Oakland at Detroit

W: R. Lugo (3-0) L: M. McBride (1-1)
HR: OAK - D. Murphy (3), J. Cust (18)   DET - G. Sheffield (24), M. Thames (12)

Athletics waste seven-run lead, Cust makes up with granny, 7 RBI

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports

DETROIT -- A year ago, the Tigers rode a hot bullpen all the way to the World Series. This season, their relievers might be the biggest reason they don't make it back.

Jack Cust hit a grand slam and drove in seven runs, and the Oakland Athletics rallied after blowing a seven-run lead to beat Detroit 16-10 on Friday.

The Tigers' bullpen gave up nine runs, and Detroit lost for the seventh time in nine games while falling to 11-18 since the All-Star break.

"We can't keep going like this," Tigers manager Jim Leyland said. "This team is battling, and I'm very proud of them, but this was a terrible night."

With Fernando Rodney and Joel Zumaya both missing large parts of the season with injuries, Leyland can't really blame his ragtag relief corps.

"With everything we've gone through, we're lucky to just be where we're at," he said. "You have to guard against making excuses, but we're fortunate to be in this."

Travis Buck had four hits, scored three times and drove in three runs for Oakland. Donnie Murphy also homered and drove in three runs.

"This was a crazy game," Cust said. "Detroit's offense is fun to watch, and they scored a lot of runs tonight. Luckily, so did we."

Detroit scored five times in the bottom of the fourth on a solo homer by Gary Sheffield and a grand slam by Marcus Thames, then took a 9-8 lead with three more in the fifth.

The Athletics, though, quickly restored the seven-run margin.

Macay McBride (0-1) retired the first hitter of the sixth, but hit Buck before walking the next two batters.

"We preach selective aggression all through the minors and that leads to walks," Oakland manager Bob Geren said. "It works better when you get home runs too."

Cust provided just that, hitting a 429-foot line drive to center field to give Oakland a 12-9 lead.

"I hit that one pretty good," Cust said. "I didn't even feel the ball make contact, and that's when you know you got all of it."

Zach Miner replaced McBride and Mark Ellis doubled, Mark Kotsay was intentionally walked and Marco Scutaro and Murphy hit RBI singles to make it 14-9. Kurt Suzuki struck out for the second time in the inning, but Buck hit a two-run single, his fourth hit of the game.

"I don't know what the answer is," said the Tigers' Jason Grilli, who allowed one run and has an 8.53 ERA in his last six games. "We're all trying to pull our weight, so this is unfortunate."

Ruddy Lugo (3-0) got the win pitching two innings of relief.

Detroit scored two more in the bottom of the sixth on Curtis Granderson's 18th triple and a Placido Polanco sacrifice fly.

Buck had a chance to hit for the cycle, but grounded out in the ninth when he needed a homer.

"I'm not a home-run hitter, but I went up there swinging as hard as I could," he said. "Rodney just blew my bat apart."

Oakland took a 1-0 lead in the first on Nick Swisher's sacrifice fly, then added two more in the second on Murphy's homer. Detroit got one back in the bottom of the inning, but Cust's bases-loaded double highlighted a four-run third that gave the Athletics a 7-1 lead.

Buck's RBI double in the fourth gave Oakland their first seven-run lead.

Neither starter was involved in the decision. Oakland's Joe Blanton gave up nine runs in four-plus innings, while Jordan Tata gave up seven runs in two-plus innings.


  • Oakland's eight-run sixth matched a season high, set April 20 at Texas, and was the biggest inning allowed by Detroit this season.
  • Granderson's 18 triples are the most by a Tiger since Barney McCosky had 19 in 1940. Sam Crawford has the franchise record of 26 in 1914.
  • Blanton has a career 9.67 ERA in five starts against the Tigers, but has managed a 2-2 record.
  • The loss was just the second of McBride's 131-game career.
Copyright 2017 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.
Jack Cust senses it's a high and far one, and it is, for a grand salami and four of his seven RBI. (AP)
Jack Cust senses it's a high and far one, and it is, for a grand salami and four of his seven RBI. (AP)

