Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Tigers come way back to beat Indians

The Tigers were down 6-0 in the sixth inning against nemesis Paul Byrd and it looked like a sure loss to the reeling Indians. They broke up the shutout in the sixth on a double by Matt Joyce and a single by Edgar Renteria but they were still down 6-1. They then broke loose with a five run seventh with most of the damage coming off of reliever Rafael Betancourt. The key hits were a two run double by Carlos Guillen and a game tying homer to right field by rookie Matt Joyce. It was Joyce's third hit of the game. He had a four hit game a week ago in a win over Seattle.

The winning blow came in the bottom of the ninth off the bat of red hot Miguel Cabrera who hit a laser to left field for a two run walk off homer. Cabrera now has two walk homers and a walk off double this year. In the last five games, Miguel has gone 11 for 23 with 5 homers and 8 RBI.

Much of the credit for this one goes to the bullpen. After Eddie Bonine was rocked for 5 runs on 9 hits in 3 2/3 innings, Casey Fossum kept the the Tigers within striking distance with 3 1/3 strong innings. He got out of a jam in the fourth by getting the last out after Bonine left with two on base. He then created his own mess loading the bases with nobody out in the fifth but just when it looked like the game would get out of control, he struck out the side. In all, he allowed one run on three hits and struck out six.

Joel Zumaya then pitched a scoreless eighth and Todd Jones a scoreless ninth to keep it tied at six. Jones was helped out by Guillen who made two outstanding plays on rockets hit to the third baseman. Guillen did make an error earlier but he sure made up for it in the ninth. He has been a pleasant surprise at third in recent weeks.

The win gave the Tigers a two game sweep over the badly slumping Indians who have lost 10 in a row. The Bengals are 6 1/2 games behind the White Sox pending the outcome of their game with the Royals tonight. They currently lead the Royals 7-6 in the eighth inning. The Twins lost to the Red Sox today and are now three games behind. The Tigers have a crucial four game series with the Twins starting tomorrow. With the way the White Sox are playing , the Tigers really need to take three of four from Minnesota.

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