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BATTERYMATES END BENGAL SLIDE.....TIGERS 4, Texas 1, W 7/21/10  
Posted on: 07-21-2010

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>>caption LAIRD WENT YARD AGAINST
HIS FORMER TEAM WEDNESDAY NITE<<

@ COMERICA PARK:

    The Tiger battery jump-started
Detroit Wednesday night to snap
the team's season-high seven game
losing streak.
    Catcher Gerald Laird hit a B-2nd/
2rHR (#3) 400-ft into the LField lower
bowl and pitcher Max Scherzer threw
seven shutout innings to for a 4-1
win over Texas.
    Detroit salvaged the final game
of their 3-game series with the AL-
West leading Rangers. The Tigs stayed tied with the Minnesota Twins
(Wednesday matinee winners) for second place in the AL-Central.    
    Scherzer (W, 7-7) scattered 4-H & 3-W with 5-K and threw 75 of his
season-high 123 pitches for strikes. Scherzer never faced more than
four batters in any inning and recorded his sixth straight Comerica Park
win.
    Just before Scherzer was removed from the game the Tigers added a
pair of B-7th insurance runs. Ramon Santiago and Austin Jackson both
singled to open the inning. Magglio Ordonez delivered a 1-out RBI-1B and
Miguel Cabrera added a ac-fly.
    Phil Coke delivered a scoreless T-8th before Tiger closer Jose Valverde
ran into a bump in the potential shutout road in a non-save situation T-9th.
    Valverde walked lead-off man Ian KInsler, hit Vladimir Guerrero with a
pitch and then wild pitched both up a base. KInsler scored and Guerrero went
to third on a Josh Hamilton RBI-G'out to SStop. Valverde then struck-out Nelson
Cruz swinging and got David Murphy to groundout to 2Base.
    Onetime Tiger Colby Lewis took the Texas defeat (9-6). In his second stint
with the Rangers bookending his Tiger tenure, Lewis was tagged for 4-R/4-ER
on 9-H & 2-W with 5-K.  
    Jackson was 3-for-4 and Laird 2-for-4 as the only batters in the ballgame
with multiple hits.

    TEX     1-4-2, 6-LOB       (L) Lewis, 9-6
    DET     4-10-1, 8-LOB     (W) Scherzer, 7-7

QUOTEBOOK...

TIGERS MGR JIM LEYLAND:   "[Scherzer] pitched a great ballgame. That's what
it normally takes to break a string like this..He's using his other pitches to go
along with that excellent fastball. The velocity is better. The offspeed pitches
are better. The slider is better and the changeup is very good. And he's using
them all...I was worried [in the T-9th]. That's not like [Valverde], but he bounced
back...[The early homerun] was important for us, and it was also important for
Gerald. Hopefully, that will get him going."

TIGERS SP MAX SCHERZER:   "I came to the park today knowing I wanted to end this
losing streak. It's been seven games...I didn't pitch well [in Detroit's first game after
the All-Star break at Cleveland last Friday] and I came with the mentality that I was
going to end it...Pitch well. Just execute."

TIGERS RP JOSE VALVERDE:   "The save right now doesn't matter. I think everybody
wants to see the team win."

EXTRA INNINGS:

    Kinsler extended his hitting streak to 14 games.
    Jackson has hit safely in 18 of his last 20 games.
    Tiger rookie Brennan Boesch was held hitless for a second straight game,
is just 3-for-29 and has no homers and 1-RBI since the All-Star break. The
first slump of Boesch's big league career will get him a day of rest Thursday.
    Valverde was scored upon for a second consecutive appearance, the first
time that's happened in his first year as a Tiger.  
    After a bad outing in his one day recall Tuesday, reliever Casey Fien was
farmed back to 3A Toledo by Detroit Wednesday. Called up from the Mud Hens
was INF Scott Sizemore, who failed in an early season trial as Detroit's starting
2Bman. Sizemore has limited experience at 3Base and is viewed as a likely fill-in
for Brandon Inge (broken left hand). However, Don Kelly started at the hot corner
for Detroit for a second straight game Wednesday. When Kelly switched to LField
late in the game Danny Worth was inserted at third.
    Former Tigers MGR Ralph Houk (1974--78) died piecefully of natural causes
at age 90 in Winter Haven, FL Wednesday. Houk is best known as for becoming
the first ever manager to win the World Series in his first two years as a big league
skipper with the New York Yankees in 1961-62. The onetime 1940s & '50s Yankee
back-up catcher served two stints as Bronx bench boss and was the team's GM in
between. Houk also was field manager for the Boston Red Sox. Houk was known as
"The Major" because he rose from enlisted man to that rank during military service
in World War II. Houk won 1,619 of the 3,157 (.514-%) MLB games he managed. His
only Tiger winning season was his last, but Houk effectively transformed the over-aged
leftovers of the 1968 World Series Champions to set the table for the 1984 WS title.
HoFamer Al Kaline and All-Star Bill Freehan retired, Norm Cash was released and
popular veterans like Mickey Lolich, Willie Horton and Jim Northrup were all traded
during Houk's Detroit regime, but future stars Jack Morris, Alan Trammell, Lou
Whitaker and Lance Parrish all arrived from the minors to be tutored by Houk.
    The Tigers open a 4-game home series with Toronto by hosting the Blue Jays
in a Thursday matinee. Justin Verlander (11-5, 3.86) of Detroit and Ricky Romero
(7-6, 3.50) of the Jays are Thursday's probables.

                                                       ###        
         
   

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