The Tigers beat the Rays 8-6 in Tampa Bay last night in 11 innings.

Max Scherzer started and went 7 innings, striking out 9, but gave up four runs early. But the Tigers battled back to tie it at 4, led by Ian Kinsler, who went 2 for 5.  J.D. Martinez put the Tigers ahead with a long home run to center in the 8th.  But reliever Joba Chamberlain gave up the lead in the bottom of the 8th.  In the 11th, Victor Martinez, who was 0-5, faced his old nemesis, Grant Balfour and drew a bases-loaded walk.

(Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)

The Tigers managed two more runs in the inning and closer Joe Nathan would need them.   Nathan gave up two hits, a walk, and a run before getting his 26th save. The Royals beat the Rockies to stay 2 games ahead of Detroit in the Central Division.  The Tigers are tied with Seattle for the final Wild Card spot. Rick Porcello goes for his 14th win against the Rays.  Broadcast time is 6:45 on WBCK.

 

Verlander Feels Good…..Dirks, Not so Much

Tigers' pitcher Justin Verlander threw for the first time since he was taken out of a game last week with inflammation in his right shoulder. Verlander said he felt good after spending about 15 minutes throwing before Detroit's series opener against Tampa Bay yesterday.  He's hoping to avoid being put on the disabled list and to pitch in his upcoming slot in the rotation on Saturday in Minnesota.  Meanwhile, outfielder Andy Dirks has had his rehab from back surgery stalled again. Dirks re-injured a hamstring which has halted his return to the Tigers lineup once before.

 

Lions
The Lions will face the Jaguars on Friday night.  The Detroit Lions continue training camp as they get ready for their third preseason game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Ford Field on Friday.  The team is making some changes to their kicking rotation as Nate Freese and Giorgio Tavecchio compete for a roster spot.  Freese has been the place kicker for the first half and Tavecchio in the second, but in Friday's game the two will rotate between kicking opportunities.  The Lions also announced yesterday that they have released cornerback Drayton Florence. They signed the veteran for a second stint with the team last week, but let him go after he did not play well against Oakland.

 

OSU Loses QB

The worst fears of Ohio State football are a reality.  Head coach Urban Meyer confirms starting quarterback Braxton Miller will miss the entire 2014 season.  The two-time Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year reinjured his surgically-repaired right shoulder while throwing a routine pass in practice on Monday.  Redshirt-freshman J.T. Barrett is expected to take Miller's starting spot for the Buckeyes. Miller was recovering from shoulder surgery in February from an injury he suffered during the Orange Bowl.

Hockey Settlement-Moore/Bertuzzi

More than 10 years after an on-ice attack ended Steve Moore's hockey career, a settlement has been reached in a lawsuit against former Red Wing Todd Bertuzzi.  Moore suffered a concussion and three fractured vertebrae during a game 10 ½ years ago in Vancouver when Todd Bertuzzi stalked the Colorado Avalanche forward, grabbed his jersey from behind and delivered a sucker punch before driving him head-first to the ice.  Bertuzzi was alleged to have been seeking retribution for a hit made by Moore on Canucks captain Markus Naslund in an earlier meeting.  Moore never played again.

NBA World Cup

Team USA plays a FIBA Basketball World Cup tune-up tonight against the Dominican Republic at Madison Square Garden.  The U.S. will play another exhibition Friday at MSG against Puerto Rico. The World Cup begins a week from Saturday in Spain.

Coyotes in Playoffs Saturday
The Battle Creek Coyotes host the Wayne County Bengals this Saturday in the playoffs. The game will be at Harper Creek High School at 6:30 PM. The 7-3 Coyotes are the #3 seed in the Crossroad Football League North Conference.  The #6 seed Bengals have a 6-4 record.  The beneficiary for the game will be Virginia Hinman, a local woman battling cancer.   The Coyotes are offering a very special 50/50 prize for the game to help raise money for Virginia: A pair of tickets to the August 28 New York Yankees/Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park. This will be Kalamazoo native and future first-ballot Hall of Famer, Derek Jeter's final game in his home state.