Verlander (4-2) allowed four hits, four walks and had four strikeouts over 6 2/3 innings. Joel Zumaya chipped in 1 1/3 innings, allowing only one runner to reach base, and Eddie Bonine pitched a perfect ninth for the Tigers.
New York starter CC Sabathia (4-2) gave up nine hits and all six Detroit runs in six innings.
The Tigers scored in the second inning when Gerald Laird's soft singled scored Boesch. Cabrera and Boesch made it 3-0 in the fourth with back-to-back home runs. Detroit's other runs came in the sixth inning with Cabrera doubling in two runs and scoring on another Laird RBI single.
Jorge Posada had two hits, including a double. The other three Yankee hits were singles.