fernando Rodney entered the game, searching for his second save in as many nights versus his old club.
Justin Upton led things off with a strikeout looking. Nick Castellanos thought about swinging at a close pitch, but held up and it was a called strike three anyways. Andrew Romine was the Tigers' last hope, but he also struck out.
Top 9th: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 1
Shane Greene entered the game in relief of the stater, Jordan Zimmermann.
David Peralta struck out swinging so violently to begin the top of the ninth that he fell to his knees. Paul Goldschmidt walked with one out. Jose Iglesias then made a highlight sliding stop and double play turn on a Jake Lamb grounder to the middle of the infield to end the inning.
Bottom 8th: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 1
The Diamondbacks made some defensive switches as Rey Fuentes entered the game for Chris Herrmann. He took over center field and Gregor Blanco moved from center to left. Randall Delgado remained in the game for the third straight inning.
Alex Avila put a charge into a fly ball to deep left, but was caught right in front of the warning track. Miguel Cabrera recorded his second hit of the contest with a single to left.
Victor Martinez looked to avenge his 0-for-3 start to the game, but grounded weakly to the left side of the infield, resulting in a fielder's choice as Cabrera was forced out at second.
J.D. Martinez ended the inning with a swinging strike three.
Top 8th: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 1
Jordan Zimmermann took the mound once again to begin the eighth.
After falling behind, he got Chris Iannetta to strike out looking. Nick Ahmed followed that up by popping out to short. Gregor Blanco ended the inning with a groundout to short.
Bottom 7th: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 1
The Tigers' offense remained tame in the seventh.
Jose Iglesias and Andrew Romine both grounded out to start the inning. Ian Kinsler flew out to right to end the inning.
Top 7th: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 1
Jake Lamb ended Jordan Zimmermann's 14 straight retired batters streak with a single to left. He would advance no further.
Chris Owings then popped out to first, Brandon Drury lined out to center and Chris Herrmann grounded out to second, respectively.
Bottom 6th: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 1
Randall Delgado relieved Taijuan Walker to begin the sixth.
Out No. 1 didn't take long as J.D. Martinez flew out to right on one pitch. Justin Upton lined out to right. Nick Castellanos then struck out swinging.
Top 6th: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 1
Looking to remain hot, Jordan Zimmermann took the mound with 11 straight batters retired in the sixth.
Gregor Blanco popped up to short on two pitches for the first out, David Peralta grounded to third for the second out and Paul Goldschmidt ended the inning by striking out swinging.
Bottom 5th: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 1
The Tigers nearly took the lead, but silence from the cleanup spot doomed them.
Jose Iglesias remained hot, singling to center to kick off the home half of the fifth. Ian Kinsler then flew out to center. Alex Avila grounded into a fielder's choice as Iglesias was forced out at second and he was safe at first.
Miguel Cabrera doubled on a line drive to center, putting two runners in scoring position for the cleanup hitter. Unfortunately, Victor Martinez couldn't drive in either run, flying out to left to end the fifth.
Top 5th: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 1
Jordan Zimmermann got back to work, mowing down Diamondbacks once again in the fifth.
Chris Herrmann grounded out to first to start the fifth. Chris Iannetta struck out swinging and Zimmermann began to pick up serious steam. Nick Ahmed flew out to right field for another 1-2-3 inning.
Bottom 4th: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 1
The Tigers threatened to score for the second straight inning, but couldn't plate a run.
For the second time early on, Victor Martinez grounded out to second. J.D. Martinez singled to left field, starting another threat. Justin Upton followed that up with a single to right. Nick Castellanos flew out to center and J.D. moved up to third.
With runners on the corners and two outs, Andrew Romine struck out swinging.
Top 4th: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 1
Jordan Zimmermann started to find his groove in the fourth.
Jake Lamb lined out, Chris Owings struck out swinging and Brandon Drury grounded out, respectively, to end the inning.
Bottom 3rd: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 1
The Tigers looked to capitalize on a 1-2-3 inning from the Diamondbacks in the top of the third.
