DETROIT – Doug Fister and the Detroit Tigers arent giving an inch in the AL Central.
Fister pitched eight impressive innings, Austin Jackson homered and Jose Iglesias drove in a run in his Detroit debut to lead the Tigers to a 2-1 win over the Chicago White Sox on Friday night.
Detroit has won 10 of 11 – a run thats enabled the Tigers to stay atop the division despite a similar surge by second-place Cleveland.
We cant control anything that other teams do, obviously, Fister said. But were coming in, playing hard and working together, and I think thats whats going to carry us anywhere we go this year.
The White Sox lost their eighth straight game.
Fister (10-5) gave up a run and seven hits, striking out two. Joaquin Benoit pitched a hitless ninth for his 11th save in 11 chances.
Iglesias, acquired from Boston this week in a three-team deal, started at third base in place of Miguel Cabrera, who experienced soreness after running and was scratched pregame.
Iglesias contributed right away with his new team, driving in Prince Fielder in the fourth inning.
Baseball is the same, he said. Great group – and fun to win today.
Hector Santiago (3-7) gave up two runs and six hits in seven innings. He struck out seven and walked one.
That was one of Hectors best games all year, White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. He usually has an inning or two in the middle where he gets out of synch, walks a few guys and gives up some runs. That didnt happen today, and thats an important step forward for him.
Fister threw 88 pitches before being replaced by Benoit for the ninth. He won his fourth straight start – and he has given up four earned runs in 28 innings over that span.
Things were feeling pretty good tonight, Fister said. Im trying to be as consistent as possible from Day One, and things are falling our way right now.
The Indians lost Friday after eight straight wins, so Detroit now leads the division by three games.
Iglesias, 23, was initially going to play second base Friday, but when Cabrera was pulled before the game, he moved over to third.
Iglesias could soon take over at shortstop for Jhonny Peralta, who faces a possible suspension amid the fallout from baseballs investigation into the Biogenesis of America anti-aging clinic. Peralta was in the lineup at shortstop Friday.