Baltimore at Detroit

Detroit «00100010x270

Robertson delivers strong outing as Tigers edge Orioles

CBS wire reports

DETROIT -- Nate Robertson has not gotten a whole lot of run support this season from his Detroit Tigers teammates. Luckily for him, he ran into someone Saturday with the exact same problem.

Robertson pitched eight strong innings, outdueling Kris Benson and giving the Tigers a 2-0 victory over the Baltimore Orioles.

"Tonight was just going to be a pitcher's duel," Robertson said. "Benson threw a good ballgame, but we scratched out a couple runs and held on. To go out there in a game like this and perform like that is huge for our confidence."

The Tigers maintained their two-game lead over Minnesota in the AL Central, and now lead third-place Chicago by five games.

The Twins and White Sox would probably both have to pass the Tigers for Detroit to fall short of its first playoff berth in 19 years.

"I think we are paying attention to both of those teams," first baseman Sean Casey said. "Every game matters at this point -- every win and every loss."

The Tigers start a three-game series Monday night at Chicago.

"We've got five on them, but that's no big deal," Robertson said. "We still have them coming up, and there's still two weeks left. We have to focus."

Baltimore has lost 14 of 18.

Robertson (13-12) had his fourth impressive start in a row, allowing six hits and walking one. He has a 1.29 ERA since giving up 10 runs to the White Sox on Aug. 24, but has only gotten nine runs of support in his last six outings.

"He was tremendous again tonight," said Tigers manager Jim Leyland. "Benson was real good, too. We knew it was going to be a real good matchup and we were fortunate to win it."

Todd Jones pitched the ninth for his 36th save in 40 tries.

Benson (10-11) lost despite pitching his third complete game of the year. He gave up seven hits and three walks, striking out six.

"Give that other guy credit -- he pitched well too," Benson said. "There have been plenty of games where they haven't scored for me, but there have been plenty where they have. That just happens."

In Benson's last three starts, he is 0-1 despite a 2.35 ERA.

"He pitched a great game again, and we didn't score again," Baltimore manager Sam Perlozzo said. "He could easily have 16 wins this year -- he's had six games where he's pitched at least seven innings, given up no more than two runs and not gotten a win.

"That's a lot of hard luck."

Baltimore had a great scoring chance in the third after Corey Patterson's leadoff triple down the right-field line. But Robertson got Chris Gomez to pop out and retired David Newhan and Brian Roberts on routine grounders.

"We really needed to get something out of that inning," Perlozzo said. "When that happens, you just hope it doesn't come back to haunt you."

It did -- the Tigers took the lead in the bottom half. Casey and Brandon Inge led off with singles and with two outs, Ivan Rodriguez lined an RBI double.

The Orioles got a two-out double from Miguel Tejada in the fourth, but Robertson struck out Ramon Hernandez, and Baltimore left two runners on in the fifth.

The Tigers extended their lead in the seventh when Carlos Guillen led off with a walk and took third on a double by Matt Stairs, claimed off waivers from Texas on Friday. Benson intentionally walked Casey to load the bases and after Inge popped out, Infante hit a sacrifice fly.


  • Casey was thrown out stealing in the fifth inning, the first time that had happened to him in over four years. The slow-footed Casey had been successful in eight straight attempts since being caught by St. Louis' Mike Matheny on June 29, 2002, while playing for the Reds.
  • Baltimore needs to win Sunday and Thursday to avoid losing their second straight season series to the Tigers. The Tigers only won a single season series from the Orioles between 1995 and 2004.
  • Tigers reliever Joel Zumaya (wrist) said before the game that he was available after missing a week, but was not needed.
Copyright 2015 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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Detroit closer Todd Jones is pumped to earn his 36th  save in 40 attempts as the Tigers beat the Orioles.  (AP)
Detroit closer Todd Jones is pumped to earn his 36th save in 40 attempts as the Tigers beat the Orioles. (AP)

Players of the Game

N. Robertson
IP 8.0
H 6
ER 0
BB 1
K 5

I. Rodriguez
AB 3
R 0
H 1
HR 0

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Baltimore Orioles
Brian Roberts, 2B4000004 .291
Melvin Mora, 3B4010000 .275
Nick Markakis, RF4000001 .303
Miguel Tejada, SS3010100 .329
Ramon Hernandez, C4000032 .270
Kevin Millar, DH3010010 .260
Corey Patterson, CF3010011 .274
Chris Gomez, 1B3010001 .299
David Newhan, LF2000001 .255
   a- Fernando Tatis, PH1010000 .269
    Brandon Fahey, PR-LF0000000 .236
a-singled for Newhan in the 8th
2B - Miguel Tejada (35, Robertson)
3B - Corey Patterson (3, Robertson)
Team LOB - 5
Outfield Assists - Corey Patterson 1
DP - B. Roberts-Tejada-Gomez, Patterson-Gomez-Mora
Baltimore Orioles
Kris Benson (L,10-11) 8722360 4.54
IBB - Casey by Kris Benson
Pitches-Strikes - Kris Benson 103-63
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Kris Benson 6-8
Batters Faced - Kris Benson 30
Detroit Tigers
Curtis Granderson, CF4020022 .263
Ivan Rodriguez, C3011001 .295
Craig Monroe, LF3000123 .262
Magglio Ordonez, RF3000002 .295
Carlos Guillen, SS2100100 .312
Matt Stairs, DH3010010 .248
Sean Casey, 1B2020100 .277
Brandon Inge, 3B3110013 .247
Omar Infante, 2B2001002 .288
2B - Ivan Rodriguez (26, Benson), Matt Stairs (19, Benson)
SF - Omar Infante (2)
SH - Ivan Rodriguez (3)
RBI - Ivan Rodriguez (60), Omar Infante (23)
2-OUT RBI - Ivan Rodriguez (27)
CS - Sean Casey (1, 2nd base by Benson/Hernandez)
PK - Curtis Granderson (2, Benson)
Team LOB - 4
DP - Infante-Casey, Infante-Guillen-Casey
Detroit Tigers
Nate Robertson (W,13-12) 8600150 3.68
Todd Jones (S,36) 1000000 4.31
Pitches-Strikes - Nate Robertson 93-65, Todd Jones 12-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Nate Robertson 11-6, Todd Jones 3-0
Batters Faced - Nate Robertson 29, Todd Jones 3
Game Information
Attendance - 39030
Game Time - 2:14
Temperature - 67
Umpires - Home - Jeff Nelson, First Base - Adam Dowdy, Second Base - Tim Timmons, Third Base - Derryl Cousins