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Royals roll over Detroit

9/16/2003

DETROIT (AP) -- Trying to avoid setting the post-1900 record for
losses, the Detroit Tigers keep coming up against teams fighting
for playoff spots.

Detroit became the first AL team to lose 111 games since the
1939 St. Louis Browns, falling to Kansas City 10-4 Monday night as
former Tiger Joe Randa drove in five runs.

The Tigers lost their third in a row after winning the series
opener.

"A win is a win, even against them," Kansas City manager Tony
Pena said. "They beat us in the first game, but now we've started
to get some momentum. We need to keep that and take it into the
next series."

Kansas City remained three games behind Minnesota, which took
over sole possession of the AL Central lead by winning at
Cleveland, and closed within 2½ games of idle Chicago.

"That's a good team, and they are still competing for a playoff
spot," Tigers manager Alan Trammell said. "They looked flat when
we beat them on Friday, and I thought maybe they were done, but
they've come back and played three very good games. Now we are the
ones looking flat again."

At 38-111, the Tigers have the most defeats in the majors since
the 1965 New York Mets lost 112 times and need five wins in their
final 13 games to avoid matching the modern-day record of 120
losses, set by the 1962 Mets.

"We made a gallant effort again tonight, and it got away from
us in the end," Trammell said. "That's just how things have been
this year."

Randa tied his career high for RBI. He hit a three-run homer in
the ninth, and Aaron Guiel homered later in the inning.

Raul Ibanez had three hits and scored three times, and Brent Mayne homered for the Royals.

"If we take care of business, we are going to be there at the
end of the season," Ibanez said. "We've got to play Chicago tough
and be ready if Minnesota falters."

Brian Anderson (12-11) improved to 3-0 against the Tigers this
year, with the first two wins coming for Cleveland.

Anderson allowed four runs and 10 hits in 7 1/3 innings. Curtis Leskanic and Mike MacDougal finished.

Gary Knotts (3-7) allowed four runs, four hits and two walks in
2 2/3 innings. In his last two starts, Knotts has given up 14 runs
in six innings.

"I really don't have any answers right now," he said. "Not
for today and not for this season. I'm going to have a lot to think
about in the offseason."

Detroit had a chance to take a 1-0 lead in the first but, with
cleanup hitter Dmitri Young at the plate, Alex Sanchez easily was
thrown out at the plate by Anderson while trying for a rare delayed
steal of home. Trammell said that Sanchez attempted the play on his
own.

"I think that, in a situation like that, with their best RBI
guy at the plate, trying to steal home might be a little too
tricky," Anderson said. "But if you want to give me an out, I'll
take it."

After Knotts held the Royals hitless in the first two innings,
they hit for the cycle in the span of five batters while scoring
four runs in the third.

With one out, Mayne hit a 405-foot homer over the right-center
field scoreboard. After Angel Berroa walked, Carlos Beltran tripled
off the scoreboard to make it 2-0.

Mike Sweeney's single increased the lead to 3-0, and Ibanez
doubled to put runners on second and third. Randa's groundout gave
Kansas City its fourth run of the inning.

Trammell thought Mayne's homer rattled Knotts.

"Gary has to do a better job of getting past that homer," he
said. "A solo homer is no big deal -- that's going to happen to
everyone in this game. But it looked like it affected him for the
rest of the inning, and suddenly he goes from having great stuff in
the first two innings to being out of the game in the third."

Detroit closed to 4-2 in the bottom of the third on a sacrifice
fly by Shane Halter and a RBI single by Bobby Higginson.

Kansas City made it 5-2 in the fifth on Guiel's RBI single, but
Detroit got two runs in its half when Sanchez grounded into a
run-scoring double play and Halter followed with his 11th homer.

Randa's double increased the margin back to two runs in the
seventh.

Game notes
Detroit Shock All-Star Swin Cash threw out the first pitch.
The Shock and Los Angeles Sparks play in the deciding game of the
WNBA finals Tuesday at the Palace of Auburn Hills. ... The game was
a makeup of an April 8 rainout, and it drew just 9,342 fans. ...
Halter's homer broke an 0-for-13 slump. ... Randa played for the
Tigers in 1998. ... Rondell White was hit by a pitch in the third
inning, increasing Kansas City's franchise-record total to 70 for
the season. The previous mark was 64 in 1999.