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Laird Homers, Leads Tigers Over White Sox 5-2

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Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Rick Porcello pitches against the Chicago White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field on April 15, 2012 in Chicago, Illinois. Both teams wore the number 42 in honor of Jackie Robinson Day.  (Photo by Scott Boehm/Getty Images)

Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Rick Porcello pitches against the Chicago White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field on April 15, 2012 in Chicago, Illinois. Both teams wore the number 42 in honor of Jackie Robinson Day. (Photo by Scott Boehm/Getty Images)

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CHICAGO (AP) – Gerald Laird homered among his three hits to back a strong outing by Rick Porcello and lead the Detroit Tigers to a 5-2 victory over the White Sox on Sunday, snapping Chicago’s four-game winning streak.

Porcello (1-0) was sharp against an aggressive Chicago lineup. He allowed five hits, struck out four and didn’t issue a walk in 7 2-3 innings.

Laird homered to left against Chris Sale (1-1) leading off the third. Detroit added single runs in the fifth and sixth, both runs scoring on wild pitches, and two in the ninth.

The White Sox brought the tying run to the plate in the ninth, but Jose Valverde struck out Dayan Viciedo to end the game.

Sale breezed through the first but struggled to command his off-speed pitches after that, racking up 102 pitches in five-plus innings. He struck out five and walked two, managing to keep the damage to a minimum.

Prince Fielder doubled, scored and drove in a run for Detroit. Delmon Young added two hits and is batting .350 over 243 lifetime at-bats against the White Sox.

Laird hit a wind-aided double in the fifth, then singled and scored in the ninth, in addition to his first home run of the season.

Viciedo hit his second homer for Chicago, a solo shot in the eighth. A.J. Pierzynski singled in a run in the ninth.

Eduardo Escobar singled to chase Porcello in the eighth. Reliever Joaquin Benoit then walked Alejandro De Aza before striking Brent Morel to end the threat. Morel chased a pitch in the dirt on a full count.

Adam Dunn doubled twice for Chicago. Paul Konerko doubled against Porcello and improved to 8 for 20 lifetime against the righty, who racked up 12 of his 23 outs on groundballs.

Jhonny Peralta scored on Sale’s wild pitch in the fifth and Fielder came home on reliever Nate Jones’ wild pitch an inning later.

The Tigers tacked on two runs against the Chicago bullpen in the ninth, on RBI singles by Ramon Santiago and Fielder.

Detroit salvaged the last game of the three-game weekend series, winning for the 22nd time in 30 games against the White Sox. The Tigers have won 12 of their last 18 at U.S. Cellular Field.

After scoring 40 runs while winning five of their first six games, the Tigers scored just three runs in dropping the first two games of this series.

NOTES: Konerko has a hit in all eight of Chicago’s games this season. Tigers outfielder Clete Thomas was claimed off waivers by the Minnesota Twins on Saturday. Thomas made Detroit’s opening-day roster and played in three games before being designated for assignment last week. . Brandon Inge (left groin strain) got his first start of the season as Detroit’s designated hitter. He is expected to get regular duty at second base this season, which is not one of the five positions he’s played thus far during his 12-year big league career.
(© 2012 by STATS LLC and Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited.)

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