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Tigers' eighth-inning rally the antidote for D-Backs

CBSSports.com wire reports
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DETROIT -- Don Kelly entered the game as a pinch-hitter and batted twice before the inning was over.

It was an unusual experience for the Detroit utilityman -- and a sign that the Tigers' offense is beginning to live up to its potential.

Miguel Cabrera hit a go-ahead single and the Tigers scored seven runs with two outs in the eighth to beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 8-3 on Sunday. Kelly started the rally with a one-out single with the Tigers down a run. By the time he came to the plate again, Detroit led 7-2.

"It doesn't happen too often, but we like it when it does," Kelly said.

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Detroit was playing in front of its third home sellout of the season - the team retired former manager Sparky Anderson's No. 11 before the game. Jhonny Peralta gave the Tigers a 1-0 lead in the second with his 12th homer, but the Tigers trailed 2-1 until their big eighth inning.

Kelly singled off reliever Aaron Heilman (4-1). After Austin Jackson struck out, Casper Wells drew a walk. David Hernandez then came on and didn't retire any of the four batters he faced.

He walked Magglio Ordonez on four pitches to load the bases for the always-dangerous Cabrera, who appeared to get jammed but managed to line a two-run single to left. Hernandez then gave up RBI singles to Victor Martinez and Peralta.

"We never quit, that's for sure," Martinez said.

And they didn't stop. Brandon Inge hit a two-run single off Bryan Shaw to make it 7-2, and Kelly -- batting again -- reached on an error, with another run scoring.

Al Alburquerque (5-1) pitched 1 1/3 innings of scoreless relief for Detroit.

"We played a tough game, but they've got a great offense and they got everything rolling all at once," Arizona outfielder Chris Young said. "That's why you have to get all 27 outs."

The Tigers are averaging 5.1 runs a game in June. Cabrera, Peralta and Martinez have hit well all season, and Ordonez is showing signs of turning around a poor start.

"We hit some of them good, some of them not so good - but wherever we hit them, they found a gap, found a hole," manager Jim Leyland said. "That was the big thing. Miguel had a big two-out hit, that's golden. That's what he's good at. The other guys kind of picked up on it and we added some insurance and had a good win after what looked like it could be a potentially tough day."

Arizona wasted a fine start by Joe Saunders, who allowed a run and four hits in seven innings. He struck out eight and walked one and has thrown at least six innings in 11 consecutive starts.

Arizona scored twice in the seventh to take a 2-1 lead. Young led off with a double and Miguel Montero followed with a tying single. Detroit starter Brad Penny got the next two outs on popups, but Gerardo Parra hit a single and Ryan Roberts followed with another to put the Diamondbacks ahead.

Roberts was in the starting lineup only because Melvin Mora was a late scratch with a bad back.

Penny went 6 2/3 innings, allowing two runs and eight hits with a walk and two strikeouts.

"Thank God they took Saunders out," Penny said. "He threw a great game. He was making pitches with everything - pitching in and out, up and down and locating his off-speed stuff."

Alburquerque, who has been outstanding all season, relieved Penny with two on in the seventh. He allowed a walk to load the bases, then struck out Stephen Drew to end the threat.

Alburquerque gave up two hits in the eighth but worked out of that jam, too. He lowered his ERA to 1.95. He has struck out 46 hitters in 27 2/3 innings.

Notes

  • Montero and Roberts had three hits each for Arizona, and Peralta had three for the Tigers.
  • Detroit 2B Carlos Guillen (left knee) is scheduled to start a rehabilitation assignment with Class-A Lakeland on Monday.
  • Jackson struck out twice in the eighth inning and four times in the game.
 
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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The Tigers celebrate in the dugout after Don Kelly scores on a Miguel Cabrera single in Detroit's big eighth inning. (Getty Images)
The Tigers celebrate in the dugout after Don Kelly scores on a Miguel Cabrera single in Detroit's big eighth inning. (Getty Images)

Players of the Game
Detroit

J. Peralta
AB 4
R 2
H 3
HR 1
RBI 2
Arizona

M. Montero
AB 4
R 1
H 3
HR 0
RBI 1
 
Arizona Diamondbacks
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Willie Bloomquist, 2B4010101 .260
Stephen Drew, SS3000213 .271
Justin Upton, RF5021002 .305
Chris Young, CF5120003 .257
Miguel Montero, C4131000 .282
Wily Mo Pena, DH4000024 .174
Xavier Nady, 1B4000003 .259
Gerardo Parra, LF4010010 .276
Ryan Roberts, 3B4131000 .257
Totals37312334  
Batting
2B - Chris Young (21, Penny)
RBI - Justin Upton (40), Miguel Montero (39), Ryan Roberts (33)
2-OUT RBI - Justin Upton (18), Ryan Roberts (15)
SB - Willie Bloomquist (8, 2nd base off Penny/Martinez), Chris Young (9, 3rd base off Alburquerque/Martinez), Miguel Montero (1, 2nd base off Alburquerque/Martinez)
CS - Ryan Roberts (5, 2nd base by Penny/Martinez)
Team LOB - 10
Fielding
DP - Roberts-Nady
E - Ryan Roberts (7, Misplayed grounder)
Arizona Diamondbacks
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Joe Saunders 7411181 4.14
Aaron Heilman (H,5; L,4-1) 0.2122110 6.99
David Hernandez (BS,2)0344100 3.50
Bryan Shaw 0.1210010 4.15
Pitches-Strikes - Joe Saunders 103-63, Aaron Heilman 18-8, David Hernandez 15-6, Bryan Shaw 14-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Joe Saunders 2-10, Aaron Heilman 1-0, Bryan Shaw 1-0
Batters Faced - Joe Saunders 25, Aaron Heilman 4, David Hernandez 4, Bryan Shaw 4
Detroit Tigers
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Austin Jackson, CF4000143 .248
Casper Wells, RF3100111 .256
Magglio Ordonez, DH3110111 .186
Miguel Cabrera, 1B4122000 .330
Victor Martinez, C4111002 .333
Jhonny Peralta, SS4232010 .308
Brennan Boesch, LF4110011 .299
    Ramon Santiago, 2B0000000 .209
Brandon Inge, 3B4012010 .208
Ryan Raburn, 2B2000010 .199
   a- Don Kelly, PH-LF2110000 .266
Totals348107310  
a-singled for Raburn in the 8th
Batting
HR - Jhonny Peralta (12, Saunders)
RBI - Miguel Cabrera 2 (52), Victor Martinez (44), Jhonny Peralta 2 (45), Brandon Inge 2 (14)
2-OUT RBI - Miguel Cabrera 2 (20), Victor Martinez (17), Jhonny Peralta (15), Brandon Inge 2 (8)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
DP - Raburn-Peralta-Cabrera
Detroit Tigers
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Brad Penny 6.2822120 4.66
Al Alburquerque (W,5-1) 1.1200120 1.95
Charlie Furbush 0.2211100 2.75
Jose Valverde 0.1000000 2.51
Pitches-Strikes - Brad Penny 89-57, Al Alburquerque 25-15, Charlie Furbush 19-13, Jose Valverde 1-1
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Brad Penny 7-9, Al Alburquerque 1-1
Batters Faced - Brad Penny 27, Al Alburquerque 7, Charlie Furbush 5, Jose Valverde 1
Game Information
Attendance - 41036
Game Time - 3:06
Temperature - 73
Umpires - Home - Chris Guccione, First Base - Mark Carlson, Second Base - Mike Everitt, Third Base - Mike Muchlinski