DETROIT – Coming into this season, the Tigers had started 9-1 twice since World War I: in 1968 and 1984, the years of Detroit’s last two World Series titles.
Detroit has won nine of its first 10 games once again following Friday’s 2-1 victory over the Chicago White Sox, which ended on Jose Iglesias’ ninth-inning single.
“I don’t put a lot of stock in yesterday, but they also can’t take these wins away from us,” Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said.
Detroit’s rally was aided by a controversial call White Sox manager Robin Ventura didn’t challenge because he made his decision too late.
Nick Castellanos led off the ninth with a sinking liner to right off Zach Duke (1-1) that Melky Cabrera couldn’t grab cleanly. Castellanos stretched the hit into a double, and while replays appeared to show shortstop Alexei Ramirez tagging him on a toe, second-base umpire Brian O’Nora ruled called the runner safe.
“It was a bang-bang play, and I couldn’t really feel if he touched me or not,” Castellanos said. “A lot of umpires, if the ball beats you there, they take it for granted and call you out. I was happy that didn’t happen.”
Ramirez signaled to the Chicago dugout, and Ventura came out to discuss the play with the umpires. He did not immediately ask for a replay review.
“Brian said he missed him,” Ventura explained. “I wish I could have watched the play.”
A second-inning home run by former Tiger Avisail Garcia put Chicago ahead. Yoenis Cespedes homered in the fourth, a drive that cleared the first section of seats in left.
David Price pitched four-hit ball over eight innings with nine strikeouts and two walks.
Chicago starter Jeff Samardzija gave up one run and eight hits in eight innings, striking out seven.