ST. LOUIS(AP) Rookie
beat the heat and the St. Louis Cardinals, whose starter had to be carried off the field.
Porcello won for the seventh time in nine starts while pitching in 90-degree heat and the
shook off an offensive drought with a four-run first inning in a 6-3 victory on Thursday that avoided a three-game sweep.'
''It was a real good win for us because we were probably ripe for the sweep, to be honest,'' manager Jim Leyland said. ''A
long, grueling trip. It would have been easy to say 'Let's go home, it's been a long trip.'''
homered in the eighth for the Tigers, who had scored three or fewer runs in their previous seven games. Detroit ended a four-game
losing streak and won for the first time in six games at 4-year-old Busch Stadium counting three losses to end the 2006 World
''It was huge,'' said
, who had an RBI double in the first. ''We've been struggling with the bats for a while now and to come out and get a couple
of hits was a good sign.''
Porcello (8-4) allowed three runs in 5 2-3 innings. He worked out of trouble in the first, second and fifth, stranding two
runners in each inning and is 7-1 with a 2.64 ERA in his last nine starts.
''I thought I threw the ball OK,'' Porcello said. ''I left a couple of fastballs up but the changeup was really good and bailed
me out of a couple of situations where I thought it could have been a lot worse.''
The right-hander leads AL rookies in wins and is 3-0 with a 1.45 ERA in three interleague starts.
, making his first appearance in six days, walked the bases loaded with one out in the ninth before inducing a double play
for his 13th save in 13 chances.
made a dramatic exit, cramping in his right leg and collapsing in front of the mound after striking out
to end the seventh. Pineiro, who allowed one earned run but left trailing 4-3, was carried off the field by Ankiel and
after failing in an attempt to reach the dugout on his own.
''I felt embarrassed,'' Pineiro said. ''I tried to walk it off but I couldn't get up and I fell right back down,'' Pineiro
said. ''I said 'It hurts too much, just get me in there fast.'''
Pineiro (5-8) allowed four runs and four hits in the first, then retired 16 in a row starting with the last out of that inning.
He gave up only one more hit, a leadoff single by
in the seventh.
, activated from the 15-day disabled list for social anxiety disorder earlier in the day, struck out as a pinch hitter in
The Tigers opened the game with singles by
and Polanco, and four players had an RBI apiece. Only one of the runs was earned after third baseman
's RBI grounder.
A wild throw on Pineiro's poor bunt by Laird, the catcher, handed the Cardinals a run in the second and
added an RBI infield hit to cut the deficit to 4-2. St. Louis parlayed two hits and
's RBI infield grounder to cut the gap to a run in the fifth.
NOTES: Cardinals manager
Tony La Russa
won his 100th game against the Tigers on Tuesday and is in triple figures against 16 teams, by far the most in major league
history according to the Elias Sports Bureau. ... Hall of Famer
attended the game on his 70th birthday. ...
, benched ''indefinitely'' by Leyland, is a .409 career hitter (9 for 22) against Pineiro. ...
grounded out as a pinch hitter for hot-hitting rookie
in the seventh and played first base the rest of the game and flied out in the ninth. ... Pineiro is 6-2 with a 2.66 ERA against
the Tigers, lowest against any AL opponent. ... The homers by Polanco and Thames came off rookie RHP
, who has surrendered four homers in his last six appearances over 3 2-3 innings.