Michael Fulmer delivered his longest outing in more than 2 1/2 years and the Detroit Tigers completed a three-game sweep of the host Houston Astros with a 6-4 victory on Wednesday.
Fulmer (1-0) logged five innings and threw 78 pitches — 49 for strikes — in his first start of the season. Those are his highest totals in both categories since he tossed 97 pitches over 6 1/3 innings in a 5-2 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals on Sept. 9, 2018.
Fulmer underwent Tommy John surgery the following spring, and he did not work more than three innings in any of his 10 starts last season.
Fulmer retired the first 11 batters he faced before surrendering consecutive hits to Michael Brantley and Yuli Gurriel with two outs in the fourth inning.
The Astros broke through with two outs in the fifth when catcher Jason Castro belted his second home run of the season, a two-run blast estimated at 447 feet to straightaway center field, that sliced the Tigers’ lead to 6-2.
Fulmer allowed three hits and one walk while recording two strikeouts.
Houston played without Jose Altuve, Yordan Alvarez, Alex Bregman and Martin Maldonado, who were placed on the injured list earlier Wednesday due to health and safety protocols.
Detroit provided Fulmer an early cushion with a pair of three-run frames against Astros right-hander Lance McCullers Jr. (1-1).
In the second inning, Akil Baddoo plated Renato Nunez with a run-scoring double, and Nico Goodrum followed with a groundout that drove home Jonathan Schoop. Baddoo later scored when Robbie Grossman singled to center field.
McCullers departed after hitting Grossman with a pitch to load the bases with two outs in the fourth, and Astros reliever Joe Smith allowed each inherited runner to score while failing to record an out. Jeimer Candelario hit a two-run single, and Wilson Ramos’ single made it 6-0.
The Astros loaded the bases with no outs in the bottom of the ninth against Jose Cisnero with two walks and a single, but Tigers right-hander Bryan Garcia entered and limited the damage to one run to send Houston to its fifth consecutive loss.
Garcia posted his second save of the season.
–Field Level Media
More in Sports
Cincinnati Reds first baseman Joey Votto left Wednesday’s home game against the Chicago White...
New York Liberty guard/forward Jocelyn Willoughby underwent surgery Wednesday to repair her torn left...
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers signed two veteran free agents on Wednesday, adding former Green...
The New York Rangers fired president John Davidson and general manager Jeff Gorton on...
The Philadelphia Union cruised into the CONCACAF Champions League semifinals, completing a 4-1 aggregate...
Dale Earnhardt Jr. announced Tuesday that his annual NASCAR Xfinity Series start will take...
Activision Blizzard on Wednesday reported revenues of $2.28 billion in the first quarter of...
Nate Diaz suffered an undisclosed minor injury during training camp, forcing his welterweight bout...
Rory McIlroy doubled down on his criticism of the Super Golf League on Wednesday,...
A month after saying she would be taking time away from tennis to have...