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'04 Tigers have won 43 games already

DETROIT (AP) -- Despite a steady downpour, the 40,918 Tigers fans
stood and cheered as Mike Maroth finished off his one-hitter.

It's been quite a turnaround for Maroth and Detroit, which
matched its win total from last season with an 8-0 victory over the
New York Yankees on Friday night.

It was fitting Maroth (6-7) picked up the win -- with his first
major league shutout -- after becoming the face of Detroit's
miserable season with 21 losses last year, baseball's first 20-game
loser since 1980.

"It was unbelievable having a sold-out crowd, standing on their
feet for the ninth inning, getting louder and louder," said
Maroth, who tied a career high with seven strikeouts and walked
two. "I usually smile, but I'm going to be smiling for a while."

The Tigers (43-46) already have as many wins as they did last
season when they lost an AL-record 119 games, one short of the
post-1900 futility mark.

"I couldn't ask for anything more," Maroth said.

Ivan Rodriguez -- criticized for signing with the lowly Tigers
after helping Florida win the World Series -- hit a two-run double
in a five-run fifth.

Gary Sheffield's double in the fourth was the lone hit against
Maroth, and Sheffield was the only Yankees baserunner to reach
second.

The Yankees -- one-hit for the first time in just over a year --
said Maroth deserved to enjoy the moment.

"You knew things would get better for him because of the way he
went out there last year," Alex Rodriguez said. "He showed a lot
of character."

New York manager Joe Torre said the 26-year-old probably learned
a lot from his struggles.

"Players that have to fight through things like that become
better," Torre said. "He's not alone. Steve Carlton lost 19 one
year, then won a string of Cy Youngs."

The Tigers have won six of eight, and the Yankees lost for the
first time in six games.

All-Star Javier Vazquez (10-6) gave up eight runs -- seven earned
-- on eight hits over 4 1-3 innings, in his worst outing since
giving up seven runs on May 6 at Oakland. It was just his second
loss since May 12, a span of 12 starts.

"Javy wasn't very good," Torre said.

Unlike last season, Maroth got plenty of run support.

Carlos Guillen's RBI triple -- his eighth -- and Eric Munson's
two-run homer put Detroit ahead 3-0 in the second.

Rodriguez's two-run double in the fifth followed Bobby
Higginson's RBI single. Dmitri Young brought home another run with
a triple -- his second in two games -- and Guillen ended the big
inning with a single.

"Mike pitched like that all the time last year, we just had no
run support for him," Young said.

Game notes
In the only other complete game of his three-season career,
Maroth gave up four hits in a 4-3 loss at Kansas City on April 20,
2003. ... Maroth threw the first complete game one-hitter for the
Tigers since Jeff Weaver two years ago. ... New York RHP Mike
Mussina went on the DL with a sore right elbow Friday, two days
before he was scheduled to return to the rotation. Mussina will be
eligible to come off the DL on July 22. ... Detroit RHP Nate
Cornejo, out since May 3 with shoulder inflammation, expects to
have season-ending surgery soon. ... Juan Padilla made his major
league debut. The 25-year-old right-hander was recalled from Triple
A-Columbus on Thursday to take Sam Marsonek's roster spot.<