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Trailing by six runs in ninth, Tigers score six, win in 12

Sep 21, 2013, 11:30 PM EDT

Andy Dirks AP

Trailing 6-0 in the bottom of the ninth, the Tigers rallied for six runs against the White Sox bullpen to send the game into extra innings. They pushed across a bases-loaded run for the walk-off win in the 12th inning, reducing their magic number over the Indians in the AL Central to two.

Tigers starter Rick Porcello was solid through six innings, matching White Sox starter Chris Sale with zero after zero. In the top of the seventh, however, the White Sox pushed across two runs on a Jeff Keppinger double and a Gordon Beckham single. The Sox continued to tack on runs. Paul Konerko put his team up 3-0 in the eighth with an RBI single. In the ninth, Bryan Anderson hit a two-run double to center, and Marcus Semien followed up with an RBI ground-rule double to bring the score to 6-0.

White Sox reliever Nate Jones, who relieved Sale in the bottom of the eighth, took the hill in the bottom of the ninth looking for a quick exit against the division rival Tigers, but the Tiger offense had other ideas. Torii Hunter led off with a triple and promptly scored on Miguel Cabrera‘s RBI single to center. Prince Fielder singled to put runners on first and second and no outs for Victor Martinez. Martinez doubled to right, knocking in Cabrera to make it 6-3. With Jones still in the game, Andy Dirks drove a fly ball to right-center for a three-run home run, putting the Tigers within a run at 6-5.

Finally, Jones was replaced with Addison Reed. Unfortunately for the Sox, Reed couldn’t find the strike zone. Omar Infante walked, then advanced to second base on a sacrifice bunt. Reed then walked Alex Avila and Austin Jackson to load the bases. Hunter lifted a sacrifice fly to right field to push across the tying run. Reed then walked Cabrera to re-load the bases before being pulled for lefty Donny Veal. Veal retired Fielder to escape the jam.

In the 12th, walks continued to hurt the White Sox bullpen. Don Kelly, pinch-hitting for Cabrera who left with an injured groin, walked to lead off the inning against Jake Petricka. Fielder grounded out, but moved Kelly to second in the process. Petricka intentionally walked Martinez, then unintentionally walked Dirks. Finally, Infante reached on an infield single to push across Kelly for the walk-off 7-6 victory. Quite an exhilarating final four innings, as you can see in the game graph on FanGraphs.

  1. yankeepunk3000 - Sep 21, 2013 at 11:46 PM

    well let’s be honest being down 6 runs against the bullpen is really being up by 2 against any other teams bp. So this isn’t a big story.

    • beelza - Sep 22, 2013 at 2:24 AM

      In eight days Yankees have no bullpen. But enjoy the long playoff run.

  2. historiophiliac - Sep 21, 2013 at 11:49 PM

    I didn’t sit down for most of the 9th…a good part of the 10th…part of the 11th…and the last of the 12th! Boy was that exciting! Usually, we don’t score much after the 7th. Wahoooo!!!

    • nbjays - Sep 22, 2013 at 1:48 AM

      Because, you know… Don Kelly.

      • historiophiliac - Sep 22, 2013 at 10:54 AM

        Now that’s just mean.

  3. earpaniac - Sep 22, 2013 at 12:49 AM

    This is a fitting capper to the Sox season.

  4. b453841l - Sep 22, 2013 at 12:55 AM

    Did Hawk Harrelson’s heart explode?

    • normcash - Sep 22, 2013 at 12:17 PM

      After the Tigers tied the game on Hunter’s sac fly, there was a long pause on the Sox
      telecast…finally, Harrelson said, “Unfrigginbeleivable!”

  5. beelza - Sep 22, 2013 at 2:27 AM

    Hawks got new meds., too bad b/c when Sox suffer misfortune, He’s got more entertaining personalities than Robin Williams.

  6. misterj167 - Sep 22, 2013 at 10:59 AM

    Another reason I love baseball. You can’t stand around and let the clock run out.

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