Miami, FL - Anibal Sanchez all but clinched the AL ERA title by pitching five scoreless innings Saturday for the Detroit Tigers, but Joaquin Benoit blew a save and they lost to the Miami Marlins 2-1 in 10 innings.
Sanchez lowered his ERA from 2.64 to 2.57 to increase a slim lead. Oakland's Bartolo Colon ranks second at 2.65 followed by Seattle's Hisashi Iwakuma at 2.66, and both have pitched their final game of the regular season.
The AL Central champion Tigers will conclude their regular season Sunday, then start a division series at Oakland on Friday.
Miguel Cabrera, already assured of his second consecutive AL batting title, went 2 for 4 to hike his average to .348. His first series in Miami since being traded by the Marlins in 2007 has been a box-office success -- the crowd of 28,750 was the largest since the Marlins' home opener in April.