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Detroit at Kansas City

Scoreboard
Detroit «03020003513150
Kansas City6001010008141

Heroics by Rodriguez keep Royals in tailspin

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
  •  

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Ivan Rodriguez was supposed to get a day off. Unfortunately for Kansas City, the Tigers catcher had to play.

Rodriguez drove in five runs in the final two innings and Detroit rallied from a six-run deficit to beat Kansas City 13-8 Thursday, handing the Royals their 13th straight loss.

Vance Wilson was scheduled to catch the finale of the four-game series to give Rodriguez a rest, but Wilson stepped on a ball Wednesday night.

"I'm ready to play every day," Rodriguez said. "Vance got hurt and it's my job to go back there and go to work."

Rodriguez hit a two-run triple in the eighth to erase Kansas City's 8-6 lead and a three-run homer in Detroit's five-run ninth. Craig Monroe, who went 4-for-4, and Marcus Thames started the ninth with solo homers off Elmer Dessens (2-5).

"I felt a little tired at the end," Rodriguez said. "But I just put that aside."

Making KC's loss sting even worse was the fact they knocked Mike Maroth out of the game in the first inning with three straight home runs and seized a 6-0 lead.

"We've done this before. This isn't anything new," Royals manager Buddy Bell said.

"I don't know how many games during the stretch where we've done exactly what we did today."

The 13-game losing streak is the second-longest ever for Kansas City, which lost 19 in a row last season. The Royals are a major league-worst 10-35 and drawing comparisons to some of the most terrible teams in history.

Only Boston in 1932, Baltimore in 1988 and Washington in 1904 had worse records (9-36) after 45 games.

"I've kind of run out of things to say," said Doug Mientkiewicz, who had one of the first-inning homers. "There's really not much to talk about."

Has the ineptitude become baffling?

"We passed that point about three weeks ago," Mientkiewicz said.

Detroit scored eight runs in the final two innings to complete their first four-game sweep in Kansas City. Thames also hit a two-run homer for the Tigers, who have won 13 of their last 14 games.

"I'm seriously proud of our team today," said Monroe, who also scored four runs. "It would have been easy to say, `We've won three games. We're down 6-0. It's over. Let's pack up the tent.'

"But to see our team come together and keep battling is a good feeling. It's a good feeling to walk away with a 'W."'

Tony Graffanino, Angel Berroa and Mientkiewicz hit consecutive home runs against Maroth in the first inning.

But Rodriguez's two-run triple off Ambiorix Burgos with two outs in the eighth tied it at 8 and denied Bobby Keppel the win in his major league debut.

Keppel, after holding the Tigers scoreless for three innings of relief, gave up a leadoff single to Monroe in the eighth and handed Burgos an 8-5 lead.

With two out, Curtis Granderson singled for his third hit and Placido Polanco stroked an RBI single ahead of Rodriguez's triple.

When Keppel was replaced in the eighth, the crowd gave a standing ovation to what they thought would be the first winning Kansas City pitcher since May 10. He went 3 1/3 innings and gave up one run and two hits with a walk and four strikeouts.

After Bobby Seay walked Shane Costa with one out in the bottom of the eighth, Detroit's Joel Zumaya (3-0) struck out Reggie Sanders with a fastball clocked at 101 mph and got Emil Brown on a liner to left to keep the teams tied at 8.

Martha's rough outing started with Esteban German's leadoff single and a popout by Costa.

Then, in succession, Reggie Sanders and Emil Brown doubled ahead of the three homers. Maroth recorded just one out, allowing six runs and six hits. His ERA, third in the AL when the game began, jumped from 2.45 to 3.56. Since 2002, he had beaten the Royals nine times.

"I did not think that game was over at 6-0, not the way that ball was flying," Detroit manager Jim Leyland said. "I'm real proud of them. We could have packed it in."

Notes

  • The Royals optioned RHP Leo Nunez to Triple-A Omaha and replaced him with Keppel.
  • The last time KC hit three straight home runs was May 31, 2002, at Texas by Carlos Beltran, Mike Sweeney and Joe Randa.
  • Jack Hannahan made his major league debut at first base for Detroit.
  • It was a tough day for home plate umpire Chuck Meriwether. Twice he had to back away and regroup after being hit by balls behind the plate.
 
