Roy­als win again

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - SPORTS -

Kansas City sec­ond base­man Whit Mer­ri­field home­red on the game’s first pitch, and the Roy­als never looked back en route to their sev­enth straight vic­tory. Danny Duffy lasted more than six in­nings for the Roy­als, who are look­ing to con­tend for the di­vi­sion crown.

DETROIT — Whit Mer­ri­field home­red on the first pitch of the game and the Kansas City Roy­als led the rest of the way, beat­ing the Detroit Tigers 3-1 on Tues­day night for their sev­enth con­sec­u­tive vic­tory.

Danny Duffy (7-6) pitched into the sev­enth in­ning for the Roy­als, who added two runs in the fourth to keep the pres­sure on in the AL Cen­tral race. Kansas City came into the night 1½ games be­hind first-place Cleve­land.

Mer­ri­field home­red to left-cen­ter off Michael Ful­mer (10-8) to open the scor­ing. Ful­mer struck out the next four hit­ters he faced, and the All-Star right-han­der ended up al­low­ing three runs and eight hits in eight sharp in­nings. He struck out six with­out a walk.

Duffy al­lowed a run and six hits in 61/ in­nings. Three re­liev­ers fin­ished, 3 with Kelvin Her­rera pitch­ing a per­fect ninth for his 21st save in 24 chances.

The Roy­als scored eight runs — five earned — off Ful­mer in his pre­vi­ous start last week. He was much bet­ter this time around, but Kansas City put to­gether a cru­cial rally in the fourth. Eric Hos­mer made it 2-0 with an RBI sin­gle, and Mike Mous­takas added a sac­ri­fice fly.

Detroit's Mikie Mah­took hit a triple in the bot­tom of the fourth and scored on James McCann's sin­gle. The Tigers loaded the bases in the sev­enth, but Ni­cholas Castellanos — mired in a 0-for-18 slump — grounded into a force­out against re­liever Peter Moy­lan, end­ing the threat.

Joakim So­ria al­lowed sin­gles to the first two Detroit hit­ters in the eighth, but the Tigers blun­dered their way out of that in­ning. With men on first and third and one out, Vic­tor Martinez's line drive to deep right was caught, and Mah­took was dou­bled off first.

NA­TIONAL LEAGUE

CAR­DI­NALS 3, ROCK­IES 2 Har­ri­son Bader dou­bled lead­ing off the ninth in­ning for his first ma­jor league hit and slid across the plate to score the win­ning run of his de­but on Jedd Gy­orko’s short sac­ri­fice fly, lift­ing the St. Louis Car­di­nals over the Colorado Rock­ies. The 23-year-old, taken on the third round of the 2015 am­a­teur draft, was brought up be­fore the game when Dex­ter Fowler was placed on the dis­abled list with a strained left wrist.

IN­TER­LEAGUE

ASTROS 5, PHILLIES 0 Derek Fisher drove in two runs just hours af­ter ar­riv­ing in Philadelphia and Char­lie Mor­ton (8-4) gave up three hits in seven in­nings and struck out nine. Jose Al­tuve ex­tended his hit­ting streak to 17 straight games with a sixth-in­ning dou­ble to help the AL West-lead­ing Astros im­prove to an Amer­i­can League-best 6733. Hous­ton is 9-0 in in­ter­league play.

RANGERS 10, MAR­LINS 4 Joey Gallo home­red twice, Mike Napoli and Rougned Odor also went deep, and the Texas Rangers slugged past the Mi­ami Mar­lins. When Gallo led off the third in­ning with a tow­er­ing blast into the sec­ond deck of seats, Mar­lins right fielder and MLB home run co-leader Gian­carlo Stan­ton never even moved. That broke a 1-all tie and put the Rangers ahead to stay.

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