DETROIT — The San Francisco Giants have gotten themselves back into the NL postseason hunt thanks to a lot of clutch hits.
Those key knocks eluded them Sunday night in a 6-1 loss to the Detroit Tigers.
Trailing 3-1, the Giants put their first two runners on base in the seventh inning, but couldn't get either home. The Tigers scored three times in the bottom of the inning to seal the win.
Joaquin Arias started the inning with a single and Al Alburquerque walked Gregor Blanco. Arias took third when Brandon Crawford flied out to deep center, but Blaine Hardy came out of the bullpen to retire Angel Pagan and Joe Panik.
"We needed a timely hit there to get back into the game," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "That's what we've been getting the last few games, but not that time."
The Giants hadn't had many chances in the first six innings against Tigers rookie Kyle Lobstein, who earned his first major league victory. He allowed run, four hits and two walks in 5 2-3 innings.
"That kid threw well," Bochy said. "He hit his spots, got ahead in the count and worked from there."
The 25-year-old Lobstein, who made his major league debut in long relief on Aug. 23, has a 2.11 ERA in three starts since moving into Anibal Sanchez's rotation spot five days later. The Tigers have won all three games.
"I'm pretty excited," Lobstein said after receiving a beer shower from teammates. "It's my first major league win, and we avoided the sweep, which makes it even better. We definitely needed a game like this."
The win was Detroit's second over the Giants in 10 games, including San Francisco's sweep of the 2012 World Series.
"This was a big win for us, because we didn't want to face the Royals (Monday) having lost three in a row," Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said. "This puts us in a better mood going into what is, at least until now, the biggest series of the season."
Four relievers finished, with Phil Coke pitching the ninth.
"I've faced him for years," Hunter said. "We came up together, and he still knows how to pitch."
Hudson, pitching in Detroit for the first time in 11 years, gave up three runs and eight hits in six innings. Hudson and LaTroy Hawkins are the only active pitchers with a victory at Tiger Stadium, which closed in 1999.
"I felt all right, and I made some good pitches," Hudson said. "The one big mistake I made was to Miggy. He's starting to catch lightning a little bit, and when you hang a pitch like that to him, he's going to hit it out."
The Tigers took the lead on Hunter's RBI single in the third, and Cabrera followed with a long homer over the Giants bullpen in left-center field.
The Giants finally got to Lobstein when Angel Pagan's infield single scored Gregor Blanco with two outs in the fifth.
Ian Kinsler's RBI double off George Kontos made it 4-1 in the seventh, and Cabrera drove in Kinsler with two outs to give him 11 straight seasons with 100 RBIs.
Victor Martinez put the game away with a double into the right-center field gap that scored the hobbled Cabrera from first.
"He said it was feeling better before the game, but running all the way from first was a problem," Ausmus said. "We'll see in the morning, but I'd say there is a very good chance he'll be the DH."
Tigers: Reports surfaced Sunday that Cabrera will need offseason surgery for a bone spur in his right ankle, but Ausmus said that a decision on treatment won't be made until after the season.
"I don't know where that came from, because we don't know what is going to happen," he said. "The consensus is that there's one spur causing the aggravation."
Giants: 1B Brandon Belt (concussion) could resume baseball activities on Monday, but Bochy hasn't put a timeline on his return to the lineup. OF Michael Morse (strained oblique) is day-to-day after he was given a cortisone shot on Friday.
STILL LOOKING FOR A SWEEP
The Giants failed to pull off their first three-game road sweep of an AL team since interleague play began in 1997. San Francisco hasn't won three straight games in AL since topping Minnesota and Detroit in 2005.
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