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Chess Match: Leyland's moves working

Chess Match: Leyland's moves working

With Kenny Rogers firing a gem, strategy was reduced. However, both managers had some decisions to make before the game. Things worked out better for Tigers manager Jim Leyland than Yankees manager Joe Torre.

A lineup move that worked
The situation: Leyland was looking for the best way to attack Yankees left-hander Randy Johnson.

The decision: Leyland showed his guts by making some significant changes, moving Placido Polanco to the leadoff hole while moving Curtis Granderson to the No. 9 hole.

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The outcome: Polanco responded by belting two hits and drawing a walk. Granderson, who is having a terrific series, belted a homer, scored two runs and had two RBIs.

A lineup move that didn't work
The situation: Torre originally decided to keep his lineup intact against Tigers lefty Kenny Rogers.

The decision: Torre had a change of heart about 90 minutes before game time and inserted Bernie Williams -- because of his strong history against Rogers -- and sat Gary Sheffield.

The outcome: Williams went 0-for-3 and the Yankees could have used the threat of Sheffield on a night they couldn't put anything together.

Going for it
The situation: The Tigers held a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the sixth and had Carlos Guillen on first with two outs and Pudge Rodriguez at the plate.

The decision: Where some managers might have taken the conservative approach, Leyland called for a hit-and-run.

The outcome: Rodriguez came through with an RBI double and the Tigers added another run in the inning to take a 5-0 lead.

Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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