SAN DIEGO (AP) -- The road has not been kind to Justin Verlander this season, even if he was completely oblivious to the fact.
"I hadn't had one?" Verlander said of his six-game road winless streak. "I didn't know."The right-hander hadn't won on the road since last September at Oakland, but he struck out a season-high 10 at Petco Park, working around five walks and five hits, in the Detroit Tigers' 5-3 victory over the San Diego Padres on Sunday."It's not a big deal," Verlander said. "It's big to get a win."Magglio Ordonez added a two-run homer for the Tigers, who won for the 10th time in 12 games in taking the rubber-game of the series. Todd Jones, the fourth Detroit reliever, came on in the ninth to pick up his 14th save in 14 opportunities.Jones was hit in his right knee by a ball hit by Jody Gerut leading off the ninth. After a few warmup pitches, Jones remained in the game and got Adrian Gonzalez for the first time in five plate appearances on a fly to center for the final out.Verlander threw 115 pitches, but those included two intentional walks to Gonzalez with a runner on second and one out each time."I don't like to get my pitch count up there like that," Verlander said. "I was trying to keep it down. I was really trying to steer away from strikeouts."Gonzalez finished 2-for-3 with a pair of walks for San Diego, and hit his 21st homer of the season off Verlander in the first inning.Carlos Guillen tied it up with an RBI single in the third before Ordonez connected off Randy Wolf (5-6) in the fifth for his 12th homer, giving the Tigers a 3-1 lead."I left a curve ball up over the plate," Wolf said. "Obviously it wasn't where I wanted it to be. I think that was kind of the difference in the game. Those are ones that make it tough to sleep at night."Ordonez added an RBI double in the seventh off reliever Cla Meredith that made it 4-2.In the seventh, Gonzalez was thrown out at home trying to score behind his brother Edgar Gonzalez on Khalil Greene's double off reliever Joel Zumaya. Left-fielder Marcus Thames grabbed the ball on a bounce off the wall, threw to shortstop Edgar Renteria, who fired a one-hopper to Ivan Rodriguez to keep the Tigers in front.Rodriguez hit his second home run of the season in the eighth off San Diego's Heath Bell.Wolf struck out a season-high 10 for the Padres, but gave up six hits and three runs -- only one of which was earned.San Diego manager Bud Black was ejected for the second time this year after arguing a call on a ball hit by Michael Barrett in the eighth inning.With a man on first and nobody out, Barrett hit a ball to the left of the plate that headed toward third base. Barrett stopped and pointed to his left foot as if he was hit, but plate umpire Jim Joyce didn't react. The play continued with the Tigers turning a 5-4-3 double play."From [Joyce's] vantage point he thought it didn't hit him," Black said. "I thought otherwise."
Padres closer Trevor Hoffman threw a perfect ninth inning appearing against the Tigers for the first time in his career. The only team Hoffman hasn't faced is Minnesota, who come into San Diego Tuesday through Thursday. ... Gonzalez was on base four straight times with his home run, single and two walks before flying out to center to end the game. ... Thames went 2-for-4 and has now hit safely in nine of his last 11 games, during which he's batting .314 with eight home runs and 13 RBIs.