The Kansas City Royals struck early and often with six runs in the first four innings off of Anibal Sanchez (2-4) to cruise past the Detroit Tigers 6-2.
Royals’ starter Jeremy Guthrie (3-1) surrendered eight hits in his 7.1 innings of work but only allowed two runs while striking out three.
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Last Sunday when Sanchez squared off against Guthrie it took the Royals six innings to record their first hit of the game. It took them one pitch Saturday afternoon. Alcides Escobar launched it into the left field seats for a 1-0 lead.
Kansas City went right back to work in the top of the second. Jarrod Dyson led off with a double to left-center. Drew Butera sacrificed him to third where he scored on a sharp single by Escobar to make the score 3-0.
On the following play, an error on Cain’s catchable fly ball by right fielder J.D. Martinez put runners on the corners and it appeared the Royals were about to break the game wide open when the Tigers caught a break.
Cain had second base stolen but overslid the bag. Shortstop Andrew Romine alertly kept the tag on to get the second out of the inning. That play saved a run when Hosmer singled to make the score 4-0.
The Tigers touched Guthrie for a run in the second when Yoenis Cespedes singled to left with one out. J.D. Martinez followed with a single to send Cespedes to third where he scored on a sacrifice fly by Nick Castellanos.
Sanchez gave that run back in the Royals’ third when he allowed the third straight leadoff man to reach base by hitting Alex Gordon in the leg. With the bases loaded and one out Butera grounded out, scoring Gordon and making the score 5-1.
The only other threat the Tigers could mount came in their half of the fourth when, with one out Cespedes doubled and J.D. Martinez walked before Guthrie cracked down. He pounded the outside corner to get Castellanos looking and James McCann swinging to slam the door.
Shane Greene (3-2) will attempt to get his season back on track and pitch the Tigers back into first place when he takes the mound against the Royals Sunday night in the rubber game of the series.