Final

Series: Game 3 of 3

Detroit won 3-0

Game 1: Friday, July 6
Boston2Final
Detroit9
Game 2: Saturday, July 7
Boston2Final
in 13
Detroit3
Game 3: Sunday, July 8
Boston5Final
Detroit6

Red Sox 5

(53-34, 25-20 away)

Tigers 6

(52-34, 25-19 home)

    1:05 PM ET, July 8, 2007

    Comerica Park, Detroit, Michigan 

    123456789 R H E
    BOS 002000210 5 7 0
    DET 10410000 - 6 10 5

    W: N. Robertson (5-6)

    L: D. Matsuzaka (10-6)

    S: T. Jones (22)

    Sheffield, Tigers take Central lead into break

    A CLOSER LOOK
    • Summary: The Tigers made a statement to the Red Sox and the rest of the American League on Sunday, completing a sweep of Boston for their fifth straight win.

    Gary Sheffield
    Sheffield

    • Sheff's special: Gary Sheffield homered and had two doubles off Daisuke Matsuzaka to power the Tigers' attack.

    • Welcome to the bigs: Dice-K allowed three home runs in a game for the first time in his major league career.

    • Star treatment: The Red Sox have a baseball-high six All-Stars and Detroit has five, plus its manager, but just three of the 11 were in the lineup.

    • Quotable: "If that's not a web gem, I've never seen one. Nobody makes a better play than that." -- Jim Leyland on Curtis Granderson's fantastic catch in the fourth inning, where he robbed Wily Mo Pena of a homer.

    -- ESPN.com news services

    Tigers 6, Red Sox 5

    DETROIT (AP) -- Gary Sheffield and the Detroit Tigers made Daisuke Matsuzaka pay for his lackluster location.

    Sheffield hit one of Detroit's three homers off the Japanese star, Curtis Granderson took a home run away from Boston and the Tigers beat the Red Sox 6-5 Sunday to complete a three-game sweep.

    Carlos Guillen and Marcus Thames also homered against Matsuzaka, who gave up three homers for the first time in the major leagues. Sheffield added two doubles off the right-hander.

    "We're pretty good at hitting mistakes," Detroit manager Jim Leyland said. "It doesn't matter who is pitching."

    After trailing 6-2, Boston scored twice in the seventh and once in the eighth to pull within a run. With runners on first and third in the ninth against Todd Jones, J.D. Drew fouled out to end the game.

    As it turned out, Granderson's catch proved to be as important as it was impressive.

    The center fielder sprinted to his right, jumped in stride and snagged a ball -- with his left armpit over the wall -- to rob Wily Mo Pena of a homer in the fourth.

    "If that's not a web gem, I've never seen one," Leyland said. "Nobody makes a better play than that."

    Detroit heads into the All-Star break after winning five straight and 14 of 19, moving a game ahead of Cleveland in the AL Central. The Tigers beat Boston 9-2 in the series opener and 3-2 in 13 innings Saturday night after winning the last two games of a three-game series against the Indians.

    "They seem to be hitting their stride," Matsuzaka said through an interpreter.

    The Red Sox were a season-high 22 games over .500 on June 24, but have since lost eight of 13 overall and six in a row on the road.

    "I'm not thrilled," manager Terry Francona said.

    Boston still, however, has a double-digit lead in the AL East.

    Matsuzaka (10-6) allowed six runs and 10 hits in five innings, which equaled his shortest start in his first major league season. He had given up just two runs in his previous four starts and hadn't lost since June 10.

    Tigers take down Red Sox
    Detroit Tigers
    The three-game series between the Tigers and Red Sox was supposed to be a matchup of two of the AL's best teams. Following Detroit's 6-5 win Sunday to complete the sweep of Boston, the series wasn't much of a contest statistically speaking.
    TigersRed Sox
    Runs189
    Batting average.288.207
    Team ERA2.325.65
    Starters' ERA2.959.00

    "The problem was with my control," Matsuzaka said. "I felt I left a lot of my pitches in soft locations.

    "I wasn't able to throw the fastball for strikes."

    Sheffield hit his 21st homer in the first inning and Guillen's 14th followed Thames' drive over the center-field wall in the third.

    Thames, who hit a grand slam in the series opener, turned one of Matsuzaka's mistakes into a 440-foot shot.

    "I haven't seen any go out there like that," Leyland said. "When he hits them up like that, it reminds me of Mark McGwire to be honest."

    In just 131 at-bats, Thames has 10 homers and might challenge Craig Monroe for the starting job in left field after the break.

    Nate Robertson (5-6) allowed four runs and four hits in 6 1/3 innings. Boston scored two runs in the third inning off him on three walks, a hit batter and a sacrifice fly.

    Jose Capellan pitched 1 1/3 innings, Zach Miner got the final out of the eighth and Jones earned his 22nd save in 26 chances.

    Curtis Granderson
    Tigers center fielder Curtis Granderson went over the fence to rob Wily Mo Pena of a home run in the fourth inning.(Tom DiPace for ESPN The Magazine)

    Robertson gave up just two hits through the first six innings, then Jeff Bailey and Julio Lugo hit consecutive homers in the seventh to make it 6-4. The Red Sox had two on and one out in the inning, but Capellan got out of the inning with two flyouts.

    Boston pulled within a run in the eighth after Drew walked, advanced two bases on a throwing error and scored on Lugo's double.

    The Red Sox have a baseball-high six All-Stars and Detroit has five, plus Leyland, but just three of the 11 were in the lineup.

    Boston's David Ortiz and Mike Lowell along with Guillen of the Tigers started the game while some of the other All-Stars were used as pinch-hitters.

    Detroit second baseman Placido Polanco is day to day with a back injury, and outfielder Magglio Ordonez was held out to rest a sore heel.

    Red Sox left fielder Manny Ramirez was out of the lineup with what Francona called "intestinal turmoil," but was used as a pinch hitter in the eighth inning after the Tigers gave him antibiotics.

    Detroit catcher Ivan Rodriguez, who had the game-winning hit Saturday night, didn't play until pinch-hitting in the eighth.

    Game notes


    Leyland, who will manage in the All-Star game, said he knows who the AL's starting pitcher will be, but wouldn't reveal the decision. ... Matsuzaka gave up more than one home run only once before, on May 25 when Texas hit two home runs off him. ... Detroit committed a season-high five errors. ... Matsuzaka lasted five innings twice previously. ... Virgil Trucks, 90, and 80-year-old Joe Ginsberg were on the field before the game to honor Justin Verlander and Rodriguez. Verlander's no-hitter last month was the first by a Tiger at home since Trucks did it in 1952. Ginsberg and Rodriguez were the catchers in the two games. ... The Tigers drew their ninth straight sellout, extending a record in 6 1/2 seasons at Comerica Park. ... Lugo was 3-for-3 with a double and home run.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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