Beltran's four RBI provide offense for Suppan


KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Jeff Suppan hasn't had a lot to
celebrate this year.

''It was nice to go out there and pitch well and get a win,'' he
said Thursday night after his five-hitter lifted the Kansas City Royals
over the Detroit Tigers 7-2.

Suppan (9-16), backed by Carlos Beltran's four RBI, won for the
first time in 12 starts since July 17 against the Chicago White

''I just went out there to control the things I could control,''
Suppan said. ''I think I got into a rut, trying to do too much. The
last four games, I went out and tried to hit spots and change
speeds. That seemed to work. My last couple of starts, I was trying
to do things right, regardless of outcome.''

Suppan had been 0-1 with a 3.54 ERA in his previous three

''In his last five outings, he has been the pitcher people were
telling me he was,'' Kansas City manager Tony Pena said.

Suppan, who struck out five and walked two, pitched his 11th
complete game, his first since a career-best two-hitter at Detroit
on April 29.

Nate Cornejo (1-5) gave up four runs -- one earned -- and four
hits in six innings, walked four and struck out none.

Detroit (55-103), which made two errors in the game and eight in
the three-game series, is finishing its worst season since going
53-109 in 1996.

''I've got to say it, we've been bad on defense,'' Detroit
manager Luis Pujols said. ''We're last in the league. We've been
paying for it all year. You can't hide it. We have to make the
plays. You know errors are going to happen, but once in a while you
expect to make the plays.''

Eric Munson's run-scoring single put the Tigers ahead in the fourth, but
Randall Simon was thrown out at third base on the play by right
fielder Aaron Guiel, ending the inning.

Kansas City (62-97), which already has tied its franchise record
for defeats, needs just one victory at Cleveland this weekend to avoid
losing 100 games.

The Royals took a 3-1 lead in the fifth, loading the bases when
Dee Brown walked, Damion Easley misplayed Angel Berroa's grounder
for an error, Cornejo threw a wild pitch and Guiel walked.

A.J. Hinch followed with a grounder that rolled between Shane
Halter's legs at third for a two-run error. Michael Tucker walked
to load the bases again, and Beltran hit a sacrifice fly. The
inning ended when Mike Sweeney grounded into a double play.

''It was nice to see that,'' Pena said. ''We've had nothing go
our way. Nobody wants to lose 100 games in a season. You could see
the way they took the field tonight.''

Sweeney got the Royals' first hit off Cornejo when he blooped a
single into short right in the fourth, and Brown made it 4-1 in the
fifth with his first career triple.

Beltran hit his 28th homer in the seventh, connecting off Eric
Eckenstahler. Halter hit a sacrifice fly in the ninth after Suppan
gave up a pair of singles.

Game notes
Raul Ibanez had three hits. ... Tigers outfielder Robert Fick was
not in the starting lineup. He left the game Wednesday in the second
inning with tightness in his right hamstring. ... Sweeney has hit
safely in 18 of his last 20 games. He went 1-for-4, dropping his
average to .343, four points behind Boston's Manny Ramirez, the American League leader. ... Attendance was 11,092, giving the Royals a season total
of 1,323,036 in 77 dates, a 17,182 average.