Avila HR lifts Tigers to 3-2 win over White Sox

Alex Avila hit a two-run homer in the ninth inning off substitute closer J.J. Putz on Saturday night, lifting the Detroit Tigers to a 3-2 victory over the Chicago White Sox. The White Sox have lost six of nine games to go from leading the AL Central by 1 1/2 games to trailing the Minnesota Twins by two. The Tigers won for only the eighth time since the All-Star break and remain 10 1/2 games out. Putz (5-4), working the ninth inning as Bobby Jenks sat out with back spasms, opened by giving up Brandon Inge's single. After Ryan Raburn struck out, Avila took Putz's next pitch over the left-field wall. It was Avila's fifth homer of the year and first since July 10. He platoons at catcher with Gerald Laird and is batting .214. (Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)