DETROIT: Coming into Sunday, right-hander Josh Tomlin’s career ERA against the Detroit Tigers was the third-highest of any major league team he’s faced.
Unfortunately for the Indians, that trend continued.
Tomlin went jut 4 1/3 innings and surrendered four runs on six hits, including a two-run home run by Torii Hunter in the fourth, as the Tigers prevailed 5-1.
The Indians took the four-game series at Comerica Park 3-1 and headed to Minnesota as a three-city, 11-game road trip continues. The Tribe has yet to sweep a four-game series this season, but is 7-5 against Detroit after going 4-15 last season.
The outcome left the Indians 51/2 games behind the American League Central Division-leading Tigers.
Left-hander Drew Smyly (6-8, 3.80) held the Indians hitless for 4 2/3 innings before catcher Yan Gomes broke through with a double to the gap in right center in the fifth. Gomes hit his 13th home run of the season off Smyly in the seventh.
The Indians finished with four hits off three Tiger pitchers.
Tomlin (5-7, 4.43) came in 2-3 with a 6.31 ERA against the Tigers, including 1-1 with a 7.71 ERA this season.
The Tigers jumped on him for two runs in the first as Austin Jackson doubled to the left field corner and Ian Kinsler brought him home with a single to left. Victor Martinez scored Kinsler with a one-out sacrifice fly, the lone RBI of the series for the ex-Indian who played in his fifth All-Star Game last week.
In the fourth, Tomlin gave up a two-out single to center by J.D. Martinez before Hunter’s homer, his 13th of the year.
The Tigers tacked on a run in the eighth off right-hander Austin Adams when Hunter walked and Nick Castellanos doubled off the center field wall.