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Royals 8, Tigers 3

The SportsXchange

DETROIT -- Late-game insertion George Kottaras drew a tie-breaking, bases-loaded walk in the top of the 10th inning, and an Alex Gordon grand slam iced the Kansas City Royals' 8-3 win over the Detroit Tigers on Thursday.

With one out, Lorenzo Cain doubled and Mike Moustakas walked. Both runners advanced on a wild pitch, prompting an intentional walk to Jeff Francoeur to set up a force at any base.

Kottaras, who entered the game an inning earlier, drew a five-pitch from losing lefty Phil Coke (0-3) to put the Royals ahead. One out later, Gordon smashed a slam off reliever Darin Downs.

Tim Collins (1-0) struck out two in a perfect ninth to pick up the victory, while Greg Holland worked the 10th, and allowed the Royals to split a rain-abbreviated two-game series.

Tigers Rookie Bruce Rondon, whose failure to win the closer's job in the spring led to the re-signing of Jose Valverde, made his Major League debut in the eighth inning and gave up a game-tying sacrifice fly to Lorenzo Cain.

Billy Butler singled to open the inning. Pinch runner Jarrod Dyson stole second, and advanced to third on a groundout to set up the sac fly.

Justin Verlander was denied his third victory. The righty was forced out after the seventh inning due to cracked skin on his right thumb. He had thrown 96 pitches.

Detroit took a 3-2 lead in the fifth when Torii Hunter's one-out single drove in Omar Infante from second base.

Kansas City catcher Salvador Perez's sacrifice fly in the fourth scored an unearned run to give Kansas City a 2-1 lead, but Detroit tied it in the bottom of the inning on a sacrifice fly to center by Jhonny Peralta. Two wild pitches by Shields after issuing a leadoff walk to Prince Fielder set up the one-out sac fly.

Detroit center fielder Austin Jackson broke an 0-for-23 skid in the first with a leadoff double. Miguel Cabrera scored him with a single to left.

Notes: Two Kansas City pitchers recovering from Tommy John surgery, LHP Danny Duffy and RHP Felipe Paulino, are making progress in their comebacks. Duffy recently pitched to hitters in a game, while Paulino threw live batting practice. Duffy was operated on June 13 while Paulino underwent surgery last July 3. ... RF Avisail Garcia, out since late Spring Training with a right heel contusion, has been assigned to high Single-A Lakeland and will begin a rehab assignment Thursday night. ... RF Jeff Francoeur's outfield assist Wednesday night was his second of the season, and the 118th of his career. It's the highest total in the Majors since Francoeur broke in during the 2005 season with the Atlanta Braves. ... LHP Duane Below, designated for assignment by Detroit on Wednesday, was claimed off waivers Thursday by the Miami Marlins and assigned to their Triple-A farm club in New Orleans.
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