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COL@DET: Verlander fans five through eight strong

The Tigers will send the last of a stretch of three consecutive Cy Young Award winners to the mound Wednesday as they continue their four-game series at Yankee Stadium.

After Max Scherzer was outdueled by five New York pitchers Monday night, the newly acquired David Price took a no-decision after an 8 2/3-inning, 10-strikeout performance Tuesday night. Justin Verlander, the 2011 Cy Young winner, will start Wednesday.

Verlander is coming off an eight-inning outing, which ties his second game of the season as his longest start of the year. In a season that hasn't gone according to plan, it seems that Verlander might finally be turning a corner.

Pitching against the Rockies last week, the 31-year-old righty gave up two runs off eight hits. He's allowed more than four runs in a start only once since the middle of June.

"I think pitching is constant tinkering," Verlander said. "You're always working on things. This year, I made more drastic adjustments than I would have liked, but I feel like I'm heading in the right direction and will continue working on what I've been working on, and go out there and continue to pitch the way I did [against the Rockies].

Detroit might again be without the services of rookie shortstop Eugenio Suarez, who is awaiting the results of an MRI on his left knee.

Verlander will be opposed by Chris Capuano, who is making his third start since joining the Yankees in a trade with the Rockies.

Capuano hasn't allowed a homer since becoming a Yankee, but he has still given up more runs than he'd like. His ERA in his two starts is 4.38 through 12 1/3 innings.

He retired nine straight in his last start, against Boston, after allowing a fourth-inning RBI single.

"After that, I felt like I found my release point and started to make better pitches," Capuano said. "I want to take what I did the last three innings and start out from the get-go [against Detroit]."

Tigers: Club signs former closer Johnson
After signing with Detroit on Tuesday, former A's closer Jim Johnson will join the club Wednesday in New York to throw for pitching coach Jeff Jones.

Following the workout, Johnson will report to Triple-A Toledo. According to Tigers president and general manager Dave Dombrowski, the assignment is not a permanent one.

"We're not signing him to go to Triple-A," Dombrowski said Tuesday. "We're hopeful that he'll be able to help us here at some point."

Johnson saved at least 50 games in back-to-back seasons for the Orioles before being traded to Oakland last December but struggled mightily this season. He posted a 7.14 ERA with just two saves through 38 games with the A's before being released.

Yankees: Hill joins bullpen
On Tuesday, the Yankees awarded a waiver claim on lefty reliever Matt Thornton to the Nationals.

In the corresponding move, the team signed left-hander Rich Hill to a big league contract.

"This is about giving us some flexibility in the near term because of what's going on in our starting rotation with injuries, and in the long term as we enter next year with a lot of the choices we feel are starting to knock on the door," general manager Brian Cashman said.

According to manager Joe Girardi, Hill will be used, at least temporarily, out of the bullpen in situations similar to how Thornton was used. It means for the time being, the Yankees will still have 13 pitchers on their active roster.

"We don't want to stay at 13 pitchers," said Girardi. "It's not something we anticipate doing for the rest of the year, and those multiple-inning guys become even more important."

Worth noting
• Capuano is unbeaten in four appearances -- two starts -- against the Tigers, though he has a 6.43 ERA.

• The Tigers have received quality starts in 12 of their last 16 games.

• Miguel Cabrera has hit safely in 41 of 48 career games against New York.

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