MARK DUNCAN / AP Enlarge
CLEVELAND - The Cleveland Indians got needed offense from the bottom third of their lineup and finally beat the Detroit Tigers.
Andy Marte drove in three runs, Mark Grudzielanek had three hits and two RBIs, and Cleveland broke a 10-game losing streak against Detroit with a 7-4 victory yesterday. The Indians had lost five straight overall.
"It feels good to get a home win," manager Manny Acta said after Cleveland concluded a 2-6 homestand with its first victory over
Detroit since Aug. 2.
"We have not been getting enough out of the seventh, eighth, and ninth spots, so that was good," Acta said after Grudzielanek, Marte, and Lou Marson went a combined 5 for 9 with three runs and six RBIs.
Magglio Ordonez had two hits and two RBIs for Detroit, which couldn't overcome another rough outing by Max Scherzer. Austin Jackson had two hits and scored twice.
Ordonez doubled in Jackson and rookie Brennan Boesch hit a tying sacrifice fly in the fifth, but Cleveland went ahead in the bottom half before adding two more in the seventh.
Grudzielanek hit a tiebreaking RBI single off
Scherzer (1-3) in the fifth and singled in another run in the seventh to make it 6-4. Marte added a sacrifice fly for Cleveland's final run.
"The last month, we've been behind the 8-ball," Grudzielanek said of the Indians, who entered play yesterday second-last in the AL in scoring. "We're not giving up because of a bad month or bad week. We're going to start hitting."
Four relievers held the Tigers to two hits over the final four innings. Chris Perez worked the ninth for his fifth save in seven chances. The right-hander gave up a single and walk before retiring three straight.
Left-hander Tony Sipp struck out the side in the eighth after Kerry Wood retired Miguel Cabrera on a popup to end the seventh. Acta said Wood will be back in the closer's role for the opener of an eight-game trip in Kansas City tomorrow.
"I'm finally healthy," Wood said. "I had a better feel for the breaking ball today and pitched back-to-back days for the first time. I never reached that point in spring training."
Scherzer gave up five runs and nine hits in five innings. The right-hander has a 14.54 ERA over his last 13 innings.
"He was a little better," manager Jim Leyland said. "He threw a few more good changeups. He made a couple bad pitches, obviously."
Mitch Talbot (4-2) allowed four runs over five innings for his fourth win in five starts since April 16.
Cleveland scored four times in the second for a 4-1 lead. Russell Branyan drew a leadoff walk and went to third on a single by Grudzielanek. Marte, hitting .182, slammed a ball high off the wall in left-center that just missed being a home run and bounced back over the head of center fielder Jackson.
Scherzer was more upset at walking Branyan.
"That leadoff walk was a killer," he said. "I have to do a better job of managing those. Leadoff walks always score."
No. 9 hitter Lou Marson drove in Marte with an infield single and came around to score on a two-out infield single by Shin-Soo Choo. Marson has one RBI in 64 at-bats.
Cabrera hit an RBI single in the third to trim Cleveland's lead to 4-2.
It was Talbot's shortest start since he worked five innings in a 4-2 loss in his Indians debut April 10 in Detroit. The right-hander was acquired in a trade with Tampa Bay in December.
NOTES: SS Asdrubal Cabrera returned to the Indians lineup. He missed three games with a strained left quadriceps muscle. ... Jackson has hit safely in 27 of 30 career games, best by a Tigers rookie since Dale Alexander opened 27 of 30 in 1929. Jackson has 16 multihit games. ... Indians DH Travis Hafner went 1 for 2 with two walks and a hit-by-pitch. He has reached safely in 12 of his last 17 plate appearances.41.50436 -81.69046