Tigers show Red Sox who's boss over weekend

Tigers show Red Sox who's boss over weekend
May 19, 2014, 1:30 am
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BOSTON - The Red Sox (20–23) wouldn't say flat out that the Tigers (27-12) were the best team they've played this season, but they didn't have to.

The numbers did the talking for them.

This series was thought to be a measuring stick for a Sox team slow out of the gates. If that's what it was, they didn't measure up.

Whether it was the Tigers pitching staff absolutely shutting down the Sox offense, or the Tigers batters taking advantage of every misplaced ball that reached the plate, the Tigers proved that they - not the defending World Series Champion Red Sox - are the team to beat in the AL this season, at least right now.

The Red Sox mustered up a measly 16 hits all series against the Tigers. On Sunday night alone, the Tigers had 15 hits.

Ian Kinsler, Torii Hunter, Miguel Cabrera, and Victor Martinez combined to hit .415 (22-for-53) with 3 home runs and 10 RBI over the three-game series.

The Red Sox as a team scored just three runs.

It was as one-sided as it sounds.

"They're very good," John Farrell said of the Tigers. "There doesn't appear to be a weak link. Their bullpen pitched outstanding. Their defense overall played very well. Starting rotation was strong. As well as the top half of that lineup is swinging the bat right now, they're a very good team."

Cabrera extended his hitting streak to 9 games and has at least 1 RBI in 7 of his last 8 games with 14 total RBI in that span. Martinez' homer was his 10th of the season, and he's now hitting .383 in May. The Tigers pitching staff has a team ERA of 3.19, second-best in the league behind the A's (2.92).

This is the 5th series sweep of the season for the Tigers, and their 11th straight win on the road. They are now 14-4 on the road this season, the best in the AL.

Meanwhile, the Red Sox have just one series sweep to their name, and drop to 10-14 at home (10-9 on the road).

"They played well," Grady Sizemore said. "They played really good. Obviously they're a good team. These guys have been playing well for a long time now, so it's a good team."

But while the Tigers may be the cream of the crop right now - with the Sox looking like crap - don't think the Sox are going to sit on their thumbs and waste the season away. It was a rough weekend against a really good baseball team. If anything, it could have been the wakeup call they needed to know they've simply got to be better if they want to be considered a legitimate contender this season.

"Listen, everybody in here is frustrated, we get frustrated when we lose," Jake Peavy said. "Detroit is as good as any team in baseball. You have to play flawless baseball to beat them and obviously we didn't do that in any game and that's frustrating. The guys in here certainly aren't anything other than frustrated. We believe that we have the talent and we're going to keep working. [Monday's] a day off and we can kind of get our breath back and get going against Toronto. But it's still a lot of ball left to be played. There's nothing more than frustration. The biggest thing you've got to do is channel that frustration in the right way and work hard to come out of it."