Yankees vs. Tigers: Tigers Take 3-2 Lead In The Pitching Duel That Wasn't

The CC Sabathia/Justin Verlander match-up wasn't overhyped -- it was properly hyped. These were two of the best pitchers in baseball matching up in the playoffs. That's sort of what makes baseball tick. If there were billboards every half-mile with a 60'x80' billboard that featured nothing but Sabathia's face, followed by a similar billboard every other half-mile for Verlander, this game wouldn't have been overhyped.

Then the dang thing started, and there were walks and triples and walks.

Starting in the bottom of the fourth inning, though, everything was as it should be. Sabathia got his first 1-2-3 inning of the night, striking out Alex Avila to end the inning. And in the top of the fifth, Verlander was in Cy Young -- dare we say, MVP? -- form, as he struck out the side to the delight of a raucous crowd.

Aces! Doing ace things! Oh, how we missed that.

And then in the bottom of the fifth, CC Sabathia gave up a single after throwing eight pitches to some September call-up named Brandon Inge. Back in the stretch for you, CC! That was followed by a bunt -- always a great idea with no outs and a struggling starter on the mound -- and Ramon Santiago roped an RBI double into the gap.

With two outs and Santiago on second, Sabathia walked Miguel Cabrera intentionally to get to Victor Martinez, but Martinez grounded out to third to end the threat.

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