Nelson Cruz and J.J. Hardy homered, and the Baltimore Orioles hammered out 12 hits in defeating Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer and the Detroit Tigers 12-3 Thursday in the opener of their AL Division Series.
Rookie Jonathan Schoop had two hits and two RBIs for the Orioles, who turned a close game into a rout with an eight-run eighth inning against Scherzer and three ineffective relievers.
The 12 runs set a postseason record for Baltimore, making its second playoff appearance since 1997.
Game 2 of the best-of-five series is Friday at Camden Yards. Justin Verlander, the second of three straight Cy Young winners the Orioles will face, is set to go against left-hander Wei-Yin Chen.
Cruz led the majors with 40 homers during the regular season, a good portion of Baltimore's big league-best 211 long balls. His first-inning drive off Scherzer put the Orioles up 2-0 before Detroit's Victor Martinez and J.D. Martinez connected off winner Chris Tillman in the second to tie it.
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