Indians clinch a share of Central

Sunday, September 30, 2001

CLEVELAND -- Cleveland clinched at least a tie for first place in the AL Central when Travis Fryman hit a two-run single with two outs in the ninth inning, rallying the Indians to a 9-8 win over the Minnesota Twins on Saturday.

Fryman, who has played through pain in his right elbow all season, singled down the left-field line off LaTroy Hawkins as the Indians reduced their magic number to one.

They can clinch their sixth division title in seven years outright with a win Sunday in their home season finale. The Indians will have to do it without manager Charlie Manuel, who remains hospitalized with an abdominal infection.

Russell Branyan homered twice and had a career-high six RBIs for Cleveland.

ORIOLES 7, YANKEES 2

NEW YORK -- Jeff Conine's bases-loaded, two-out double highlighted a six-run second-inning and Baltimore beat New York.

The Orioles managed just two hits in the inning but took advantage of wildness by Orlando Hernandez (3-7) and rookie reliever Brandon Knight.

Hernandez walked four, forcing in a run before leaving with tightness in his right elbow. Hernandez joins a long list of injury concerns for the AL East champions as they prepare for the playoffs.

DEVIL RAYS 5, BLUE JAYS 2

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Nick Bierbrodt (2-4) allowed one run over six innings as Tampa Bay beat Toronto.

Tampa Bay has won five of six, allowing just seven earned runs over the stretch. The Devil Rays (57-97) are trying to avoid becoming the first AL team to lose 100 games since the 1996 Detroit Tigers (53-109).

Jose Cruz hit a solo homer for the Blue Jays, who have lost four straight.

TIGERS 7, RED SOX 2

DETROIT -- Steve Sparks (13-9) pitched his major league-leading seventh complete game and Randall Simon's two-run single highlighted a four-run fifth inning.

The Tigers have beaten the Red Sox four times in a row. Boston (76-77) has lost 21 of 26 to drop below .500 for the first time since beginning the year 1-2.

-- From wire reports

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