DETROIT — Torii Hunter hit a tiebreaking sacrifice fly in the eighth inning after two Boston errors helped load the bases, and Prince Fielder added a two-run single to help the Detroit Tigers to a sloppy 7-5 victory over the Red Sox on Sunday.
Justin Verlander struggled, and Detroit trailed 4-3 in the seventh before Andrew Miller (0-2) hit Jhonny Peralta with a pitch with the bases loaded to tie it.
In the eighth, umpires ruled Boston’s Daniel Nava dropped Avisail Garcia’s deep fly to right, and Red Sox manager John Farrell was ejected for arguing.
Joaquin Benoit (2-0) got the final four outs for the Tigers, although he allowed a run in the ninth.
Nava was in right because Shane Victorino left the game with lower back tightness.
Nava’s error helped swing the game in Detroit’s favor. He went back toward the wall in right but tried to make a basket catch. A replay showed he may have lost the ball while transferring it from his glove to his throwing hand.
Garcia ended up on second, and Bryan Holaday’s bunt also worked out nicely for Detroit when Miller threw wildly to first for another error, putting runners at first and third with nobody out.
Austin Jackson walked, and Alex Wilson came on and allowed Hunter’s sac fly that gave the Tigers a 5-4 lead.
Miguel Cabrera was intentionally walked, and Fielder singled up the middle off Craig Breslow.
The Tigers were also fortunate when they tied the game in the seventh. After Jackson’s leadoff single, Hunter hit a line drive that second baseman Dustin Pedroia dropped. It appeared the Red Sox might get a double play out of it, because Hunter was slow getting out of the batter’s box, but Jackson retreated to first.
Pedroia threw to first, retiring Hunter while Jackson was still standing on the base. When Boston retired Hunter, it meant Jackson was no longer forced to second, so he remained safely at first.