Dustin Peterson’s 1st career hit makes difference in Detroit Tigers’ 3-1 victory at the New York Yankees
By MIKE FITZPATRICK
AP Baseball Writer
NEW YORK — Dustin Peterson’s parents were right there in the Yankee Stadium stands to see his first major league hit — a tiebreaking rocket off one of baseball’s best closers.
Hard to dream up any better scenario.
Peterson laced a go-ahead double to deep left field against Aroldis Chapman in the ninth inning that sent the Detroit Tigers past the New York Yankees 3-1 on a nippy Tuesday night.
“I don’t think I would change a thing,” said Peterson, who made his big league debut with Atlanta last May. “I will never forget this, that’s for sure.”
Jordy Mercer added an RBI single and the Tigers got another strong start from Jordan Zimmermann after he took a perfect game two outs into the seventh on opening day in Toronto last week.
This time, Zimmermann limited a makeshift Yankees lineup depleted by injuries to one run in 6 2/3 innings.
“He just really doesn’t give them much time to breathe,” Detroit manager Ron Gardenhire said. “He’s got good stuff, he’s healthy and he’s really throwing the ball well.”
The right-hander from Wisconsin pitched in short sleeves while other players bundled up on a 45-degree night in the Bronx. He struck out six and the only walk he issued was intentional.
“I’m not throwing as many fastballs. A lot more off-speed stuff,” Zimmermann said.
Jeimer Candelario and John Hicks hit consecutive doubles off New York starter Masahiro Tanaka with two outs in the sixth to tie it 1-all. Candelario’s grounder caromed high off first base and past Luke Voit as the big first baseman tried to grab the ball with his bare hand.
Joe Jimenez (1-0) ended the eighth with an unassisted double play after snagging Gleyber Torres’ line drive. He ran to first base himself and jumped on the bag, irritating Voit even further after hitting him on the left hand with a 96 mph fastball.
“Best feeling ever,” Jimenez said. “Obviously, you don’t expect plays like that.”