Series: Game 1 of 1

Baltimore won 1-0

Game 1: Thursday, September 21

Tigers 3

(91-62, 46-32 away)

Orioles 4

(67-86, 39-39 home)

    4:05 PM ET, September 21, 2006

    Oriole Park at Camden Yards, Baltimore, Maryland 

    123456789 R H E
    DET 201000000 3 8 0
    BAL 00020002 - 4 9 0

    W: K. Benson (11-11)

    L: F. Rodney (7-4)

    S: C. Ray (33)

    Tigers fall to Orioles, maintain slim division lead

    BALTIMORE (AP) -- The Detroit Tigers probably wouldn't have minded traveling to Kansas City from Chicago by way of Baltimore -- if they got a win for their trouble.

    Rounding Third
    The Detroit Tigers and Minnesota Twins are battling for first place in the AL Central as the season heads for home. A look at the teams' remaining schedules:

    Games left
    3 at KC
    3 v. TOR
    3 v. KC
    3 at BAL
    4 v. KC
    3 v. CWS
    Record v. remaining opp.
    11-1 v. KC
    2-1 v. TOR
    4-2 v. BAL
    9-6 v. KC
    9-7 v. CWS

    The Tigers were on their way to doing just that, building a three-run lead in a makeup game against the Orioles. Then Baltimore rallied, further ruining what was supposed to be a day off for road-weary Detroit.

    Melvin Mora doubled in two runs in the eighth inning, capping a comeback that carried the Orioles to a 4-3 victory Thursday.

    Detroit retained its half-game lead in the the AL Central when the second-place Minnesota Twins lost 6-0 at Boston.

    "We let it slip away. We had the right people in there in the end," Detroit catcher Vance Wilson said. "We had a chance to win -- and didn't."

    Elias Says
    Detroit Tigers
    Detroit loaded the bases with nobody out in the top of the fifth inning but did not score, a pivotal failure in their one-run loss to the Orioles. It was the fourth time this season that the Tigers had the bases full with nobody out and did not score in that inning, tying Seattle and Toronto for the highest total in the major leagues.

    • For more Elias Says, click here

    Magglio Ordonez and Curtis Granderson homered for the Tigers, who were forced into a stopover in Baltimore to make up the May 11 rainout. Detroit played in Chicago on Wednesday night, then hurried to the East Coast before opening a three-game series against Kansas City on Friday.

    "No excuses here," Tigers manager Jim Leyland said.

    Kris Benson (11-11) allowed three runs and eight hits in eight innings for the Orioles. He walked off the mound with Baltimore trailing by a run, but ended up earning his first win since Aug. 18.

    Five days earlier, Benson went the distance in a 2-0 loss to Detroit.

    "He finally caught a break that he deserved and got himself another win," Orioles manager Sam Perlozzo said.

    Brian Roberts led off the eighth with a pinch-hit single off Fernando Rodney (7-4). David Newhan was hit by a pitch and replaced by Jeff Fiorentino. Chris Gomez fouled out after attempting to sacrifice, but the runners advanced on a double steal.

    "At that point, in that situation, I wanted to go for the win," Perlozzo said.

    Mora followed with a sharp grounder inside the third-base line, giving the Orioles their first lead of the game.

    Chris Ray pitched the ninth for his 33rd save.

    Nearly a thousand disgruntled Orioles fans walked out of the game in the fourth inning, culminating a demonstration aimed at team owner Peter Angelos, who has been in charge of the team during its club-record run of nine straight losing seasons.

    Miguel Tejada had three hits for the Orioles and Gomez had two, extending his hitting streak to a career-best tying 14 games. Tejada moved within two hits of matching his career high of 204, set in 2002 with Oakland during a season in which he was voted AL MVP.

    Detroit went up 2-0 in the first inning when Granderson led off with a double and Ordonez hit his 24th homer with two outs. That gave Ordonez 100 RBI, the first Tiger to reach that number since Bobby Higginson and Dean Palmer had 102 in 2000.

    Granderson made it 3-0 in the third with his 16th home run, but the lead didn't hold up.

    "You'd like to win your division, but making the playoffs is what the key is," Wilson said. "What we want to do is play good baseball this last week."

    Baltimore closed to 3-2 against Nate Robertson in the fourth. Tejada led off with his 200th hit, a single, and Ramon Hernandez walked before Kevin Millar hit an RBI double. After Robertson hit Corey Patterson with a pitch, Fernando Tatis delivered a sacrifice fly.

    Detroit loaded the bases with no outs in the fifth, but failed to score.

    "We had one big shot there and we didn't get anything out of it. That cost us," Leyland said. "That about sums it up."

    In the bottom half, the Orioles filled the bases with two outs before Patterson hit a routine fly to center. Baltimore again loaded the bases in the seventh before Jamie Walker struck out Patterson for the third out.

    Game notes

    Gomez has had seven multihit games during his 14-game run. The only other time he hit as many as 14 games in a row was in 1998. ... The season series ended 3-3.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press