Wins have been few and far between for the Detroit Tigers.
Baseball’s worst team will try to build off a rare victory and take its first series of the season in the finale of a weekend set with the Seattle Mariners at Safeco Field.
Shane Halter homered and scored three times as the punchless Tigers won for only the third time in 22 games this season, beating Seattle 6-4 Saturday to end the Mariners’ five-game winning streak.
The Tigers tied season highs with six runs and 11 hits. Detroit has scored only 49 runs this year (2.2 per game), by far the fewest in the majors.
Shut out in its previous two games, including a 6-0 setback in Friday’s series opener, the Tigers finally broke through for their first run in 22 innings when Halter led off the fourth with a homer—Detroit’s eighth of the season.
Seattle stranded 12 runners, including two in the ninth as Matt Anderson got his third save of the season.
The Tigers, who have split their last four games, have not won a series since taking two of three at Baltimore last August.
Early leaders in the ultra-competitive AL West, the Mariners won 11 of 13 prior to Saturday’s loss. Seattle has not lost a series since dropping two of three to Anaheim from April 8-10.
STANDINGS: Tigers - 5th place, 14 1/2 GB, AL Central. Mariners - 1st place, AL West.
TIGERS PROBABLE STARTER: Adam Bernero (0-3, 4.56 ERA). Still looking for his first win of the year, Bernero gave up four earned runs and 10 hits over six innings in Tuesday’s 6-5 loss to Oakland. The right-hander, who will be making his first career start against Seattle, has tossed four innings of scoreless relief in two previous appearances against the Mariners.
MARINERS PROBABLE STARTER: Freddy Garcia (1-3, 4.30 ERA). On Tuesday, Garcia turned in his best outing of the season, but did not receive a decision. He gave up one earned run and seven hits over 6 1-3 innings in Seattle’s 8-5 win over Cleveland. In eight career starts against the Tigers, Garcia is 3-3 with a 4.09 ERA.
OFFENSIVE LEADERS: Tigers - Gene Kingsale, .241 avg; Halter and Eric Munson, 2 HRs and 8 RBIs; Bobby Higginson, 7 runs; five tied with 1 SB. Mariners - Edgar Martinez, .361 avg; Bret Boone, 5 HRs; John Olerud, 17 RBIs; Randy Winn, 18 runs; Ichiro Suzuki, 4 SBs.
SEASON SERIES: Tied, 1-1.
STREAKS AND NOTES: Tigers - OF Higginson had an RBI single Saturday, ending an 0-for-18 slump. … RHP Bernero is the Tigers’ oldest starter at 26 years, five months. … Detroit hasn’t won consecutive games since winning three in a row from Aug. 18-20. The last two of those wins were against Seattle. Mariners - The Mariners have been outhomered 28-17 this season. … CF Mike Cameron missed his third straight game Saturday with a strained groin and manager Bob Melvin said he probably will hold him out of Sunday’s game. … Seattle has scored at least four runs in nine straight games.
ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Tigers - 2-12 on the road; Mariners - 10-5 at home.