-LF Yoenis Cespedes is the new No. 2 hitter and has scored nine runs in 11 games, driving in eight and batting.320.

Well, before an announced crowd of 36,378 at Comerica Park, the Orioles had 14 at-bats with runners in scoring position, and had just one hit, an RBI single by Jonathan Schoop in the second inning. Needless to say, the O’s are very much in the thick of the playoff hunt and if the trade deadline were today, the Orioles would be buyers, or at the least, not sellers.

With Detroit up 3-1 in the third, J.D. “We got good times ahead and we are going to compete the rest of the way”. The Tigers won the AL Central in each of the last four seasons but watched the pitching staff give up a total of 24 runs in dropping three straight before the break and now sit nine games behind first-place Kansas City.

But it was no problem at all for the Tigers’ Jose Iglesias, Victor Martinez and J.D. Martinez (home run, two great catches). Seemingly struggling with his grip on a muggy, humid night in Detroit, he had no command of his breaking pitches and occasionally elevated his fastball. Jimenez did not get a chance to pitch against Detroit in the playoffs last season and is 5-9 with a 4.93 ERA in 17 starts against the Tigers in his career.Sanchez issued five walks and gave up a home run in 6 1/3 innings at Seattle on July 8 but limited the damage to three earned runs and came out with the win to improve to 5-0 in his last six starts. Jimenez’s season ERA rose from 2.81 to 3.29 in one outing.

Anibal Sanchez (9-7) worked in and out of trouble for six innings in the first meeting between these teams since Baltimore swept Detroit in last year’s AL Division Series. Two of the first three hitters reached base against him, but he struck out Davis and retired Matt Weiters on a groundout to end a frustrating game for the Orioles. Martinez reached up to catch Chris Davis drive when it looked like the ball might clear the wall in right.

“The two in Chicago were pretty tough”. It was one of those things where it was kind of a surreal experience, looking around, and seeing all these great players, and just being in the locker room with them, and knowing theyre human, just like you, ” Martinez said Friday, when the Tigers returned to their own clubhouse after the break. “I feel equal to them”.

Things won’t get any easier for the Orioles, losers of six of their past seven, on Saturday evening.

“We know how hard it is”, Showalter said. Does that mean you’ve failed? I just remember thinking, ‘Dude, I would to be running on pure adrenaline right now, because I’m exhausted.’ We had a long game the day before.