Jurrjens greeted harshly as Braves lose
Righty allows seven runs, six earned; Hinske drives in two
LAKELAND, Fla. -- Ryan Raburn hit his sixth home run of the spring, providing offensive support behind Justin Verlander for the Tigers' third win over the Braves this spring, a 7-2 decision Tuesday at Joker Marchant Stadium.
The win improved the Tigers to 13-2-3, the best record in the Majors so far this spring.
Barely an hour after Tigers manager Jim Leyland said this is the most relaxed and confident he has ever seen Raburn in Spring Training, Raburn went about demonstrating why with his sixth home run in his 25th at-bat of the spring. He pulled a hanging curveball from former Tiger Jair Jurrjens deep to left, driving in Alex Avila in the second inning for a 3-0 lead after Austin Jackson singled and scored in the first.
Prince Fielder and Delmon Young added RBI singles in the third inning before Young added his fourth home run of the spring in the fifth, saddling Jurrjens with seven runs, six earned, on seven hits over five innings. A National League All-Star last summer, Jurrjens has allowed 15 earned runs over 13 1/3 innings this spring as he tries to work his way back after missing the 2011 stretch run with a right knee strain.
Verlander entered the day having allowed one run in 9 2/3 innings with 13 strikeouts, but he ran into third-inning trouble when back-to-back singles and a Martin Prado walk loaded the bases with nobody out. Verlander induced a popout from Chipper Jones on a 2-0 fastball, but Eric Hinske pulled a two-run single to left two pitches later.
Verlander struck out four batters in five innings.
Up next: The Braves will send Tommy Hanson to the mound on Wednesday afternoon when they travel to Viera, Fla., to face the Nationals in the MLB.TV Free Game of the Day. Hanson will be scheduled to complete four innings. The right-hander should have at least three more starts before the start of the regular season. Hanson has been behind schedule since suffering a concussion on Feb. 20.