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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On a day he was supposed to be off, Ivan Rodriguez hits a triple, homer and drives in five runs.  (AP)
On a day he was supposed to be off, Ivan Rodriguez hits a triple, homer and drives in five runs. (AP)

Players of the Game
Detroit

I. Rodriguez
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 5
Detroit

C. Monroe
AB 4
R 4
H 4
HR 1
RBI 1
 
Detroit Tigers
Curtis Granderson, CF6241000 .276
Placido Polanco, 2B4012011 .299
    Ramon Santiago, PR-2B1100001 .206
Ivan Rodriguez, C4125211 .308
Carlos Guillen, SS4010213 .315
Jack Hannahan, 1B6000004 .000
    Chris Shelton, 1B0000000 .309
Omar Infante, DH4100111 .311
Craig Monroe, LF4441100 .247
Marcus Thames, RF4323112 .309
Brandon Inge, 3B5111011 .230
Totals421315137614 
Batting
2B - Carlos Guillen (15, Keppel)
3B - Ivan Rodriguez (2, Burgos)
HR - Ivan Rodriguez (3, Sisco), Craig Monroe (10, Dessens), Marcus Thames 2 (8, D. Bautista, Dessens)
RBI - Curtis Granderson (21), Placido Polanco 2 (16), Ivan Rodriguez 5 (20), Craig Monroe (28), Marcus Thames 3 (11), Brandon Inge (29)
2-OUT RBI - Placido Polanco (4), Ivan Rodriguez 5 (11)
Team LOB - 10
Detroit Tigers
Mike Maroth 0.1666003 3.56
Roman Colon 5.1522331 3.60
Jason Grilli 0.1100000 4.50
Bobby Seay 1.1100100 2.53
Joel Zumaya (W,3-0) 1.2100130 3.22
WP - Jason Grilli (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Mike Maroth 27-18, Roman Colon 76-47, Jason Grilli 7-4, Bobby Seay 25-14, Joel Zumaya 37-23
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Roman Colon 1-11, Bobby Seay 3-1
Batters Faced - Mike Maroth 7, Roman Colon 23, Jason Grilli 2, Bobby Seay 6, Joel Zumaya 7
Kansas City Royals
Esteban German, CF5231010 .394
Shane Costa, RF3000203 .293
Reggie Sanders, DH4220112 .238
Emil Brown, LF5123003 .248
Tony Graffanino, 3B5122012 .232
Angel Berroa, SS5121013 .245
Doug Mientkiewicz, 1B5121011 .257
John Buck, C4010001 .255
   a- Aaron Guiel, PH0000100 .195
Andres Blanco, 2B3000102 .154
   b- Matt Stairs, PH1000012 .224
Totals4081485619 
a-walked for Buck in the 9th
b-struck out for Blanco in the 9th
Batting
2B - Reggie Sanders (8, Maroth), Emil Brown 2 (12, Maroth, Grilli), Angel Berroa (9, Zumaya), Doug Mientkiewicz (10, Seay)
HR - Esteban German (1, Colon), Tony Graffanino (3, Maroth), Angel Berroa (3, Maroth), Doug Mientkiewicz (1, Maroth)
RBI - Esteban German (7), Emil Brown 3 (20), Tony Graffanino 2 (13), Angel Berroa (14), Doug Mientkiewicz (13)
2-OUT RBI - Emil Brown (7)
CS - Reggie Sanders (3, 2nd base by Colon/Rodriguez)
Team LOB - 10
Fielding
DP - Berroa-Mientkiewicz
E - Angel Berroa (7, )
Kansas City Royals
Denny Bautista 3.2554421 4.55
Bob Keppel 3.1211140 2.70
Ambiorix Burgos (BS,5) 0.2322100 7.23
Elmer Dessens (L,2-5) 0.2444002 5.25
Andrew Sisco 0.2111101 7.50
IBB - Guillen by Ambiorix Burgos
HBP - Polanco (by Denny Bautista)
Pitches-Strikes - Denny Bautista 74-40, Bob Keppel 43-25, Ambiorix Burgos 17-10, Elmer Dessens 24-16, Andrew Sisco 13-5
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Denny Bautista 5-4, Bob Keppel 4-2
Batters Faced - Denny Bautista 21, Bob Keppel 13, Ambiorix Burgos 6, Elmer Dessens 6, Andrew Sisco 4
Game Information
Attendance - 11488
Game Time - 3:37
Temperature - 82
Umpires - Home - Chuck Meriwether, First Base - Brian O'Nora, Second Base - Phil Cuzzi, Third Base - Jerry Crawford