Rangers overcome eight-run deficit

American League round-up
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The Independent Online

A five-run deficit meant nothing to Texas. And an eight-run lead wasn't good enough for Oakland.

A five-run deficit meant nothing to Texas. And an eight-run lead wasn't good enough for Oakland.

"In my 34 years, you talk about having seen it all, but this was proof there are things that you haven't seen," Rangers manager Johnny Oates said after Friday night's 17-16 win. "I don't care how much fight you've got, you don't come back from a deficit like that."

The A's and Rangers combined for six homers, six doubles and 37 hits in the majors' highest-scoring game of the season.

The Rangers led 5-0 after the second, then trailed 15-7 after six innings. Texas was down 16-10 before tying it with a six-run eighth.

Pinch-hitter Mike Lamb, batting .182, singled home the winning run off Jeff Tam (0-2) in the bottom of the ninth.

"Now you will believe me when I say no lead is safe in this day and age," Oakland manager Art Howe said.

The teams fell three runs short of the AL record for runs, set when the Boston Red Sox beat the Philadelphia Athletics 22-14 on June 29, 1950. Eighteen players scored, matching the AL mark set in that Red Sox-A's game.

"It was fun," Lamb said. "Balls flying all over the place, a lot of runs being scored. It was nerve-wracking."

In other AL games, it was New York 12, Baltimore 10; Toronto 11, Cleveland 10; Detroit 10, Minnesota 8; Boston 5, Tampa Bay 3; Kansas City 5, Chicago 1; and Anaheim 6, Seattle 5. There were 119 runs, nine short of the AL record set May 30, 1932.

Scott Sheldon drove in four runs for the Rangers, who had 21 hits. Ben Grieve drove in four for the Athletics, who got home runs by Frank Menechino, Ramon Hernandez, Jeremy Giambi, Adam Piatt and Terrence Long.

John Wetteland (1-1), the only one of 10 pitchers to not allow a run, allowed one hit in the ninth for the victory.

Yankees 12, Orioles 10

Jorge Posada hit a three-run homer off B.J. Ryan (1-2) in the ninth at Yankee Stadium.

Baltimore relievers allowed seven runs in the final three innings, spoiling Scott Erickson's first start this season.

Paul O'Neill led off the ninth with a homer off Mike Timlin, making it 10-9. Bernie Williams singled to knock out Timlin, and Ryan walked Tino Martinez. Posada's hit made a winner off Jeff Nelson (5-0).

Blue Jays 11, Indians 10

Darrin Fletcher had a game-winning single in the bottom of the ninth for Toronto, sending Cleveland to its sixth straight loss.

Toronto rallied after trailing 3-1, 8-4 and 10-9, while the Indians came back after falling behind 4-3 and 9-8.

Jose Cruz's two-run homer off Tom Martin in the sixth, his 11th of the season, put Toronto ahead 9-8, but Jim Thome regained the lead with a two-run homer in the seventh off Lance Painter.

Alex Gonzalez tied it at 10 with a one-out homer in the eighth off Paul Shuey (1-1). Billy Koch (2-0) was the winner.

Tigers 10, Twins 8

Detroit scored five runs in the seventh at Minnesota after rookie catcher Matt LeCroy was called for catcher's interference for the second straight game.

Bobby Higginson, who homered in the fourth after LeCroy lost track of his foul ball that hit a speaker, lined out to first, but was awarded the bag because he hit LeCroy's mitt.

Hector Carrasco (3-2) gave up an RBI groundout to Gregg Jefferies, then threw a run-scoring wild pitch. Deivi Cruz and pinch-hitter Wendell Magee followed with RBI singles for an 8-7 lead.

Danny Patterson (1-0) won for the first time since last Aug. 10, and Todd Jones pitched the ninth for his seventh save.

Red Sox 5, Devil Rays 3

Brian Daubach doubled twice and Carl Everett hit his ninth homer for Boston.

Ramon Martinez (2-2), staked to a 5-1 lead after four innings at Fenway Park, allowed three runs and eight hits in five-plus innings, and Derek Lowe got six outs for his sixth save.

Dave Eiland (1-1) gave up five runs and eight hits in 3 1-3 innings.

Royals 5, White Sox 1

Chris Fussell (2-1), banished to the minor leagues last month with a 6.19 ERA, returned to pitch a career-high seven innings, allowing one run and six hits.

Joe Randa had three hits and two RBIs, and Mike Sweeney doubled, homered and drove in two runs for Kansas City, which raised its home record to a league-best 12-4.

Cal Eldred (2-1) allowed five runs and 10 hits in 6 1-3 innings.

Angels 6, Mariners 5

Kent Bottenfield (3-3) allowed four hits in 6 1-3 scoreless innings and struck out seven. Tim Salmon homered and doubled twice for visiting Anaheim, which led 5-0.

Troy Percival got his eighth save. Aaron Sele (2-2) gave up five runs and eight hits in 7 2-3 innings.

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