White Sox 5, Tigers 0
By LARRY LAGE, AP Sports Writer
April 11, 2003
DETROIT (AP) -- The Detroit Tigers aren't proud of what they accomplished.
Detroit became the first team ever to lose its first nine games in consecutive seasons, falling 5-0 to the Chicago White Sox on Friday night.
``It's definitely not something to be proud of,'' first baseman Carlos Pena said. ``But we wear that on our sleeve -- we're 0-9. We were 0-9 last year too. We're the Tigers, that's where we are right now.
``But we're not going to bow our heads to anyone, or explain ourselves, or make excuses, or say we're sorry to anyone.''
Jose Valentin hit a two-run homer and Esteban Loaiza pitched eight scoreless innings as the White Sox won for the sixth time in seven games.
``As a player on the opposite team playing against them, I feel real comfortable,'' Valentin said. ``It doesn't mean that you're going to lay down and take advantage because they're not playing good. Let me tell you what, they're 0-9, but I don't want to be the first team to get the first 'W' for them.
``I'm sorry for them, but that's what we get paid for -- to win. It would be kind of a disappointment to us to let those guys beat us.''
The Tigers started 0-11 last year, then went on to tie Tampa Bay for the worst record in baseball at 55-106. Rookie manager Alan Trammell is still looking for his first win this season.
``I'm not a happy camper and I hope our players are not happy campers,'' Trammell said. ``What are you going to do, are you going to quit? No, that's not acceptable.''
The 1962-63 New York Mets held the record for the worst starts in consecutive seasons. They were 0-9 in 1962 as an expansion team, and 0-8 the next season.
White Sox manager Jerry Manuel was drafted by Detroit in 1972 and played 60 games with the Tigers.
``They've been a tremendous franchise for a long time,'' Manuel said.
The Tigers said 12,577 tickets were sold, but it appeared that at least a few thousand didn't show up for the historic night. Three fans ran across the field in the bottom of the ninth and were taken away by security.
D'Angelo Jimenez hit a leadoff double and scored on Valentin's fourth homer. Jimenez homered in the second to put the White Sox ahead 3-0.
Loaiza (2-0) gave up two hits, matching a career-low, and no walks while striking out three.
The Tigers have been awful offensively this season.
They have been shutout three times, have scored a major league-low 14 runs, haven't scored an earned run in 21 innings and are hitting .140.
Against Loaiza, Detroit didn't have a baserunner until Shane Halter hit a bloop single to center with one out in the fourth. Ramon Santiago led off the sixth with a bunt single.
Loaiza won his fifth straight against the Tigers and is 8-2 against them in 13 starts.
The White Sox signed Loaiza as a free agent in January after he spent the past two-plus seasons in Toronto, and he has already surpassed Manuel's expectations.
``I kind of thought he would just kind of be an innings guy, but still give you an opportunity to win a game here or there,'' Manuel said. ``He's been more than that.''
Adam Bernero (0-2) gave up three runs, six hits and three walks in seven innings.
Bernero pitched well -- after his rough start. After Valentin singled in the second following Jimenez's home run, the White Sox did not have another base hit until hitting two consecutive singles in the fifth. Bernero then retired the next eight batters.
Magglio Ordonez hit an RBI double and Paul Konerko hit a sacrifice fly inthe ninth.