Recap: Detroit vs. Kansas City

06/19/2014 3:45 PM

06/19/2014 6:49 PM

Detroit, MI ( - J.D. Martinez hit the go-ahead solo home run in the fourth inning, and Detroit held on to post a 2-1 victory over the Royals, snapping their 10-game win streak in Thursday's finale of a four-game series.

Miguel Cabrera drove in the other run for the Tigers, who avoided a sweep and moved a half-game back of their foes for first place in the AL Central.

"It's a step," Detroit manager Brad Ausmus said of his club, which has gone just 6-11 in June. "It's a baby step, but in the right direction."

Anibal Sanchez (4-2) scattered five hits and one run over seven strong innings. Joba Chamberlain tossed a scoreless eighth and Joe Nathan recorded his 14th save by striking out the side in the ninth.

Billy Butler doubled twice and knocked in the lone run for the Royals, who hadn't tasted defeat since June 6 at home against the Yankees.

Danny Duffy (4-6) also worked seven innings, but took the loss despite letting up just two runs on three hits with five strikeouts.

Behind 1-0 after 3 1/2 innings, the hosts moved ahead to stay in the fourth. Austin Jackson singled and scored when Cabrera followed with double. Victor Martinez lined into a double play, then a blast from J.D. Martinez gave the Tigers a 2-1 edge.

Sanchez stranded runners on second and third in the fifth by grounding out Norichika Aoki, then was unscathed in the sixth after Butler's two-out double. He exited after turning aside the Royals in the seventh.

Aoki singled against Chamberlain to start the eighth but was erased when Eric Hosmer grounded into a double play. Nathan fanned Butler, Salvador Perez and Lorenzo Cain to preserve the one-run margin.

"That looked like the Joe Nathan I've faced for years," Butler said. "The one with a few hundred saves and all those All-Star games."

Things looked brighter for the visitors early on, as Aoki doubled to start the game and then came in on a two-out double from Butler.

Game Notes

Join the Discussion

Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Terms of Service