DETROIT — Tigers Manager Jim Leyland knew he had to do something about his offense. So he shifted his lineup around and it paid off handsomely.
The Tigers scored five times in the second inning and beat the Boston Red Sox 7-3 in Game 4 of the ALCS to even the best-of-seven series at two games apiece.
Austin Jackson was pulled out of the lead-off spot and dropped to eighth in the Tigers batting order for tonight, but was the guy who started the scoring. Jackson took four straight pitches out of the strike zone from Boston starter Jake Peavy to draw a bases-loaded walk scoring Victor Martinez in the second inning.
With Jackson down in the eighth spot, everyone else in the lineup moved up one spot. So Torii Hunter was the new Tigers top-of-the-order guy and he broke the second inning open with a double down the third base line that scored two making it 4-0 Detroit. Miguel Cabrera knocked in Hunter in the very next at-bat to put the Tigers up 5-0.
Both Jackson and Cabrera had RBI singles in the bottom of the 4th to give the Tigers a 7-0 lead.
Doug Fister got the start and threw six innings, giving up just one run on eight hits. He struck out seven and walked just one Red Sox hitter. Drew Smyly shined in relief, pitching one-and-two-thirds scoreless innings after Phil Coke and Al Alburquerque combined to give up one run. Joaquin Benoit gave up one run in the ninth, but finished the game to give the Tigers the 7-3 win.
Game 5 is set for Thursday night at Comerica Park. The pitching matchup will be a rematch of Game 1, Anibal Sanchez vs. Jon Lester. First pitch is scheduled for 8:07 p.m.