The 38-year-old Ordonez, a six-time All-Star who won the American League batting title in 2007, didn’t play this year after being hampered by ankle injuries the past two seasons.
Ordonez spent 15 Major League Baseball seasons with the Tigers and Chicago White Sox, hitting .309 with 294 home runs, 2,156 hits and 1,236 runs batted in. Ordonez drove in three runs on two hits in his final game, a 9-6 win against the Cleveland Indians on Sept. 27 of last season.
Ordonez’s three-run homer gave the Tigers a sweep over the Oakland Athletics in the American League Championship Series in 2006, sending them to the World Series for the first time since 1984, where they lost to the St. Louis Cardinals. The Tigers paid tribute to Ordonez before today’s game.
“I don’t look to my personal numbers,” Ordonez said. “I enjoyed it the most when we won.”
In today’s game at Comerica Park in Detroit, Derek Jeter hit a home run off Justin Verlander’s first pitch. Verlander then walked Curtis Granderson and Alex Rodriguez before Granderson scored on Mark Teixeira’s sacrifice fly to put New York ahead 2-0 in the first inning.
Rodriguez homered in the third before Prince Fielder got Detroit’s lone run with a home run in the fourth.
Granderson scored on triple in the fifth by Robinson Cano, who then came home on a throwing error by Tigers second baseman Danny Worth.
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