Tigers 6, Rangers 4
DETROIT (AP)—The Texas Rangers were upset with themselves for the way their winning streak ended.
The Rangers had won nine straight games, matching the second-longest streak in team history. They were trying to equal the longest streak in the majors this season, the New York Yankees’ 10-game run from last month.
“It’s a tough one to take home with you,” David Dellucci said. “But we just have to try and start another streak.”
Texas had a three-run lead that starter Ryan Drese (4-5) quickly lost in the seventh.
The Tigers’ rally started with Rondell White’s leadoff single. It continued with Ivan Rodriguez’s single that went off Drese’s glove, Craig Monroe’s RBI double and Chris Shelton’s RBI groundout. Tony Giarratano, making his major league debut, hit an RBI single and Nook Logan bunted directly at Drese, who made a wild throw and was charged with an error.
Inge then followed with a single to right off Doug Brocail past a drawn-in infield.
“It seems like one little thing can cause a snowball effect,” said Kevin Mench, whose two-run homer gave Texas a 3-0 lead in the fourth. “They took advantage of it.”
Detroit has won four of five, with its previous victory also coming in a comeback against AL East-leading Baltimore. The Rangers fell into a first-place tie with the Los Angeles Angels in the AL West.
“When you play against good teams like that and you come from behind to win, and we’ve done it twice now recently, it’s good,” said Detroit’s Ivan Rodriguez, who singled and scored in the seventh, one day after breaking his right hand. “It’s nice for the fans to see that.”
Despite a game-time temperature of 73 degrees, the game drew just 15,428 fans.
Detroit trailed 4-1 before its rally.
“It didn’t look good for a while, did it?” Tigers manager Alan Trammell said. “That’s a hot team, as we all know, so I’m happy.”
Jeremy Bonderman (6-3) gave up four runs and 10 hits while striking out six and walking none in 7 1-3 innings.
“We felt the bullpen would be a strength and it has been,” Trammell said.
Shelton was brought up from Triple-A Toledo on Tuesday and Giarratano, who was at Double-A Erie, found out he would play for the Tigers the next day.
“They’re the new guys, but I don’t care who it is as long as somebody gets it done,” Trammell said.
Giarratano said he had less than an hour to gather his belongings before flying to Detroit, arriving about two hours before the game.
“It hasn’t sunk in yet, but I’m sure it will fast,” he said.
Drese allowed six runs—five earned—and 10 hits over 6 1-3 innings. He struck out two and did not give up a walk. Texas starters earned each of the victories during the nine-game streak.
“It was frustrating,” Drese said. “I thought it was the best I pitched all year.”
After three scoreless innings, Texas scored three runs on Mench’s two-run homer and Hank Blalock’s RBI double, scoring Michael Young from first on a hit-and-run play. When Mench hit his home run—his seventh in 14 games— Bonderman cursed at himself so loudly he could be heard in at least parts of the ballpark.
“He’s hard on himself, which happens with the good ones,” Trammell said.
Bonderman is 4-1 with a 3.23 ERA over his last seven starts.
“All the credit goes to our offense,” he said.
Dmitri Young hit a homer, estimated at 447 feet, to right-center in the fourth.
Richard Hidalgo’s 11th home run—his sixth in nine games—in the fifth inning put Texas ahead 4-1.
With a single in the fourth, White extended his hitting streak to 17 games, matching the best streak of his career.
The Rangers won a franchise-record 14 in a row from May 12-27 in 1991. … White also had a 17-game hitting streak in 2001 while playing for the Chicago Cubs. … Detroit OF Magglio Ordonez hit off a tee and played catch Wednesday, taking another small step toward playing after having hernia surgery in April. … Detroit SS Carlos Guillen, resting his right knee, might play as soon as Friday. … Texas OF Gary Matthews Jr., on the 15-day DL with a sprained left hamstring, was held out of an extended spring training game on Wednesday. He is expected to go to Triple-A Oklahoma City, but he might not play Saturday, as scheduled. … Michael Young extended his hitting streak to 11 games.