Justin Verlander pitched into the ninth inning and the Tigers held off a late Yankees rally for a 2-1 win in Game 3 of the American League Championship Series Tuesday night.
With two runners on and two outs in the top of the ninth, Tigers reliever Phil Coke struck out Raul Ibanez on a 3-2 pitch to seal the victory for the Tigers, who are now one win away from reaching the World Series for the first time since 2006.
The Tigers took the lead in the bottom of the fourth inning on a solo home run by Delmon Young off Yankees starter Phil Hughes. They added a run in the bottom of the fifth on an RBI double by Miguel Cabrera.
Cabrera's double scored Quintin Berry, who reached on an error by third baseman Eric Chavez. Chavez started in place of Alex Rodriguez, who was benched for the second time this postseason.
The Yankees got a run back in the top of the ninth on a solo home run by Eduardo Nunez, who started at shortstop in place of the injured Derek Jeter.
Verlander pitched 8.1 innings. Nunez's home run was the only run he allowed. He gave up three hits, did not walk any batters and struck out three.
Hughes took the loss. He allowed one run on three hits over three-plus innings, walking three and striking out one. He left in the top of the fourth with a back injury.
The Yankees will have ace CC Sabathia pitching in Game 4 Wednesday night as they try to save their season. He will oppose Max Scherzer. The game is scheduled to start at 8 p.m.