DETROIT (AP) -- Detroit Tigers manager Alan Trammell felt as
though he was sitting through a repeat of the previous night's
Jhonny Peralta's two-run double keyed Cleveland's five-run
seventh inning, and the Indians rallied to defeat the Detroit
Tigers 7-6 on Wednesday night -- just 24 hours after the Tigers blew
a five-run lead and lost.
"We're just having trouble holding teams down right now,
especially out of the pen," Trammell said. "I don't like to see
Jake Westbrook (13-9) won for the first time in four September
starts, allowing three runs and seven hits in seven innings.
"I felt pretty good out there, but I wasn't locked in like I
have been," Westbrook said. "I was elevating some fastballs
early, but I settled down and got into a good rhythm."
Indians manager Eric Wedge thought Westbrook gave his team a
chance to come back.
"Jake was real good," Wedge said. "Even when he did get
behind, he was able to get out of it. He's been our most consistent
starter, and he's still going strong."
The Tigers trailed by as many as four runs, but made it close in
the ninth, scoring three times against Bob Wickman. Bobby Higginson
hit a solo homer with one out, and Carlos Pena had a two-run shot
with two outs. Wickman, who had only allowed two homers all season,
finally got Eric Munson to ground out to end the game.
"We've got a lot of confidence in Wicky," Wedge said. "He's
always able to get the ball on the ground when he needs it, and
that's what he did to get the last out."
Wil Ledezma (4-3) replaced Tigers starter Nate Robertson to
start the seventh, but allowed five runs while only getting two
"That was big," Wedge said. "It was a good inning, and Jhonny
got the big hit we needed to put us on top."
After stranding runners on the corners in the second, the Tigers
took their three-run lead in the third.
Cleveland had only one hit in the first four innings, but
Robertson hit Ben Broussard with a pitch in the fifth and Phelps
hit his 15th homer into the right-field bullpen.
"I was able to drive a ball and get us back into the game,"
Robertson was hit on the pitching hand by Lawton's bouncer in
the sixth. He retired the next batter, but left after the inning.
X-rays were negative.
"You react and try to grab the ball," he said. "It only hit
my ring finger, and it went numb, so I couldn't throw my changeup.
I can't imagine I'll miss a start, but that could have been a
brutal way to end the season."
Indians 2B Ronnie Belliard, whose hitless streak extended
to 19 at-bats, left in the seventh with dizziness. ... Robertson
had been trying to become the first Tigers lefty to win 13 in a
season since Justin Thompson in 1997. ... Cleveland DH Travis
Hafner got the day off with a sore elbow, while Tigers C Ivan
Rodriguez took a scheduled rest. ... Higginson's ninth-inning homer
was the 186th of his career, moving him past Trammell for 12th
place in team history.