DETROIT -- Detroit Tigers second baseman Lou Whitaker was determined not to let Toronto reliever Duane Ward get an advantage over him.
'I didn't want to take a good fastball and put myself in a hole,' said Whitaker, who slammed a two-out, three-run pinch homer to tie the game in the ninth Wednesday.
The Tigers went on to defeat the Blue Jays 5-4 in the 10th when pinch runner Milt Cuyler scored from third on a passed ball by catcher Pat Borders. Whitaker hit the first pitch to him from Ward, 0-1, into theupper deck in right field.
'He's the kind of pitcher who'll challenge you, so I was expecting a fastball or a slider,' Whitaker said. 'I won't say I was trying to hit a home run. I was trying to pull it and see what happened.'
Ward retired the first two batters in the 10th, but Pete Incaviglia singled off the glove of second baseman Roberto Alomar. Cuyler ran for Incaviglia, stole second and continued to third on Borders' throwing error. Ward's first pitch to Travis Fryman caromed off Borders' glove, allowing Cuyler to score.
'Alex (third base coach Alex Grammas) told me to watch for a passed ball or wild pitch,' Cuyler said. 'I saw that (Borders) couldn't reach the ball, but I froze for a second because I wanted to make sure it got past him far enough for me to score.'
Borders said he didn't get crossed up by the pitch.
'It was a sinking fastball,' he said. 'We were trying to keep the ball low and away. Especially after we got a fastball up to Whitaker.'
Ward, who relieved starter Denis Boucher in the eighth, struck out the first two batters he faced in the ninth, but pinch-hitter Mickey Tettleton singled to right and John Shelby beat out a grounder to second for a hit. Whitaker, batting for Tony Phillips, drilled Ward's first pitch into the upper deck in right field for his second homer.
'I told Lou to be ready if we got two men on,' said Tiger manager Sparky Anderson. 'We were going to give it one shot. Lou pulled this one from the dead.'
Mike Henneman, 1-0, retired the three batters he faced in the 10th inning after relieving Dan Petry, who held Toronto scoreless on two hits in a 6 1/3-inning relief stint.
Boucher allowed four hits, walked three, hit two batters and struck out two in seven innings. He gave up two hits in the first inning, then held the Tigers hitless until they collected a pair of singles in the seventh.
'That's the first time I've been one out away from a win and had this happen, but I'm sure it will happen again,' said Boucher, who was making his second major-league start. 'I'll get that first one next time.'
Kelly Gruber opened the scoring for the Blue Jays when he hit his third homer of the season off starter Steve Searcy in the first inning.
Detroit tied the score, 1-1, in the bottom of the first on a one-out double by Alan Trammell and Rob Deer's single to left field.
Toronto chased Searcy with three runs in the third. Singles by Glenallen Hill and Mookie Wilson and a walk to Alomar loaded the bases with none out. Gruber followed with a sacrifice fly to score Hill. Joe Carter punched a single to right, scoring Wilson. Pat Tabler walked and Mark Whiten hit a sacrifice fly to boost the Blue Jays' lead to 4-1.