Entering the fifth inning, the Tigers and Yankees were tied at 1, and Doug Fister and Ivan Nova had combined to retire 15 hitters in a row. Nova made it 16 when he struck out Victor Martinez leading off.
It looked like they'd cash in two pitches after that. Jhonny Peralta lined a low fastball into center, and Avila rounded third to come home. But Curtis Granderson threw the ball to Derek Jeter, and Jeter made a perfect relay throw to Russell Martin, who tagged Avila out while avoiding a dangerous collision.
Nova wasn't yet completely out of trouble. With two down and two in scoring position, he had to get through Wilson Betemit, sent up to pinch-hit for the righty Brandon Inge. But Betemit smacked a routine fly, and so the 1-1 score didn't budge. On we go, to the bottom of the fifth.