CHICAGO -- Joe Crede and the Chicago White Sox let the rest of the American League know they are still in the playoff picture -- even without Magglio Ordonez and Frank Thomas.
Crede hit a two-run double in the seventh inning and a game-ending home run in the ninth to rally the White Sox over the Detroit Tigers 7-6 Saturday night.
The White Sox, already without Thomas, learned Friday that four-time All-Star Ordonez could miss the rest of the season because of an injured knee.
"The game tonight was big, it lets everybody know that we can come back," Crede said. "With our big bats out of the lineup right now, it gives us the confidence in the fact that we can come back from a deficit like that."
Chicago won its fourth straight overall, its sixth straight at home and moved ahead of Minnesota into the AL Central lead. The White Sox trailed 4-0 in the fifth inning and 6-2 in the seventh before coming back to send the Tigers to their sixth loss in eight games.
"It's just disappointing. You hope that when you have a lead like that you can hold onto it, but with this club, you've got to give them credit because they've done it more than once or twice," Tigers manager Alan Trammell said.
Chicago has 29 comeback victories this season and are 10 games over .500, which is a season high.
The White Sox scored three times in the seventh on Crede's opposite-field double off Jason Johnson and Willie Harris' sacrifice fly.
Carlos Lee walked against Esteban Yan leading off the eighth, took second on Carl Everett's grounder, advanced on a wild pitch, then tied it on Paul Konerko's sacrifice fly.
"They've done this before. They get a little momentum going, they get the crowd into it. We just couldn't stop them," Trammell said.
Crede homered with one out in the ninth on a 3-2 pitch from Ugueth Urbina (3-5), the fourth game-ending homer of Crede's career.
"You can't really describe how good it feels. I don't think there is a word that can describe it," Crede said. "The whole battle was getting a pitch that I wanted.
"I was looking for one pitch and fortunately I was able to get it."
Konerko and Jose Valentin also homered for Chicago, which has won eight in a row against division rivals. Damaso Marte (4-4) pitched the ninth for the win.
Carlos Guillen homered twice for Detroit, and Brandon Inge and Marcus Thames also homered.
Chicago starter Scott Schoeneweis gave up five runs and eight hits -- including three homers -- in six innings. Johnson allowed five runs and six hits in 6 2/3 innings.
Dmitri Young hit an RBI single in the first, and Guillen homered in the third to make it 2-0. Inge hit a two-run homer in the fourth, but Konerko's homer in the fifth cut the lead to 4-1.
Thames and Valentin exchanged solo homers in the sixth, and Guillen homered again in the seventh. It was his second multihomer game - he also did it May 31 against Kansas City.
The White Sox had their sixth home sellout of the season. ... The White Sox are 20-8 against AL Central opponents. ... Guillen was the first player to homer from both sides of the plate against the White Sox since Mark Bellhorn did it on June 30, 2002. ... Inge is hitting .369 (31-for-84) on the road this season, compared to .229 (25-for-109) at home.AP NEWS
The Associated Press News Service
Copyright 2004, The Associated Press, All Rights Reserved