On a cold night at Comerica Park, Zach McAllister continued his hot pitching against a team he has seldom pitched well against.

McAllister allowed one run in six innings to lead the Indians to a 3-2 victory over the Tigers. In his last two starts McAllister has allowed one run in 13 2/3 innings with 10 strikeouts and two walks.

"McAllister did a great job against a great lineup," said manager Terry Francona. "He really used his fastball well in the early going."

John Axford earned his fifth save, but it was not easy. An error by center fielder Michael Bourn put the tying run on third base with one out. Axford struck out pinch-hitter Don Kelly and retired Rajai Davis on a grounder to short to end it.

Alex Avila doubled to right center and continued to third when Bourn dropped the ball after cutting it off in the gap to put the pressure on Axford.

"That was nobody's fault but mine," said Bourn, in his first game of the season. "I had the ball in my glove, but I was moving too fast and dropped it. What I was trying to do was keep him from getting to third base."

The Indians took advantage of some early wildness by Anibal Sanchez, who may have had trouble defrosting fingers on the frigid night. It was 42 degrees at game time.

Sanchez (0-1, 3.21) opened the game with three straight walks. Slumping Carlos Santana was in position to do some serious damage, but he bounced into a 6-4-3 double play. Bourn, who opened the season on the disabled list with a strained left hamstring, managed to score from third for a 1-0 lead.

Detroit came right back to tie the score, 1-1, in the first. Ian Kinsler opened the inning with a double past third. He scored on consecutive ground balls to short by Torii Hunter and Victor Martinez.

An error and another walk set the stage Yan Gomes' two-run triple in the second. Asdrubal Cabrera reached to start the inning when Miguel Cabrera misplayed his sharp grounder to first. Sanchez followed with a walk to David Murphy before Gomez drove a long triple to right center for a 3-1 lead.

Gomes has 11 hits this season, four for extra bases.

McAllister (2-0, 2.04) protected the lead through his six innings of work. He struck out three and walked two. He threw 68 percent (66-for-97) of his pitches for strikes.

The 6-6, 240-pound McAllister came into the game with a career record of 0-2 with a 4.85 ERA in six starts against the Tigers. Last year he was 0-2 with a 9.00 ERA in three starts against Detroit.