By Dave Hart
Braves 5, Tigers 3 – The Tigers fell just short of keeping control of their playoff destiny, after losing to the Atlanta Braves on Saturday night.
Detroit now must win on Sunday and hope that either the Baltimore Orioles or Toronto Blue Jays lose to allow Monday’s potential makeup game with Cleveland to take place for a chance to play a tiebreaking game on Tuesday for a spot in the American League Wild Card game.
The Tigers had their chances in the eighth inning down by three runs with the bases loaded and no one out. However Miguel Cabrera struck out and J.D. Martinez hit into an inning ending double play.
Detroit’s Victor Martinez was also at the plate representing the tying run with two outs in the ninth inning, but he grounded out to end the game.
The Tigers were led by Jose Iglesias with two hits and an RBI while Justin Upton chipped in with a solo home run.
Detroit’s starting pitcher Jordan Zimmermann took the loss, allowing two runs on three hits in four innings.
The Braves were paced by Freddie Freeman with a two-run home run and Adonis Garcia with two hits.
Detroit will close out its road portion of the season on Sunday afternoon against the Braves hoping to keep its season alive with a win and some help from other teams.
2nd Place in AL Central Division (7 games behind first-place Cleveland)
1.5 games behind Toronto OR Baltimore for the last playoff spot
Magic # to clinch a playoff spot: 4
Misery # to AL Central Division elimination: Eliminated
Misery # to playoff elimination: 1
Next Game: 10/02/2016 @ Atlanta Braves 3:10 p.m. @ Turner Field
Hitting stats: Justin Upton HR (31) RBI (87), Ian Kinsler 2B (29) RBI (83), Jose Iglesias RBI (32), Erick Aybar 2B (19), Nick Castellanos 2B (25).
Pitching stats: Jordan Zimmermann L (9-7) 4 IP 3 H 2 R 2 ER 3 BB 2 K.