Prince Fielder waved his arms franticly, gleefully calling off his teammates before catching the final out.
From the moment Fielder signed his great deal in January, an entire city had been waiting for a moment like this.
Max Scherzer capped a stupendous stretch for Detroit’s starting rotation, and the Tigers advanced to the World Series for the 2nd time in 7 years by beating the New York Yankees 8-1 for a 4-game sweep of the American League championship series.
Miguel Cabrera and Jhonny Peralta hit 2-run homers in a 4-run 4th inning against CC Sabathia, who was unable to prevent the Yankees from getting swept in a postseason series for the 1st time in 32 years.
Scherzer took a no-hit bid into the 6th against a New York starting lineup that was again without Alex Rodriguez, who flied out with 2 on in the 6th as a pinch hitter. Basketball betting lines
Austin Jackson added a solo shot in the 7th for Detroit, and Peralta hit another homer an inning later.
The game ended with Fielder, Detroit’s $214 million acquisition, catching Jayson Nix’s popup. The Tigers spilled onto the field for a celebration that began near 2nd base and eventually moved nearer to the 3rd-base line.
General manager Dave Dombrowski hugged manager Jim Leyland – who is in the last year of his agreement – while owner Mike Ilitch rubbed Leyland’s right shoulder.
”I’ve got a great bunch,” Ilitch declared. ”We don’t have one hot dog in the bunch. They’re all great guys. … The Tigers are something special.”
Detroit won its 11th American League pennant and 1st since 2006. The Tigers have 5 days off before the World Series starts Wednesday at defending champ St. Louis or 2010 winner San Francisco.
After scoring in just 3 of 39 innings in the series, N.Y heads home to face upsetting questions on its future following a postseason of awful hitting, benched stars and vets showing the wear and tear of age. Rodriguez, the $275 million 3rd baseman, was out of the starting lineup for the 3rd time in the playoffs. Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera could only watch following season-ending injuries.
The Yankees hit .188 in the postseason – a record low for a team that played at least 7 games – and .157 in the LCS. N.Y went quietly in the 9th inning, with the Comerica Park crowd singing ”Sweep!” while the last 3 batters made out in order.
Detroit outhit New York 16-2 in the finale and 46-22 in the series. The Tigers’ starters are 4-1 with a 1.02 ERA in this postseason.
Without a World Series title since 1984, Detroit lost to Texas in last year’s ALCS, lost slugger Victor Martinez to a season-ending injury in the January and quickly replaced offense by signing Fielder. The fun of that bold acquisition subsided a bit when the Tigers struggled to a 26-32 start in the American League Central, but they overtook the White Sox in the last 10 days of the regular season and won the division with an 88-74 record, matching the Cardinals for the fewest wins among the 10 playoff teams.