Tigers 12, Twins 6

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DETROIT (AP)—Craig Monroe learned you can’t always judge the kind of game you’re going to have by batting practice.

He had a career-high five hits and tied his career best with six RBIs, leading the Detroit Tigers past the Minnesota Twins 12-6 on Friday night.

Detroit had a season-high 18 hits, including three doubles by Monroe, and combined to score nine runs in the fifth and sixth innings. Monroe had a three-run double in the fifth and doubled in two more runs in the sixth.

“I had the worst batting practice that I could ever think about,” Monroe said. “And I came in here (the clubhouse) pouting.”

He said he talked to hitting coach Kirk Gibson and looked at tapes of himself from 2003 and 2004.

Monroe, who leads the Tigers with 63 RBIs, also stopped worrying so much about his technique.

“I just focused on trying to see the ball,” he said. “I get caught up, sometimes, in my mechanics.”

Juan Castro homered and drove in a career-high four runs, and Jacque Jones homered for Minnesota.

Mike Maroth (8-10) got the win despite allowing six runs and eight hits in six innings. He walked two and struck out seven.

“It didn’t take much on my part, with all of the offense we had,” Maroth said.

Joe Mays (5-5) gave up a season-high eight runs—seven earned—and 10 hits in four-plus innings. He walked two and struck out two.

“I just didn’t do my job, that’s the bottom line,” Mays said.

He was chased in the fifth when the Tigers broke a 3-all tie with five runs.

Dmitri Young’s RBI single scored Chris Shelton to make it 4-3. After an error by second baseman Bret Boone allowed Ivan Rodriguez to reach base and load the bases, Monroe hit a double to center field to score all three runners.

Mays was then replaced by Terry Mulholland, who balked Monroe to third and allowed Omar Infante’s RBI single.

Minnesota got within 8-6 on a three-run double by Castro, but Detroit added four more in the sixth on Rodriguez’s sacrifice fly, Monroe’s two-run double and Curtis Granderson’s RBI triple.

“At 8-6, we’ve got ourselves a ballgame,” Detroit manager Alan Trammell said. “But we added four more and that took the wind out of their sails.”

The Tigers tied a season high with six hits in the inning.

“It was a tough game,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. “We didn’t pitch well, we made one big error and they made some big hits.”

Minnesota took a 1-0 lead in the first on Torii Hunter’s run-scoring double. Detroit tied it in its half on Magglio Ordonez’s sacrifice fly.

Castro’s two-out homer in the second put the Twins back up by one, before Brandon Inge’s sacrifice fly tied it again. Detroit went ahead 3-2 on Monroe’s two-out RBI single in the third.

Jones tied it at 3 with a home run leading off the third.

Notes

The Tigers acquired INF John McDonald from the Toronto Blue Jays for a player to be named. … Detroit placed 2B Placido Polanco on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to July 12, with a strained left hamstring tendon. … Detroit recalled OF Granderson from Triple-A Toledo and designated LHP Doug Creek for assignment. … Detroit transferred RHP Troy Percival from the 15-day to the 60-day disabled list. … Minnesota 1B Justin Morneau is 1-for-26. … Shelton was 2-for-4 to extend his hitting streak to 14 games (25-for-61, .409). … Ordonez went 2-for-4 to extend his hitting streak to 14 games (24-for-57, .421).

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