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American League Roundup : Lansford’s 4 Hits Help Welch Win 6th in Row

One of the reasons the Dodgers let Tommy John get away a decade ago was the realization that in Bob Welch they had an outstanding young pitcher in the wings.

Welch is now a 31-year-old veteran. Surprisingly, John, who will be 45 Sunday, is still around.

The former Dodgers hooked up Friday in New York, and youth prevailed.

Welch, now with the Oakland Athletics, was backed by a 14-hit attack and improved his record to 7-2 with an 11-3 victory.

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The Athletics, who have the best record in the majors (29-11), knocked out John before he could get anyone out in the fourth inning and handed him his first loss after two victories.

Once again, Carney Lansford led the Athletics’ assault. He had four singles, scored a run, drove in a run and lifted his major league-leading average to .396.

Dave Parker hit the only home run of the night for the Athletics, but they kept up relentless pressure on four Yankee pitchers.

The Athletics obtained Welch from the Dodgers during the off-season by giving up shortstop Alfredo Griffin. After a slow start, Welch has become a major asset.

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This was his sixth victory in a row, but he wasn’t as sharp as in his previous three outings. He gave up three runs and seven hits in seven innings. In his previous three starts, he gave up just 3 runs in 24 innings. He balked in one of the runs.

It was the 14th win in the last 16 road games for the Athletics, who lead the West by eight games.

Lansford is a big reason for the Athletics’ success. He has been especially productive in the last five games. He had at least two hits in each and is 16 for 24, having scored 6 runs and driven in 6 others.

Ron Hassey drove in three runs for the Athletics, who trounced the Yankees without any help from Mark McGwire or Jose Canseco, their big guns.

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“Jose and I stunk tonight,” McGwire said. “But you just can’t key on one or two players in this lineup. There are nine players, and that’s what it takes to be a good team.”

The Athletics, who are batting .321 with runners in scoring position, overtook the Yankees in the scoring race. They have 237 runs, the Yankees 236.

“I don’t think there’s too much of a difference between our team and theirs,” the Yankees’ Don Mattingly said. “They’re dangerous up and down their lineup. They’ve got some old guys and some new guys. It’s just which team plays better in a certain game. Tonight, it was them.”

The Athletics clearly impressed John and the crowd of 43,251.

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“If he doesn’t win over there,” John said, indicating Oakland Manager Tony LaRussa, “he should be sued for malpractice.”

Kansas City 4, Cleveland 3--The Raiders can’t be happy with the way Bo Jackson’s baseball career is developing.

Jackson’s two-out double in the eighth inning at Kansas City scored Bill Pecota with the winning run and raised his average to .290.

In his second full season, Jackson, who has hit 8 home runs and driven in 21 runs, is making rapid strides.

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The Indians, who could have moved into first place in the East with a victory, rallied from a 3-1 deficit to tie the score on Cory Snyder’s two-run home run in the seventh. But Bo ruined their plans in the eighth and left the Indians a half-game out of the lead.

Detroit 14, Chicago 6--The Tigers are also closing in on the Yankees in the East. With Alan Trammell hitting an upper-deck home run, a double and two singles at Chicago, the Tigers pulled within a game of the Yankees.

Ray Knight and Darrell Evans each had 3 hits as the Tigers pounded out 20 to win their third game in a row.

Frank Tanana (7-2) pitched a strong six innings for the victory. He was almost perfect, except for the fourth inning, when he gave up all three hits and three runs.

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Former Dodger Jerry Reuss (2-2) was pounded by the Tigers and failed to make it through the third inning. He gave up four runs and six hits.

Toronto 3, Milwaukee 1--Jim Clancy earned his first victory in a month, and Lloyd Moseby homered against the slumping Brewers at Milwaukee.

Clancy (2-4), winless in his previous five starts, needed help from David Wells after giving up a single and a double with one out in the seventh. Wells struck out B.J. Surhoff and disposed of Greg Brock on a bouncer with the bases loaded.

Wells picked up his second save with two more hitless innings.

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Seattle 3, Baltimore 2--Alvin Davis singled home Harold Reynolds in the eighth inning at Baltimore, and the Orioles’ fell to 6-34.

An error by second baseman Billy Ripken set up the tie-breaking run.

The Orioles had an early 2-0 lead, but the Mariners, held to one hit through six innings by Mark Williamson, got a two-run home run from Ken Phelps in the seventh to tie it.


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