Alex Avila and Ryan Raburn belted a pair of home runs in the sixth and eighth innings to help the Tigers take the first two games from Texas with a 5-4 win on Wednesday.
Avila broke a 3-3 tie with a solo shot of Rangers starter Matt Harrison (9-8) in the sixth, and Raburn added to it in the eighth with a solo homer of his own off newly acquired reliever Koji Uehara.
It was the second straight night that a Tigers player hit a home run off one of Texas’ trade deadline acquisitions. Brennan Boesch hit a game-winning home run in the rain on Tuesday off Mike Adams to give Detroit a 6-5 win.
Doug Fister (4-12) made his Detroit debut and found out what it was like to get some run support, picking up his first win since May 30. Fister gave up eight hits and three runs (two earned) in seven strong innings.
Jose Valverde pitched the ninth and picked up his 30th save in as many chances. It turned out he needed Raburn’s homer very much, as he surrendered a solo shot to Mike Napoli with one out, but retired the next two batters.
Detroit jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first three innings, but Fister got into some early jams and the Rangers had the game tied again by the fifth inning.