BOSTON -- Anibal Sanchez threw six no-hit innings in Game 1 of the American League Championship Series late Saturday night, but a high pitch count forced him out of the game.
Detroit won 1-0 on a two-out, RBI single in the sixth by Jhonny Peralta.
Sanchez struck out 12 batters and walked six, throwing 116 pitches. He was lifted in the seventh for Al Aburquerque, who kept the no-hitter intact with a perfect inning. Jose Veras struck out two in the eighth, and Drew Smyly then retired David Ortiz on a flyout to take the no-hitter into the ninth.
Joaquin Benoit gave up a two-out single to Daniel Nava in the ninth and watched him steal second with two outs, but induced a game-ending pop-up from Xander Bogaerts.
Sanchez also struck out four in the first inning, tying a postseason record.
Boston's Jon Lester took a shutout into the sixth before walking Miguel Cabrera and hitting Prince Fielder with one out. A fielders' choice put runners on the corners with two outs, before Peralta hit a 2-2 curveball into center, snapping the scoreless tie.
Sanchez tied a postseason record with his four-strikeout first, which was aided by a strikeout on a wild pitch by Shane Victorino. The only other pitcher to accomplish that feat was the Cubs' Orval Overall against Detroit in the first inning of their World Series-clinching Game 5 win in 1908.That was the last Cubs' championship.
Lester stranded a pair of runners in the first by inducing Victor Martinez to ground out, and got out of the third with a double play grounder off the bat of Torii Hunter. Sanchez issued a pair of walks in the second but got Jacoby Ellsbury to ground out to end the threat.
The Tigers threatened again in the fifth, but couldn't push a run across.
Peralta doubled leading off, but was thrown out while trying to get back to second on a grounder to first baseman Mike Napoli. After a single and an error by Victorino put runners on the corners, Omar Infante made a poor base-running decision, trying to score on a sharp grounder to third. Will Middlebrooks easily threw Infante out at the plate, and Austin Jackson flied out to end the inning.
Sanchez loaded the bases with three walks in the sixth, but struck out Stephen Drew on a slider to escape the jam.
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