Players of the Game

M. Ordonez
AB 5
R 2
H 3
HR 0

J. Cust
AB 5
R 2
H 2
HR 1

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Oakland Athletics
Travis Buck, RF5343000 .288
Shannon Stewart, LF5220112 .299
Nick Swisher, 1B2201312 .249
Jack Cust, DH5227002 .265
Mark Ellis, 2B5110013 .266
Mark Kotsay, CF4100121 .222
Marco Scutaro, 3B4222110 .241
Donnie Murphy, SS5223011 .250
Kurt Suzuki, C5110022 .235
2B - Travis Buck (20, Grilli), Shannon Stewart (14, Tata), Jack Cust (12, Tata), Mark Ellis (22, Miner), Marco Scutaro (7, Grilli), Kurt Suzuki (5, Grilli)
3B - Travis Buck (5, Tata)
HR - Jack Cust (18, McBride), Donnie Murphy (3, Tata)
SF - Nick Swisher (4)
RBI - Travis Buck 3 (34), Nick Swisher (57), Jack Cust 7 (59), Marco Scutaro 2 (25), Donnie Murphy 3 (12)
2-OUT RBI - Travis Buck 2 (20), Marco Scutaro (17), Donnie Murphy 2 (7)
SB - Donnie Murphy (1, 2nd base off Miner/Rabelo)
Team LOB - 5
Oakland Athletics
Joe Blanton 4799122 4.10
Ruddy Lugo (W,3-0) 2211100 8.84
Andrew Brown 2000020 1.89
Huston Street 1000010 3.04
IBB - Thames by Ruddy Lugo
HBP - Polanco (by Joe Blanton), Guillen (by Ruddy Lugo)
Pitches-Strikes - Joe Blanton 75-52, Ruddy Lugo 37-19, Andrew Brown 28-17, Huston Street 13-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Joe Blanton 5-5, Ruddy Lugo 4-2, Andrew Brown 1-3, Huston Street 1-1
Batters Faced - Joe Blanton 21, Ruddy Lugo 10, Andrew Brown 6, Huston Street 3
Detroit Tigers
Curtis Granderson, CF5220010 .300
Placido Polanco, 2B3101000 .347
Gary Sheffield, DH5222010 .291
Magglio Ordonez, RF5232000 .351
Carlos Guillen, SS3110001 .310
Sean Casey, 1B3101100 .290
Marcus Thames, LF3114110 .259
Mike Rabelo, C4000023 .274
Omar Infante, 3B4000003 .263
2B - Magglio Ordonez 2 (41, Blanton, R. Lugo), Carlos Guillen (23, Blanton)
3B - Curtis Granderson (18, R. Lugo)
HR - Gary Sheffield (24, Blanton), Marcus Thames (12, Blanton)
SF - Placido Polanco (3)
RBI - Placido Polanco (51), Gary Sheffield 2 (69), Magglio Ordonez 2 (96), Sean Casey (44), Marcus Thames 4 (36)
Team LOB - 3
Detroit Tigers
Jordan Tata 2577211 7.71
Jason Grilli 1.1311120 5.91
Macay McBride (L,1-1) 2144231 4.96
Zach Miner 2.2544120 3.77
Fernando Rodney 1000010 4.88
IBB - Kotsay by Zach Miner
HBP - Buck (by Macay McBride)
Pitches-Strikes - Jordan Tata 50-28, Jason Grilli 31-19, Macay McBride 43-22, Zach Miner 55-35, Fernando Rodney 10-5
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jordan Tata 3-2, Jason Grilli 1-1, Macay McBride 1-2, Zach Miner 3-3, Fernando Rodney 2-0
Batters Faced - Jordan Tata 13, Jason Grilli 8, Macay McBride 10, Zach Miner 14, Fernando Rodney 3
Game Information
Attendance - 40922
Game Time - 3:19
Temperature - 76
Umpires - Home - Ted Barrett, First Base - Mark Carlson, Second Base - Angel Hernandez, Third Base - Derryl Cousins