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This Win Is Twice as Nice for Tigers

September 16, 2006|From the Associated Press

DETROIT — The Detroit Tigers doubled their Central Division lead Friday night.

Magglio Ordonez hit a two-run homer during an eight-run fourth inning, Brandon Inge added a grand slam in the sixth and the Tigers increased their division lead to two games by routing the Baltimore Orioles, 17-2.

"This was a fun day," said Craig Monroe, who homered and scored three runs. "This proves that the bats haven't gone anywhere. This season is a grind, and everyone is going to have a slump."

The Tigers, who had 19 hits, scored more runs against the Orioles than they totaled in their previous six games. Carlos Guillen and Sean Casey both had two hits in the fourth inning, and Guillen scored twice.

Jeremy Bonderman (12-8) yielded two runs and seven hits in six innings, struck out seven and walked two.

"This is important for this ballclub," Tigers Manager Jim Leyland said. "It was nice to see the offense break out, and Jeremy got through it pretty well."

The Tigers had lost 17 of their previous 25 games and the division lead, which was 10 games before play on Aug. 8, was down to one game. But the Twins lost to Cleveland, 5-4, in 10 innings, and the Tigers' offense broke out with its biggest inning since scoring eight at Kansas City on May 24, 2004.

"It all starts over tomorrow," Leyland said. "We've got a good pitcher going in Nate [Robertson], and they've got Kris Benson, who has been pretty good."



at Cleveland 5, Minnesota 4: Rookie Ryan Garko's bouncer scored Franklin Gutierrez from third in the 10th inning. The Twins tied the score with a two-run ninth, a rally that kept Johan Santana unbeaten since July 9. But the Twins fell to 12-1 in games Santana has started since the All-Star break.

at Toronto 5, Tampa Bay 4: Aaron Hill hit a two-run homer in the 10th inning for the Blue Jays, who rallied from a 3-1 deficit in the ninth and a 4-3 deficit in the 10th.

Seattle 11, at Kansas City 8: Adrian Beltre had three hits, including a two-run homer, and drove in five runs for the Mariners, who rallied from a six-run deficit.

at Oakland 4, Chicago 2: Esteban Loaiza outpitched Jon Garland, who lost for only the second time in 17 starts.

Boston at New York: The game was postponed because of rain. The teams will make it up Sunday as part of their second consecutive day-night doubleheader.

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