KANSAS CITY, Mo.-- Ervin Santana and two Kansas City relievers combined on a two-hitter as the Royals shut out the Detroit Tigers 1-0 on Friday night.
Santana gave up two singles and walked one in 7 1/3 innings to pick up the victory.
Kelvin Herrera, who was recalled Thursday from Class AAA Omaha, got the final two outs in the eighth after Santana walked Jhonny Peralta.
All-Star reliever Greg Holland worked a spotless ninth to earn his 23rd save in 25 chances.
Royals center fielder Lorenzo Cain made three excellent catches - two at the wall and one on the warning track - to preserve the victory.
The Royals snapped a five-game losing streak.
Kansas City scored the game's only run in the first. Alex Gordon led off with a smash single that second baseman Ramon Santiago got a glove on but could not stop. Gordon stole second with one out and scored on Billy Butler's ground ball single up the middle.
After Tigers' starter Anibal Sanchez walked All-Star catcher Salvador Perez, he coaxed Mike Moustakas to roll into an inning-ending double play.
Sanchez, who was making his third start since coming off the disabled list with a right shoulder strained, pitched out of danger in the second. Lorenzo Cain began the inning with a single and rookie David Lough bunted him to second. Cain went to third on an Alcides Escobar ground out. Chris Getz walked and stole second, but Sanchez retired Gordon on a grounder to Prince Fielder to end the threat.
Santana, who gave up eight runs on 10 hits and three walks in his previous start against the Yankees, retired the first 10 batters before Torii Hunter singled in the fourth.
The only other hit Santana allowed was Alex Dirks' fifth-inning two-out single. Dirks, however, was thrown out by Perez trying to steal second.
Notes: Missouri RB Henry Josey, who missed last season with a knee injury, threw out the ceremonial first pitch. Royals' RHP Aaron Crow, who went 13-0 with a 2.35 ERA as a Missouri junior, was Josey's catcher. ... Tigers IF Omar Infante, who is on the disabled list with a left ankle sprain, will join the team Saturday for evaluation. He has been working out at the Tigers' complex in Lakeland, Fla. ... Butler is a career .421 hitter against Tigers RHP Justin Verlander, who starts Saturday.