Ian Kinsler recorded the Tigers' first hit, lining a two-out double to left field. Alex Avila drove him in with a single to left.
Andrew Romine became the fourth straight strikeout, though, to start the home half of the third. Jose Iglesias then grounded out to first. Miguel Cabrera grounded out to first to end the inning.
Top 3rd: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 0
The top of the Diamondbacks' order began the third and Jordan Zimmermann fared much better this time around.
Gregor Blanco flew out to left field, David Peralta grounded out to short and Paul Goldschmidt struck out looking to end the third.
Bottom 2nd: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 0
The Tigers' offense looked helpless through two innings.
J.D. Martinez kicked things off with a swinging strikeout. Justin Upton followed suit with a strikeout looking. Nick Castellanos couldn't change the trend, striking out as well to end the second.
Top 2nd: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 0
Jordan Zimmermann had a much better second inning.
Chris Herrmann singled to center for the Diamondbacks' fifth hit. Chris Iannetta kept Justin Upton busy, lining out to left field. Zimmermann got a much-needed double play from Nick Ahmed to end the inning.
Bottom 1st: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 0
Taijuan Walker got the start for the Diamondbacks.
Ian Kinsler couldn't start the game off effectively, flying out to center. Alex Avila then gave the Tigers their first baserunner of the game, walking on five pitches.
Walker balked, advancing Avila to second with one out. Miguel Cabrera couldn't drive him in, though, as he struck out swinging. Victor Martinez then grounded out harmlessly to second, ending the threat.
Top 1st: Diamondbacks 2, Tigers 0
Jordan Zimmermann took the mound, looking to make it back-to-back quality starts. He didn't get off to the best start.
A single to left turned into a three-bagger for Gregor Blanco after a fielding error by Justin Upton in left. David Peralta played Blanco with a sacrifice fly to left field. Paul Goldschmidt kept the momentum going, singling on a sharp grounder to left field.
Jake Lamb then struck out looking, but the next batter, Chris Owings, doubled down the left field line. Brandon Drury hit a hard single to left, scoring Goldschmidt, but Owings was thrown out at the plate to end the lengthy inning.
The Tigers will turn to Jordan Zimmermann to try to help them snap out of their most recent funk.
Zimmermann takes the mound Wednesday night as the Tigers play host to the Arizona Diamondbacks in the finale of a two-game series at Comerica Park. First pitch is at 7:10 p.m.
The Tigers have lost five of their last seven.
Zimmermann's numbers on the season remain ugly — 5.72 ERA, 1.55 WHIP, and opponents are hitting .305 off of him — but things appear to be looking up for the right-hander. In his two June starts, Zimmermann has allowed just three earned runs in 12 innings (2.25 ERA). The Tigers have split those games.
The Tigers face Diamondbacks right-hander Taijuan Walker, making his first start since a stint on the disabled list because of a blister that formed in mid-May. Walker is 4-3 with a 3.46 ERA.
DIAMONDBACKS AT TIGERS
First pitch: 7:10 p.m. Wednesday, Comerica Park, Detroit
TV/radio: Fox Sports Detroit/97.1 FM
Records: The Tigers are 30-33, third place in the American League Central Division, four games behind the Minnesota Twins. The Diamondbacks are 40-26, third place in the National League West, half-game behind the Los Angeles Dodgers.
1. Gregor Blanco, CF
2. David Peralta, DH
3. Paul Goldschmidt, 1B
4. Jake Lamb, 3B
5. Chris Owings, RF
6. Brandon Drury, 2B
7. Chris Herrmann, LF
8. Chris Iannetta, C
9. Nick Ahmed, SS
SP: Taijuan Walker, RHP
1. Ian Kinsler, 2B
2. Alex Avila, C
3. Miguel Cabrera, 1B
4. Victor Martinez, DH
5. J.D. Martinez, RF
6. Justin Upton, LF
7. Nick Castellanos, 3B
8. Andrew Romine, CF
9. Jose Iglesias, SS
SP: Jordan Zimmermann, RHP