Sanchez came up empty in his first postseason start back on Oct. 9 against Oakland, but was fully brilliant on Sunday with seven innings of shutout ball against a potent Yankees lineup. The 28-year-old hurler gave up only three hits and walked three others on a day when he had full command of the strike zone.
Not to be outdone by his counterpart, New York starter Hiroki Kuroda was also a dominant force on the mound with 11 strikeouts over seven and 2/3 innings. Though he matched Sanchez for the first six frames, Kuroda was slowed by a Delmon Young fielder's choice that scored Quintin Berry in the seventh, and then roughed up further by a pair of RBI singles from Avisail Garcia and Miguel Cabrera in the eighth.
After a slow start offensively, Detroit produced seven hits as a team after the sixth inning alone and once again made New York's fatigued bullpen work for every last out. With closer Jose Valverde benched by manager Jim Leyland after his woeful performance in Game 1, the Tigers turned to left-handed specialist Phil Coke for the final two innings to seal the win.
Eager to build on their significant lead in the series, the Tigers will return home on Tuesday for three straight games at Comerica Park. Righty Justin Verlander will take the ball in Game 3, while the Yankees plan to counter with youngster Phil Hughes.