BOSTON -- Anibal Sanchez didn't get a chance to finish out his no-hit bid.
With a 1-0 lead over the Red Sox in Game 1 of the American League Championship Series, Tigers manager Jim Leyland made the tough call to replace Sanchez after the sixth inning.
Al Alburquerque, Jose Veras and Drew Smyly combined to keep the no-hit bid going into the ninth.
That left Joaquin Benoit to try to complete the first combined no-hitter in postseason history and only the third postseason no-hitter overall.
Benoit got Mike Napoli to strike out looking at a slider.
Daniel Nava singled to center to break up the no-hitter. Quintin Berry took over as a pinch-runner and stole second base with two outs, after Stephen Drew flew out to right.
Xander Bogaerts popped out to short to end the game.
The Tigers went on to beat the Red Sox, 1-0, at Fenway Park to take the series lead.
The Tigers combined for 17 strikeouts, matching the postseason record set by Bob Gibson in the 1968 World Series.
It was the second consecutive game that the Tigers took a no-hitter into the seventh inning. This time, the starting pitcher didn't enter the seventh to continue the no-hit bid.
Alburquerque took over for Sanchez to start the seventh inning with the Tigers leading, 1-0.
It was the first time in postseason history, according to research from Baseball-Reference.com, that a pitcher was removed in the sixth inning or later without giving up a hit.
Alburquerque got pinch-hitter Mike Carp to ground out to shortstop, then got two strikeouts--Jarrod Saltalamacchia looking and Jacoby Ellsbury swinging--in the seventh.
Veras took over in the eighth inning and struck out both batters he faced, Shane Victorino and Dustin Pedroia.
Leyland brought in Smyly, a lefty, to pitch to David Ortiz with the no-hitter on the line. Ortiz was 3-for-4 with a home run off in his career off Smyly before the at-bat. Smyly got Ortiz to fly out to center.
Sanchez, making his first career start at Fenway, didn't allow a hit over six innings. He gave up six walks and had 12 strikeouts.
Oakland's Yoenis Cespedes broke up a no-hit bid by Justin Verlander with a single in the seventh inning Thursday. The Tigers went on to beat the A's, 3-0, in Game 5 of the AL Division Series.
Sanchez had loaded the bases in the sixth inning, but got out of the jam by striking out left-handed hitter Drew on a slider.
Sanchez had given up a one-out walk to Pedroia and back-to-back walks to Mike Napoli and Daniel Nava with two outs.
Leyland had Alburquerque and Smyly ready in the bullpen, but left in Sanchez to pitch to Drew. Sanchez threw a 96 mph fastball on his 115th pitch, then got Drew to strike out swinging on with a slider on the next pitch.
That gave Sanchez a dozen strikeouts, the most ever against the Red Sox in a postseason game.
Sanchez surpassed the 11 strikeouts Bartolo Colon had against the Red Sox, which was the most against the franchise in a postseason game, according to Baseball-Reference.com.
Sanchez had allowed eight hits and six runs (five earned) over 41/3 innings in his last start, a 6-3 loss in Game 3 over the ALDS against the A's.
Jhonny Peralta gave the Tigers a 1-0 lead in the sixth with an RBI single to bring home Miguel Cabrera.
Peralta, who had led off the fifth with a double, hit a ground-rule double in the eighth inning to put runners on second and third with two outs.
Red Sox lefty Craig Breslow gave up a walk to Omar Infante to load the bases before Alex Avila flew out to center.
Sanchez, who earlier this season set a club record for most strikeouts in a game (17), became the first player in club history to strike out four batters in one inning.
Sanchez is the second pitcher in postseason history to get four strikeouts in one inning, joining Orval Overall of the Chicago Cubs. Overall did in the first inning of Game 5 of the 1908 World Series.
Ellsbury was called out on strikes. Victorino went down swinging, but reached first base on a wild pitch that got past Avila.
Ortiz was the next victim and argued after being called out on strikes by third base umpire Alfonso Marquez.
Napoli then became the fourth to strikeout, going down swinging.
It took 40 pitches for the Red Sox to put a ball in play, when Will Middlebrooks hit a fly ball to left for the second out of the second inning.
The Tigers might have been able to score in the first inning with a healthy Cabrera.
Nava had trouble playing Cabrera's single off the wall in leftfield. Fully healthy, Cabrera might have gotten to second base and scored on Fielder's single to center.
Instead, the Tigers had runners on first and second with two out before Martinez grounded out to shortstop.
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