PITTSBURGH (AP) — Tarik Skubal pitched seven steady innings to win his fourth straight decision and Harold Castro hit a two-run single to lead the Detroit Tigers to a rain-delayed 5-3 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Tuesday night.
After the start was pushed back more than two hours, Skubal (5-2) gave up three runs and six hits while striking out nine and walking one. The left-hander has worked a career-high seven innings in three consecutive outings and is 4-0 with a 1.60 ERA in his last seven starts.
Castro’s hit, a liner up the middle, capped a three-run fourth that put the Tigers in front 4-1. Touted rookie Spencer Torkelson drove in the first run with a double.
Leadoff hitter Willi Castro, slumping Javier Baez and Tucker Barnhart all had two hits, including doubles, for Detroit. Baez raised his batting average to .205 as he has struggled in the first season of a $140 million, six-year contract he signed as a free agent.
Gregory Soto pitched a perfect ninth for his 11th save in 12 opportunities.
Pittsburgh lefty Jose Quintana (1-3) was rocked for four runs and seven hits in 3 1/3 innings while striking out five and walking one. He had a 1.73 ERA over his previous seven starts.
Pirates rookie Cal Mitchell had two hits, one being a two-run homer to right field in the fourth that drew the Pirates to 4-3. It was just the second home run Skubal has allowed to a left-handed batter in his three-year career.
Barnhart’s RBI double in the eighth gave the Tigers an insurance run.
The Pirates’ Yu Chang doubled home the game’s first run in the second. An inning later, Jonathan Schoop tied it with an RBI double.
Detroit snapped a three-game losing streak. Pittsburgh lost for just the second time in seven games.
The start was delayed 2 hours, 5 minutes by rain.
Skubal was listed as the starting pitcher on the Tigers’ original lineup card.
However, manager A.J. Hinch decided to switch to right-hander Wily Peralta about 30 minutes before the scheduled start time. During the delay, the Tigers again changed their minds and went back to Skubal.
The thinking behind the original move was because rain was forecast to arrive in the third inning, Hinch did not want to have to potentially remove Skubal from the game early. Once the start was delayed, the Tigers returned to their original plan.
Travis Swaggerty became the seventh Pirates player to make his major league debut this season. Starting in center field, he went 0 for 3.
The Pirates’ first-round draft pick in 2018 was called up Sunday from Triple-A Indianapolis.
Tigers: 3B Jeimer Candelario (left shoulder subluxation) was placed on the 10-day injured list and RF Austin Meadows (vertigo) was activated from the IL. The Tigers are hopeful Candelario will be ready to be reinstated June 16, the first day he is eligible. … RHP Casey Mize (sprained right elbow) has been shut down after being unable to throw from 90 feet and will seek additional medical opinions. The first overall pick in the 2018 amateur draft has been out since April 15. … LHP Eduardo Rodriguez (strained left ribcage) will make a rehab start Thursday for Triple-A Toledo. … RHP Matt Manning (right shoulder inflammation) has been cleared to resume throwing. … RHP Michael Pineda (fractured right middle finger) threw a bullpen. … RHP Jose Cisnero (right shoulder strain) and OFs Robbie Grossman (neck strain) and Victor Reyes (strained left quad) began rehab assignments with Toledo.