Tettleton turns out lights, 4-2 Last night game decided in 14th

October 05, 1991|By Kent Baker

The old, Memorial Stadium, was serving Baltimore Orioles' baseball for its final weekend.

But it was the new, two rookie pitchers, who dominated the field last night in the final night Orioles game at Memorial Stadium.

Mike Mussina of the Orioles and Scott Aldred of the Detroit Tigers dueled through seven innings of 1-1 baseball and paved the way for a tense overtime struggle.

With 47,983 fans in the stands awaiting the post-game fireworks, the Orioles wasted chance after chance, and eventually it cost them.

Another blaster from the Orioles' past, Mickey Tettleton, gave the Tigers Round 1 of the historic series, slamming a two-run homer off Jim Poole in the 14th inning to settle a 4-2 marathon that took 4 hours, 25 minutes.

"Give him credit, the ball was down," said Orioles manager John Oates. "Jimmy may have had a little bit more of the plate than he wanted to, but that one was by his ankles."

"This was big for us," said Tettleton. "The homer was special because it ended the game. I haven't been swinging the bat that well. I was trying to hit the ball hard somewhere."

It was his 31st homer of the season and fourth against Baltimore.

The Tigers, who are battling to finish second in the American League East, went hitless for 7 1/3 straight innings, but then a double by Dave Bergman and run-scoring single by Pete Incaviglia broke the 1-1 tie in the top of the 13th.

Todd Frohwirth was the victim of the tie-breaking run after the Tigers did not manage a hit off Mussina and Gregg Olson after a two-out single by Milt Cuyler in the fifth.

Mussina pitched another brilliant game -- without getting a victory. He lowered his overall ERA to 2.87, but in his past three starts he is winless with a 1.42 ERA.

The Orioles retaliated to tie at 2 after threatening and failing to score in the ninth, 10th and 12th innings.

In the home 13th, Dwight Evans walked against David Haas and hustled all the way to third on David Segui's sacrifice. "That was outstanding," said Oates. "I don't care about his age [39], time of day, the inning. I liked it."

Scott Livingstone, the Tigers third baseman, made a strong off-balance throw to get Segui at first and Evans kept running when he saw third base uncovered.

Skeeter Barnes' return throw was a good one, with shortstop Travis Fryman running ahead of Evans. But the ball hit the runner and Leo Gomez followed with a line single to score the veteran. Cal Ripken tripled off the right-field wall with two out in the 12th, but was stranded by Joe Orsulak's fly ball.

Evans flied out with the bases loaded and two out in the 10th after singles by Juan Bell and Mike Devereaux and a walk to Orsulak off Paul Gibson.

A walk to Glenn Davis by Dan Gakeler started the Orioles' ninth, and Evans sacrificed pinch runner Orsulak to second. It was Evans' first sacrifice bunt since May 2, 1989.

Segui, who had three hits, was walked intentionally and when Chito Martinez was announced to bat for Tim Hulett, Detroit manager Sparky Anderson went to his bullpen for left-hander Gibson.

Oates countered with Gomez, who hit a long fly to right to advance Orsulak to third. But the threat ended when Chris Hoiles bounced out to second.

"We just didn't swing the bat well," said Oates. "We didn't get the clutch hit. We've lost five in a row, and that's mostly why, not getting those guys in."

Aldred left after two Orioles reached in the seventh inning, escaping the jam when Bell bounced back to the mound. Ripken, 4-for-4 with two homers against him when they first met last week, was 0-for-3 at that point.

Mussina had only one scare in the seventh and eighth when Fryman hit a long shot to center field. But Devereaux caught the ball on the warning track.

The result gave Detroit its eighth victory in the past 12 games and Haas his first in the majors.

"That's about as good a game as a fan's going to see," said Anderson. "You see one like that, you've got your money's worth."

Orioles today

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Site: Memorial Stadium

Time: 1:35 p.m.

Tigers starter: Mark Leiter (9-6, 4.14)

Orioles starter: Dave Johnson (4-8, 7.29)

Radio: WBAL (1090 AM), WTOP (1500 AM)

TV: HTS

Today's events

Gates open: 11:35 a.m.

All-time Orioles greatest lineup: (Approximately 1:18) The team -- Earl Weaver, Jim Palmer, Tippy Martinez, Terry Crowley, Rick Dempsey, Boog Powell, Bobby Grich, Brooks Robinson, Cal Ripken, Frank Robinson, Paul Blair and Ken Singleton -- will be introduced.

Fan Appreciation Day: Nearly 200 fans will walk away with memorabilia souvenirs from Memorial Stadium. The 2 grand prizes are a pair of trips for 2 to the Bahamas.

Orioles in 1990

In the Orioles' 160th game last season, they lost to the Blue Jays, 2-1. Here's where the Orioles stood:

Record .. ..Position .. GB

75-85 .. .. 5 .. .. .. 11 1/2

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