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Published: Saturday, 4/16/2011 - Updated: 3 years ago

Tigers make Athletics pay for errors

BY JANIE McCAULEY
AP BASEBALL WRITER
Detroit's Rick Porcello works against the Oakland Athletics during the first inning. He gave up one run and seven hits in six innings with four strikeouts. Detroit's Rick Porcello works against the Oakland Athletics during the first inning. He gave up one run and seven hits in six innings with four strikeouts.
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OAKLAND — Jim Leyland received a pile of five new cigars on his clubhouse desk and a celebratory bottle of champagne each from his general manager and coaching staff. The calls of congratulations began flooding in, too.

Leyland stuck to his usual postgame choice of cigarettes, then the no-nonsense skipper praised his players for his latest milestone.

Brennan Boesch hit a go-ahead two-run double with the bases loaded in the 10th inning and the Detroit Tigers rallied to beat the Oakland Athletics 8-4 on Friday night for Leyland's 1,500th career managerial win.

"I wouldn't have gotten this win tonight if I didn't have the players. It's all about the players and it always will be," Leyland said.

Miguel Cabrera hit a tying solo homer leading off the ninth against fill-in closer Brian Fuentes (0-2), who blew his first save in six chances and then loaded the bases with one out in the 10th.

The A's defense didn't help his cause, committing three errors in Detroit's seven-run 10th to raise their majors-leading total to 16. That includes seven in the last four games.

Leyland became the 19th major league manager to reach 1,500 wins, doing so on his first attempt.

Detroit Tigers manager Jim Leyland watches the action against the Oakland Athletics. Detroit Tigers manager Jim Leyland watches the action against the Oakland Athletics.
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"I'm just getting old, that's probably what that means," Leyland said.

Boesch finished with three hits for Detroit, which won its fourth straight.

Brayan Villarreal (1-0) recorded two outs in the ninth for the win. Oakland scored three in the 10th but still fell short.

Victor Martinez added an insurance run in the 10th with an RBI single, then two more runs came in on third baseman Andy LaRoche's wild throw home.

Fuentes, who has been Oakland's ninth-inning option in place of injured 2009 Rookie of the Year closer Andrew Bailey, was tagged for six runs, three earned.

"I'm just trying to get on base there. You have to have the confidence in yourself to do it every time you come to the plate," Cabrera said.

The Tigers turned double plays in each of the first two innings and again in the ninth on the way to winning their fourth straight at the Coliseum.

A's starter Brandon McCarthy struck out seven in 6 2-3 shutout innings and walked only his second batter in three starts, but David DeJesus' RBI single wasn't enough to hold up for the A's a night after being shut out for the first time on a three-hitter by Phil Coke and three relievers in a 3-0 Detroit win.

McCarthy showed again his value at the back end of a talented young rotation. He struck out seven or more for the seventh time in his career and first since May 13, 2009, for Texas against Seattle.

But the defense was awful.

"A couple of freak little plays in the infield that happened and we were able to blow it open," Leyland said.

A night after three of Oakland's four pitchers combined to allow a season-high 11 walks, six of those by Gio Gonzalez, McCarthy found the plate. Five of the six hits he allowed came with two outs, and he was able to keep the Tigers off balance before the bullpen fizzled. The A's are 1-4 at home so far.

"The defense will be good when it's all said and done," manager Bob Geren said. "It wasn't even a bad game, it was a bad inning. ... We need to score more runs and make it where every single pitch is not that tense, is not that tight."

McCarthy, who earned the A's No. 5 job in the rotation out of spring training after a tough competition, was in position to win back-to-back starts in the majors for the first time since September 2009.

Righty reliever Al Alburquerque made his major league debut for the Tigers in the seventh a day after being called up from Triple-A Toledo. He struck out three and allowed a single to Kurt Suzuki in his first two innings, then allowed Willingham's leadoff walk in the ninth.

Daniel Schlereth relieved and retired Hideki Matsui on a popup before Villarreal entered.

Matsui stranded five baserunners in his 0-for-4 night.

Don Kelly doubled with two outs in the fourth, the Tigers' 14th straight game with at least one double and their longest such streak to begin a season since also doing so in 14 in a row in 1970.

Tigers starter Rick Porcello made significant progress in six solid innings after allowing five runs on nine hits in five innings in each of his previous two starts.

Detroit pitchers haven't allowed a home run in their last eight games, matching the club's longest such streak since an eight-game run June 3-11, 1981.

NOTES: Struggling leadoff hitter Austin Jackson was out of Detroit's starting lineup one night after going hitless in four at-bats while dropping his average to .184. The Tigers CF took extra batting practice. ... Tigers RHP Ryan Perry, out since April 5 with an infected eye, gave up three hits and two earned runs in 1 1-3 innings with one strikeout in a rehab outing for Triple-A Toledo. He threw 27 pitches, 20 for strikes and left after giving up consecutive one-out singles in the seventh. ... SS Jhonny Peralta also didn't start because of his 1-for-18 record against McCarthy. He pinch-hit in the 10th. ... Bailey (strained right forearm) is set to throw long toss Saturday followed by a side session Sunday. ... Oakland RHP Michael Wuertz (hamstring) will pitch one inning for Class-A Stockton on Saturday. ... Cabrera received a continuance for a routine court date in his DUI and resisting arrest case until June 10. Cabrera requested it and prosecutors agreed. Cabrera — who didn't need to be in court but only represented by a lawyer — was arrested Feb. 16 in Ft. Pierce, Fla., and charged with DUI and resisting an officer.



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