CHICAGO — Jhonny Peralta and Ryan Raburn helped the Tigers knock the White Sox further back in the AL Central race.
They ignited the Tigers offense with back-to-back homers in the second inning and Detroit routed Chicago 14-4 for its 10th straight win on Monday night.
“I don’t know if there is hotter team out there right now,” White Sox starter John Danks said. “It’s embarrassing but at the same time you have to realize how good they’re playing.”
It’s the Tigers’ first 10-game streak since they won 11 in a row in September 1968 before going on to win the World Series that year.
Raburn finished the game with four hits and three RBI and Peralta added two hits and three RBI for the Tigers, who reduced their magic number to six in the AL Central.
Detroit starter Rick Porcello (14-8) coasted to an easy victory. He allowed three runs on six hits in 6 2/3 innings. He allowed one of Brent Morel’s two home runs.
“We got that cushion and he got some balls on the ground and did a good job,” Tigers manager Jim Leyland said. “I think that relaxed him a little bit when we got the lead and he pitched very well, but he’s got to continue working to get the breaking stuff better and the changeup — more strikes.
“He was sick, too. He had a temperature last night, he had a fever,” Leyland said. “I was really worried about him going into the game, how strong he would be. I’m sure getting the lead helped relax him a little bit, he didn’t have to go max effort.”
The Tigers began their win streak with a sweep of the White Sox during a lopsided three-game series Sept. 3-5 in Detroit. The Tigers outscored Chicago 35-11 to sweep that series and continued to embarrass their divisional rival with a 14-run explosion on Tuesday night.
The game was eerily familiar to the 18-2 loss on Sept. 4 for the White Sox. Chicago pitching allowed 21 hits Monday night compared to the 24 in the 18-2 loss.
Danks (6-12) lasted five innings allowing eight runs, seven earned on 11 hits.
Trailing 1-0 in the second inning, Victor Martinez led off with a single against Danks. One out later, Peralta hit a two-run shot to left giving the Tigers lead. On the next pitch, Raburn hit another ball into left-field seats to make it 3-1.
“It all started in the second inning,” said Delmon Young, who was 3 for 3 before exiting the game in the sixth inning. “Victor got on base and Jhonny hit a big home run to put us on top. We had solid at-bats and good swings today.”
Leading 3-2 in the third, Delmon Young led off with a single and advanced to third on Miguel Cabrera’s ground-rule double to right. Young scored on Alex Avila’s groundout and Cabrera scored on Peralta’s single. It was Peralta’s 19th of the season and Raburn’s 13th.
The Tigers added to their lead in the fourth and fifth innings. Jackson walked and advanced to second on a wild pitch then scored on Young’s RBI single. After a leadoff double by Avila, Raburn doubled off the wall in left-center to score Avila. Raburn advanced to third after center fielder Alejandro De Aza bobbled the ball and ended up scoring on Danks’ wild pitch to make it 8-2.
“I didn’t have fun today at all,” Danks said. “I was as frustrated as I’ve ever been. I want to finish strong. I want to have a good taste in my mouth going into the offseason. ”
The Tigers didn’t stop against reliever Josh Kinney. Kinney was tagged for five consecutive singles in the sixth, including RBI singles by Cabrera, Martinez and Avila to give the Tigers a 11-2 lead. After Peralta’s double play ball, Raburn followed with an RBI single for his fourth hit of the night. With bases loaded and two outs, Ramon Santiago, who came in the game in same inning to pinch-run for Magglio Ordonez, hit an RBI single to make it 14-2. The Tigers batter 11 in the inning and scored six runs on eight hits. Kinney somehow lasted the entire inning despite taking a liner off his back from Brandon Inge and giving up six runs on eight hits.
Juan Pierre scored on Dayan Viciedo’s groundout in the first inning and De Aza scored on Gordon Beckham’s groundout in the second inning.
Morel hit his seventh homer of the season off reliever David Pauley in the ninth.
Tigers RHP Justin Verlander, who is 20-2 since May 1, is Tuesday’s scheduled starter. Verlander leads the majors in wins with 22 and is 20-2 since May 1.
White Sox RHP Gavin Floyd is Tuesday’s scheduled starter. In 17 starts against Detroit, he is 6-1 with a 3.51 ERA.
Ordonez extended his hitting streak to 13 games.
Jackson extended his hitting streak to 16 games against the White Sox.
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