Page 16-Friday, July 7, 1978-The Michigan Daily
JASON CELEBRATES BIRTHDAY WITH HOMER
Bengal bats boom again, 8-4
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By ALAN FANGER m
Special tothe Daily
DETROIT-The Tigers celebrated.
Jason Thompson's 24th birthday in #S
grand fashion last night, and the All-
Star first baseman marked the oc-
casion with some presents of his own.
Thompson, who earlier in the day was
selected as the lone Tiger represen-
tative in Tuesday's annual classic,
knocked in four runs, three on a first in-
ning homer, as Detroit blasted the
Cleveland Indians 8-4 at Tiger Stadium.
The Bengal victory finished off a sweep
of the two-game series.
FOR THE SECOND night in a row, M-'-E -'
Detroit pounced on Indian pitching' Tiger miscues to push across three n
sheling starter Rick Waits (6-9) for T
three runs in each of the first two in- of their own in the third inni
nings. Three Cleveland errors also knocking Tiger starter Jim Slaton
aided the Tiger cause, two of them at of the box with yet anothe poor pitch
the expense of the normally sharp- performance. Fortunately for
handed third baseman Buddy Bell. veteran right hander, he received so
The Indians were not to be undone, welcome relief from Bob Sykes (4
however, as they took advantage of two the eventual winner, and John Hiller
tightens N es
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The Tigers exploded with one out in
the first inning, as Lou Whitaker
singled and stole second. Rusty Staub
then walked, and the scenario was set
for Thompson to belt his 19th round
tripper off the facing of the rightfield
WAITS SURVIVED a minor threat
after the home run, despite some shod-
dy fielding by Bell.
The fireworks continued in the second
when Tiger catcher Lance Parrish led
off with a soft single to center. The
Tribe then committed two costly
mistakes, first when ex-Tiger Tom
Veryzer failed to convert Alan Tram-
mell's soft grounder into a doubleplay,
and then when catcher Gary Alexan-
der's snap throw sailed high over first
baseman Andre Thornton's head into
rightfield, allowing Trammell to reach
LeFlore then walked, and Whitaker
stroked another of his patented singles
to center to score Trammell. Rusty
Staub singled to right scoring LeFlore,
and Thompson's groundout sent home
Whitaker to up the Tiger margin to 6-0.
The Indians countered with three
runs in their third, as Tiger bobbles
emerged left and right.
INDIAN RIGHTFIELDER Jim
Norris, who started in place of the fum-
bling Paul Dade, opened with a long fly
to center, which escaped LeFlore's
glove for an error, sending Norris
safely into second. After Rick Manning
sacrificed Norris to third, Bell hit a
high hopper to Whitaker who failed to
field the ball cleanly, permitting Norris
to cross the plate with the first
The Tribe wasn't finished yet,
however, as Thornton poked a two-run
homer into the leftfield upper deck.
Suddenly it was a 6-3 ballgame and
although all three runs off Slaton were
unearned, Tiger manager Ralph Houk
opted to go to the bullpen where lefty
Sykers was warming up.
Sykes worked five innings of solid
relief, his finest pitching performance
iq more than a month, before giving
way to Hiller with two out in the eighth.
The ace lefthander then put out the side
to earn his ninth save of the campaign.
DETROIT PADDED its lead with one
run in the fifth and another in the six-
th-the latter coming off the bat of
Steve Kemp, who socked his fifth home
run of the year.
The win moved the Tigers to within
one game of the .500 mark, at the half-
way point in the season. This marks a
four-game improvement over the 1977
season, when at the same time they
were 36-45 and in sixth place.
The Tigers now travel to Texas for a
three-game series before the All-Star
break next Monday. Dave Rozema
(3-4) will oppose Ranger Dock Ellis
(7-3) in the opener of the three-game
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Dave Lopes
blasted a grand slam homer in the bot-
tom of the 11th inning yesterday to give
the Los Angeles Dodgers a 5-1 victory
over the Atlanta Braves.
Lopes' homer, his 10th of the year and
his first career grand slam, came off
Craig Skok, 1-1, the third Atlanta pit-
Steve Garvey started the inning with
a single and was sacrificed to second by
Dusty Baker. Rick Monday and was
walked intentionally and the bases
were loaded when second baseman
Jerry Royster booted Johnny Cates'
Skok got winning pitcher Charlie
Hough on a shallow fly as the runners
held but Lopes then walloped a drive in-
to the left field seats. The victory lifted
the Dodgers into a tie with the idle Cin-
cinnati Reds for second place in the
National League West, three games
behind San Francisco.
For eight innings, the game was a
pitching duel between Niekro and Rick
Rhoden. The Braves took At 1-0 lead in
the second. Jeff Burroughs and Biff
Pocoroba led off with singles and
Burroughs scored as Bob Horner
grounded into a double play.
Los Angeles, shut out on six hits for
eight innings, tied the game in the nin-
th. Niekro walked Ron Cey and Garvey
with one out and Baker greeted Gene
Garber with a single that scored pinch-
rnnner Teddv Martine