Detroit at Baltimore

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Verlander, Ordonez help Tigers end losing streak

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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BALTIMORE -- Rookie Justin Verlander put on quite a show for family and friends in his debut at Camden Yards.

His performance also made an impression on the Baltimore Orioles.

Verlander took a five-hitter into the seventh inning, Brandon Inge and Curtis Granderson hit successive homers in a four-run seventh, and the Detroit Tigers ended a three-game skid with a 6-3 victory Wednesday night.

Magglio Ordonez went 2-for-4 with a single and a double for the Tigers, but his streak of hitting a homer in consecutive games ended at four. The last Detroit player to homer in five consecutive games was Willie Horton in 1969.

Verlander (4-3) gave up three runs, seven hits and three walks in 6 1/3 innings. He struck out four, including Kevin Millar to escape a fourth-inning jam.

The small crowd of 15,548 included more than a dozen fans cheering solely for Verlander, a native and resident of nearby Virginia. His parents and girlfriend were among those who watched.

"Some of them were seeing me pitch in the majors for the first time. After the game started, I didn't want to look at where they were sitting," he said.

Verlander has gone at least six innings in six of his seven starts and owns an impressive 3.77 ERA.

"He was throwing 98 mph with good movement, a solid breaking ball and a changeup," Orioles infielder Chris Gomez said. "He's got a pretty good future ahead of him."

Brandon Fahey got a career-high three hits, including two off Verlander, but nevertheless was impressed by the rookie's savvy.

"He changed his pitches every at-bat," Fahey said. "And then, after you get two strikes, he's got such a hard fastball that it's hard to sit on an offspeed pitch."

Detroit led 2-1 before pulling away against Rodrigo Lopez (1-5) in the seventh. Chris Shelton walked and Craig Monroe singled before Inge hit his eighth homer. Two pitches later, Granderson chased Lopez with a shot to center.

"Things seemed like they were going pretty good, and then one inning turned everything around," Lopez said.

In the bottom half, Baltimore used two singles and a walk to load the bases against Verlander with one out. Joel Zumaya forced in a run by hitting Gomez with a pitch, and Miguel Tejada hit a sacrifice fly to make it 6-3.

Zumaya gave up a hit and a walk in the eighth, and Todd Jones got three outs for his seventh save.

"The kid pitched a good game and the old-timer (Jones) pitched well, too," Detroit manager Jim Leyland said.

The Orioles have lost six of seven and nine of 11. Baltimore was without third baseman Melvin Mora, who missed his first game of the season with a sore back, an injury he sustained in Tuesday night's win over Detroit.

Gomez hurt his left hand when hit by the pitch from Zumaya, left the game for a pinch-hitter in the ninth inning and likely won't be available until the weekend.

"It's pretty sore," Gomez said. "I tried to grip a bat and couldn't do it."

Lopez allowed six runs and eight hits in six-plus innings. He is winless in seven starts since opening day and has yielded at least four runs in every appearance this season.

"I can't believe this is happening, but it's true," Lopez said. "Mentally I have to be positive and keep pitching and keep fighting until things work for me."

Detroit took a 2-0 lead in the first. After missing four games with a sore back, Placido Polanco hit a one-out double and scored his 500th career run on a double by Ordonez. Carlos Guillen followed with an RBI single.

Baltimore got a run back in the fourth. Jay Gibbons doubled and Ramon Hernandez walked before Corey Patterson hit a two-out RBI single to put runners at the corners. Verlander then struck out Millar.

Notes

  • After the game, the Tigers optioned RHP Jordan Tata to Triple-A Toledo. RHP Roman Colon will join the team on Thursday.
  • Monroe's seventh-inning single snapped a 1-for-23 skid.
  • Lopez hasn't gotten past the seventh inning in five starts since April 14.
  • It was the second time this year that Inge and Granderson hit consecutive homers. The first was against Cleveland on April 14.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Players of the Game
Baltimore

B. Fahey
AB 5
R 0
H 3
HR 0
RBI 0
Detroit

B. Inge
AB 4
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 3
 

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Detroit Tigers
Curtis Granderson, CF5121011
Placido Polanco, 2B5120010
Ivan Rodriguez, C5000025
Magglio Ordonez, RF4121101
Carlos Guillen, SS4021021
Dmitri Young, DH4000004
Chris Shelton, 1B3100101
Craig Monroe, LF3110110
Brandon Inge, 3B4113011
Totals3761063814 
Batting
2B - Placido Polanco (, Lopez), Magglio Ordonez (, Lopez)
HR - Curtis Granderson (, Lopez), Brandon Inge (, Lopez)
RBI - Curtis Granderson (), Magglio Ordonez (), Carlos Guillen (), Brandon Inge 3 ()
2-OUT RBI - Magglio Ordonez (), Carlos Guillen ()
CS - Craig Monroe (, 2nd base by Birkins/Hernandez)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - Inge-Polanco-Shelton, Polanco-Shelton
Detroit Tigers
Justin Verlander (W,-) 6.1733340
Joel Zumaya (H,) 1.2100120
Todd Jones (S,) 1100010
HBP - Gomez (by Joel Zumaya)
WP - Joel Zumaya ()
Pitches-Strikes - Justin Verlander 99-59, Joel Zumaya 35-20, Todd Jones 12-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Justin Verlander 7-7, Joel Zumaya 1-2, Todd Jones 1-0
Batters Faced - Justin Verlander 28, Joel Zumaya 8, Todd Jones 3
Baltimore Orioles
Brandon Fahey, 2B5030010
Chris Gomez, 3B2011101
   a- Luis Matos, PH1000001
Miguel Tejada, SS4001022
Jay Gibbons, RF4110003
Ramon Hernandez, C3010110
Jeff Conine, 1B4010012
Corey Patterson, CF4011012
Kevin Millar, DH2100213
Nick Markakis, LF4110002
Totals333934716 
a-grounded into a double play for Gomez in the 9th
Batting
2B - Jay Gibbons (, Verlander)
SF - Miguel Tejada ()
RBI - Chris Gomez (), Miguel Tejada (), Corey Patterson ()
2-OUT RBI - Corey Patterson ()
Team LOB - 9
Fielding
DP - Tejada-Fahey-Conine
E - Chris Gomez (, misplayed grounder), Miguel Tejada (, misplayed grounder)
Baltimore Orioles
Rodrigo Lopez (L,-) 6866172
Sendy Rleal 1200100
Kurt Birkins 1.1000110
Julio Manon 0.2000000
Pitches-Strikes - Rodrigo Lopez 102-67, Sendy Rleal 16-9, Kurt Birkins 26-15, Julio Manon 3-3
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Rodrigo Lopez 5-7, Sendy Rleal 1-1, Kurt Birkins 1-2
Batters Faced - Rodrigo Lopez 28, Sendy Rleal 5, Kurt Birkins 5, Julio Manon 2
Game Information
Attendance - 15548
Game Time - 2:38
Temperature - 77
Umpires - Home - Gerry Davis, First Base - Brian Gorman, Second Base - Eric Cooper, Third Base - Bill Miller