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Blake's homer sends Tigers to 5th loss in row

CLEVELAND (AP) -- Carlos Pena did everything in his power to help
the Detroit Tigers win, hitting three home runs.

They needed a fourth.

Casey Blake's two-run homer in the seventh inning helped
Cleveland overcome Pena's three-homer night and sent the Indians to
a 10-9 win Monday over the Tigers, who have lost five straight.

The first of 19 matchups between the AL's two worst teams looked
more like a weekend softball game as the clubs combined for 19
runs, 24 hits, three errors and a couple bonehead plays.

"I guess it was fun for the fans," said Pena, who came in with
just three homers and nine RBI. "But I wanted the win. Then this
would have been a perfect night."

Pena hit a leadoff homer in the second, a grand slam in the
third and connected for a two-run shot in the seventh for the
Tigers, who blew 6-0 and 9-7 leads.

His seven RBI were a career high and he became the first
Detroit player to hit three homers in a game since June 24, 2000,
when Bobby Higginson did it -- also against the Indians.

With a chance to become the 15th player in history to hit four
homers, Pena flied out to shallow center for the final out in the
ninth.

"That was pretty dramatic that Carlos came up for the last
out," said Cleveland outfielder Jody Gerut, a teammate of Pena's
in the Cape Cod League in 1996. "I know him real well and I know
he can drive the ball."

Pena is the third major league player to hit three homers in a
game this season. Milwaukee's Richie Sexson did it April 25, at
Atlanta, and Cincinnati's Aaron Boone on May 8 against St. Louis.

Gerut hit a three-run homer for the Indians, who improved to 8-8
in May after going 7-20 in April.

Trailing 6-0, the Indians scored three times in the third, once
in the fourth and fifth and tied it 7-7 in the sixth on Matt Lawton's two-run single.

Pena's third homer gave the Tigers a 9-7 lead in the seventh,
but the Indians got three in the bottom half on Josh Bard's RBI
double and Blake's fourth homer, a shot to center off Jamie Walker
(1-1).

It was Blake's error that helped the Tigers score five runs in
the third.

"The five-run inning was on my shoulders," he said. "I messed
up that play. All I could ask for was a chance to redeem myself."

Billy Traber (2-2) got the win in relief and David Riske pitched
1 2/3 innings for his first save.

The Tigers took a 6-0 lead with a five-run third -- their biggest
inning since April 9 -- that was set up by two errors by the
Indians' infield.

Blake bobbled Eugene Kingsale's bunt for an error, and after a
sacrifice and walk loaded the bases, Dmitri Young hit a grounder
that first baseman Ben Broussard should have at least knocked down.

One run scored on the play, and Pena followed by launching his
first career slam into the seats in right to give the Tigers a 6-0
lead.

The homer snapped an 0-for-20 slump with the bases loaded for
Detroit, which hadn't gotten a hit with three on since Ramon Santiago's double on April 9 -- a span of 314 innings.

Even with the six-run lead, Detroit manager Alan Trammell knew
it was too early to chalk up a win.

"We haven't had too many of them," he said, "and to lose it
like that is not what you're looking for."

Gerut cut Detroit's lead in half in the bottom of the inning
with his three-run shot off Detroit starter Gary Knotts.

In the fifth, Gerut followed a double by Milton Bradley with an
RBI single as the Indians closed to 6-5.

Pena connected for his first homer leading off the second
against Cleveland starter Jason Davis, who held Seattle to four
hits in seven innings in his previous outing.

Game notes
Among the game's forgettable moments: Cleveland rookie
Brandon Phillips was picked off second base; Detroit's Brandon Inge
reaching on Phillips' fielding error and getting picked off
himself, and Detroit pitcher Steve Sparks slipping and falling as
he tried to pick up a grounder. ... Bradley extended his streak of
reaching base to 29 games, the longest active run in the majors.
... The last AL player to hit four homers in a game was Seattle's
Mike Cameron, who did it May 2 last season. ... The Indians (2:35)
and Tigers (2:31) entered the series averaging the quickest games
in the majors. Last season, Cleveland's games took an average of
2:54 to play.