Final in 12

Series: Game 2 of 3

Series tied 1-1 (as of 9/25)

Game 1: Tuesday, September 24
Detroit 2Final
Kansas City 17
Game 2: Wednesday, September 25
Detroit 7Final
in 12
Kansas City 6
Game 3: Thursday, September 26
Detroit 2Final
Kansas City 7

Tigers 7

(55-102, 22-55 away)

Royals 6

(61-97, 36-44 home)

    8:05 PM ET, September 25, 2002

    Kauffman Stadium, Kansas City, Missouri 

    23456789101112 R H E
    DET 01000100001 7 - -
    KC 00000001000 6 - -

    W: A. Bernero (4-7)

    L: J. Hill (0-1)

    Simon's fourth hit helps set up Tigers' win

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Randall Simon didn't forget how to hit.

    Simon
    Simon

    Simon, who played just two of the previous 13 games while the Tigers looked at prospects, had four hits Wednesday night, including one that moved up the winning run for Chris Truby's sacrifice fly in the 12th inning as Detroit beat the Kansas City Royals 7-6.

    "He's incredible,'' manager Luis Pujols said. "The man knows how to hit.''

    Simon's .500 career average (9-of-18) against Royals starter Paul Byrd convinced Pujols to put Simon into the lineup.

    "A couple of days ago I told him to get ready to play in Kansas City, because I looked at the matchups,'' Pujols said. "He's a good hitter. I'll probably play him again tomorrow. It's hard to be out of the lineup for a week or 10 days and come in and hit four ropes like that.''

    Simon, hitting .302 after his 4-for-6 night, was glad for the opportunity.

    "It's great to know that if he gives me the chance I can come through,'' he said. "I know I have the ability to hit. I'm a player that wants to be out there every day. But those young guys need to play so they can prove what they can do.''

    Carlos Pena led off the 12th with a single and Simon singled for his fourth hit of the game, sending Pena to third. Truby then hit a fly ball to right field, enabling Pena to score easily.

    Adam Bernero (4-7) got the win, pitching three scoreless innings.

    Jeremy Hill (0-1) got the loss.

    An error by shortstop Omar Infante helped the Royals score the tying run in the ninth. Infante let Raul Ibanez's potential double-play grounder roll through his legs with one out, and Joe Randa's RBI single made it 6-all.

    "You don't see that too often. Sometimes you have to be patient with young kids,'' Pujols said. "The ball was hit hard and he tried to come up too quickly. The ball just barely went under his glove. He's a reliable fielder. I was glad to see everybody in the dugout pat him on the back.''

    The game got off to a high-scoring start, with Kansas City taking a 5-4 lead after only one inning.

    Simon hit his 19th homer in the Detroit third, tying it at 5.

    The Tigers took a 6-5 lead in the seventh when Hiram Bocachica doubled with two outs off Paul Byrd and Pena singled. Detroit took advantage of what may have been a little revenge in the first.

    With two outs, Byrd hit Robert Fick with a pitch in the right leg. In Tuesday's game, Royals star Mike Sweeney was hit by a pitch by Matt Anderson, a friend of former Tigers pitcher Jeff Weaver. Last year, Weaver and Sweeney were involved in a bench-clearing brawl.

    Pena followed with a double, Simon hit a two-run single and Shane Halter hit a two-run homer for a 4-0 lead. Fick was replaced in right field by Bocachica in the bottom of the first after complaining of stiffness in his right hamstring. He's listed as day to day, though he probably won't play on Thursday. Pujols said the injury was not related to his getting hit by the pitch.

    Chuck Knoblauch led off the Royals first with a single and Carlos Beltran hit his 27th home run, giving him 100 RBI.

    With one out, Ibanez grounded back to pitcher Steve Sparks, whose throw went over Pena's head at first for a two-base error.

    Michael Tucker hit an RBI single, Angel Berroa doubled home a run and Neifi Perez hit an RBI single.

    "It's not too many times that we score so many runs in the first inning. That was a long inning,'' Pujols said. "They hit a lot of good knuckleballs that were down. A lot of times, it's because the pitches are up. After that first inning, (Sparks) did a great job. He threw the ball well.

    "They hit good knuckleballs early. He kept throwing it and I guess they kept missing.''

    The Royals had a chance to score in the bottom of the seventh when Randa blooped a two-out single to right with Sweeney on first. Bocachica threw to second, catching Randa in a rundown, and then Sweeney tried to score and was thrown out by Infante.

    Game notes


    It was the Tigers' first victory in four extra-inning road games this year. ... Beltran became the first player in Royals history to have 100 runs scored and 100 RBI in a season three times. He also accomplished the feat in 1999 and last year. ... With two hits in three at-bats off Byrd, Simon improved to 11-for-21 (.524) with three home runs in his career off the right-hander. ... Sweeney went 0-for-4, dropping his average to .344. He's second in the American League in hitting to Manny Ramirez of Boston (.347). ... A.J. Hinch returned to the Kansas City lineup for the first time since his wife gave birth to the couple's first child Monday.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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