The Detroit Tigers weren’t going to roll over in their series finale against the league and division leading foes, the Kansas City Royals. Ian Kinsler led the Tigers with a walk off home run in the bottom of the ninth hitting a two run homer and beating the Royals 8-6. 39,000 cheered a great afternoon Thursday game that continues to provide this Tiger team hope.
Victor Martinez troubled the Royals with two home runs – a three run blast in the bottom of the third and then a two run homer in the bottom of the fifth.
The Tigers faced the trash talking Yordano Ventura who has been slinging insults and tweets better than pitches this year. Ventura lasted only five innings giving up six earned runs (five of them to Victor Martinez) and eight hits.
Anibal Sanchez continued his slump and reversion back to early season form. Sanchez lasted only six innings and pitched his way out of a couple of jams but still allowed four earned runs on five hits.
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The Royals took an early 1-0 lead in first off a bases loaded walk from Sanchez. They added to their lead to make it 3-0 in the bottom of the second and it seemed like the game was going to get out of hand quickly for the Tigers. Until, that is, Victor Martinez decided to single handily take over the game. Martinez who had been slumping of recently broke out big time with a 2-4 day with the two home runs and five RBI.
The Tigers took a 6-3 lead in the bottom of the fifth off the second Martinez home run. But Kansas City wasn’t done for the day either. Drew Butera homered in the top of the seventh making it 6-4 and then Kendrys Morales doubled in both Alcides Escobar and Eric Hosmer to make it 6-6.
The teams faced some squirrel drama in the bottom of the eighth when Rajai Davis made his way to third after pinch running for Alex Avila who singled. Davis stole second and then advanced to third on a throwing error by Butera. And oh yeah, after two delays the squirrel was a moot point when Anthony Goes stranded Davis(and the squirrel) on third by striking out.
The Tigers took the series from the Royals 2-1 making it their first series win in a month. The last series victor was July 6-8 against Seattle.
And for Ventura…some advice? Don’t start a Twitter war with Victor Martinez. Have you seen the stink eye he can give like he did against Grant Balfour?