CLEVELAND (AP) – Travis Hafner hit his third home run of the day, Coco Crisp added an inside-the-park homer, and the surging Cleveland Indians spoiled the major league debut of Justin Verlander with a 6-0 victory over the Detroit Tigers to sweep a day-night doubleheader Monday.

Hafner homered twice and drove in five runs in the first game, leading the Indians to a 9-3 victory.

Jason Davis (4-2), called up from Triple-A Buffalo to make the start, allowed four hits, struck out five and walked two in six innings to improve to 2-0 this season against the Tigers. It was his first big league win since a 7-0 triumph at San Francisco on June 11.

Hafner was 6-for-10 with three homers and six RBIs in the doubleheader. He added a 457-foot shot in the eighth inning of the second game off Fernando Rodney.

One batter earlier, Detroit center fielder Nook Logan tried to make a leaping catch of Crisp’s drive against the wall, but the ball ricocheted toward the infield. Right fielder Magglio Ordonez picked the ball up and threw it, but Crisp beat the relay throw to the plate.

The Indians have won nine of 11 and 21 of 28. The Tigers lost for the 10th time in 12 games.

Catcher Vance Wilson was ejected by plate umpire Chris Guccione in the ninth inning after being called out on strikes for the second out. Wilson and Tigers manager Alan Trammell had protested strike two, and after being called out, Wilson turned and pointed his finger at Guccione’s face while yelling at him.

Third base umpire Angel Hernandez attempted to pull Wilson away from Guccione, but their feet became entangled and the two tumbled to the ground.

Matt Miller, Bob Howry and David Riske each worked one inning to complete the six-hitter.

The Indians sent nine men to the plate and scored three runs off Verlander (0-1) in the first inning.

Victor Martinez extended his hitting streak to a career-high 15 games with a two-out RBI double and scored on a double by Ben Broussard. Jhonny Peralta added an RBI single and Verlander walked two straight to load the bases before getting out of the 34-pitch inning.

The right-hander, the No. 2 pick in the 2004 draft, was a combined 10-2 with a 1.43 ERA and 122 strikeouts in 101 innings at two levels in the minor leagues this year.

He gave up four runs and seven hits in 5 1-3 innings, walking three, striking out four and throwing several pitches that registered 99 mph on the radar gun.

Left off the AL All-Star team Sunday, Hafner scored three runs and went 4-for-5 to support the six-hit pitching of Scott Elarton (5-3) in the first game as Cleveland improved to 25-1 when scoring six or more runs.

“When they took the (All-Star) vote, I didn’t have a very good case,” said Hafner, who has seven homers in 10 games and 17 RBIs in his last nine games. Since June 1, he is hitting .379 with 12 homers and 37 RBIs in 29 games.

Elarton pitched his fourth career complete game and first since a two-hit shutout of the Chicago White Sox on Aug. 29.

“Obviously when you have a doubleheader and your starter goes all the way, that’s a big pickup for everybody on the team,” Indians manager Eric Wedge said.

Elarton gave up a one-out single by Carlos Guillen in the first, then retired 17 in a row before Guillen beat out an infield single in the seventh. Chris Shelton and Rondell White followed with singles to ruin the right-hander’s shutout bid.

White hit a two-run homer in the ninth, but Elarton hung on to go to 5-1 with a 3.32 ERA in his last nine starts. He struck out six without a walk.

Hafner put Cleveland ahead 1-0 against Jason Johnson (5-7) with an RBI single in the first inning, scoring Coco Crisp, who doubled.

Broussard and Ronnie Belliard drove in third-inning runs and Cleveland broke it open in the fourth on an RBI single by Peralta and three-run homer by Hafner, a 471-foot shot to center, to make it 7-0.

Hafner hit his 16th homer off Doug Creek in the sixth for the sixth multihomer game of his career.

Johnson gave up seven runs and 11 hits in 3 1-3 innings, his shortest start since April 13 at Minnesota – when he got only one out and was roughed up for five runs.

Notes: Detroit designated INF Jason Smith for assignment to make room for Verlander. … Cleveland optioned RHP Kazuhito Tadano to Buffalo. … Cleveland is 34-18 (.654) since May 9 and has won 15 of its last 21 home games. … Hafner has 29 RBIs in his last 18 games. … Indians 3B Aaron Boone missed the first game to be with wife Laura, who delivered the couple’s first child, a boy. … Johnson fell to 0-3 with a 7.68 ERA in 10 career games, including eight starts, against the Indians. … The doubleheader drew 60,468 fans and more than 110,000 hot dogs were sold at a special price of $1 apiece.

AP-ES-07-04-05 2204EDT


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.