Tigers Save Season with Win over Rangers

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A pair of home runs has driven the Detroit Tigers to a 7-5 victory over the Texas Rangers on Thursday, saving the team from elimination.

With the win, the American League Championship Series is heading back to Texas.

In their return to Arlington, the Rangers are clinging to a lead of 3-2 in the best-of-seven series. If they win on Saturday’s Game Six, they will enjoy a return trip to the World Series.

Jim Leyland, manager of the Tigers, admitted to reporters that he would rather be up 3-2, but he had no problem however things turned out.

“We are going to keep playing,” he said, despite not knowing how the score would turn out.

Ace Justin Verlander had the fate of the Tigers in his hand, and thankfully, he exceeded expectations with a barrage of home runs.

Verlander held a record of 7 1/3 innings, throwing 133 pitches as a career high, and giving up, out of eight hits, four runs.

Verlander said he worked hard in the off-season so that he could “feel good now.”

He said he knew how big the situation was, but he refused to let himself worry about going home if they lost. Instead, he made up his mind to pitch the way he was meant to do.

Interestingly, Verlander’s last pitch was a two-run homer by Nelson Cruz, who was the first to hit five home runs in a single League Championship Series, which cut the lead to 7-4.

Meanwhile, Delmon Young, who had suffered from a strained muscle in his stomach and consequently missed the second game, had his first two hits as a lone homer in the fourth inning and a two-run success during the sixth.

Young said he had been able to get his timing back during the last few games, now holding five homers, adding how they now needed to play like they did in Comerica, in Texas.

Solo shots were also contributed by Alex Avila and Ryan Raburn, with the ending total of four homers giving the Tigers the record for the most homers in a single post-season game.

Avila’s homer tied the game at 1-1 in the third inning, one inning before the Tigers got the lead presented by Young.

At 2-2, the teams were in deadlock, with the bases loaded in the sixth inning, but the Rangers failed to give the final blow. A double play by Detroit resulted in a four-run explosion and ended the threat.

Game 6 for the Tigers will start with Max Scherzer versus Derek Holland. They had been the Game 2 starters, won by the Rangers. Detroit’s Doug Fisher will likely try to replicate his Game 3 win over Colby Lewis in Game 7.

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