ARLINGTON, Texas -- Detroit manager Jim Leyland leaned over the railing, pointing his finger down the tunnel and shouting at the umpires while they left the field.
Leyland was already furious before the Tigers blew a two-run lead in the ninth against Texas to lose their sixth straight game. And he let it out after Marlon Byrd, whose two-run triple had tied the game, trotted home with the winning run in the Rangers' 5-4 victory Tuesday night."It wasn't a leadoff walk. Michael Young was struck out," Leyland said. "That's no excuse for us not winning the ball game, but Michael Young was struck out. Clearly. Clearly."Young recovered from an 0-2 count to draw a leadoff walk in the ninth off Fernando Rodney (0-6) and Josh Hamilton singled before Byrd tripled into the right-field corner. The Tigers then intentionally walked consecutive batters to load the bases for Chris Davis, and the rookie singled over the head of drawn-in left fielder Matt Joyce.Another frustrating night in what has been a disappointing season for the Tigers, who are on their second six-game losing streak in six weeks. They are one loss shy of matching their only seven-game slide, which came the first week of the season to set an ominous tone."I'm upset we lost the ball game. I don't put the blame anywhere," Leyland said. "But when you earn something, you should get it. That's the only point I'm making. He was struck out. The rest of it, we didn't earn. But Michael Young shouldn't have been on. He was walking away to the dugout."Just like the previous night, Young and Byrd keyed a late rally against the Tigers. Young had a go-ahead RBI single and Byrd another two-run triple in a four-run eighth Monday night that pushed Texas to an 11-8 victory.Young (right hand) and Byrd (left knee) both had MRIs earlier Tuesday to check on their lingering aches -- Young only has inflammation and Byrd a bone bruise. Then they helped lead another comeback, only the third victory in 73 games for Texas when trailing after eight innings."It's been bad in here. There have been a lot of MRIs lately," Young said. "Guys are battling, doing everything we can to finish strong and set the tone for next year. At this point, finishing over .500 would be a nice step."The Rangers (75-77) have to win seven of their last 10 games to accomplish that.Detroit went ahead with three runs in the seventh off Kevin Millwood, after the Texas starter had retired 16 consecutive batters. The Tigers still led 4-2 going to the ninth when Rodney came on for his sixth blown save in 17 chances.Jamey Wright (7-6) worked the ninth, getting a double-play grounder after allowing a single.The Tigers hadn't had a base runner since the first against Millwood until Magglio Ordonez had a leadoff single in the seventh. Ordonez was erased on a fielder's choice grounder hit by Miguel Cabrera before Joyce walked.Gary Sheffield, who has 497 career homers, flied out deep to center before Brandon Inge singled up the middle. Center fielder Byrd's throw home hit Cabrera, who slid in with the tying run. Joyce raced home when the ball bounced away from the plate and Inge moved up to second. Dusty Ryan followed with another run-scoring hit to center."Up to the seventh inning, I threw the ball well. My curveball was good and for the most part I located my fastball where I wanted," Millwood said. "I wasn't tired at all, just some balls over the middle. ... I kept it in the park, just gave up too many hits."Zach Miner, who moved from the bullpen to the rotation two months ago, limited Texas to five singles over 7 1/3 innings. The right-hander retired the last 11 batters he faced.
It was the Rangers' eighth walk-off victory this season. The last was Aug. 4, when Byrd hit a game-inning grand slam against the New York Yankees. ... Rangers DH Milton Bradley (sore left wrist, strained back) didn't start for the eighth time in 10 games. Manager Ron Washington said Bradley got a cortisone shot in his wrist and could return Wednesday. ... Texas RHP Brandon McCarthy, who left in the first Monday with a strained flexor tendon on his pitching hand, also had an MRI on Tuesday. The team said he won't pitch again this season. .. Leyland expects SS Edgar Renteria (bruised chest) to be back in the lineup Friday at Cleveland. ... Detroit has drawn at least one walk in 61 consecutive games, the longest streak since 62 in a row in 1996. ... Nelson Cruz has 14 RBIs his last 10 games.