Tigers 16, Royals 2

The SportsXchange

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Omar Infante drove in six runs on five hits, both career highs, and Andy Dirks went 5-for-5 with a walk as the Detroit Tigers blasted the Kansas City Royals 16-2 on Friday night.

The Tigers stroked a season-high 26 hits. Every Tigers starter had a hit and scored a run in the first five innings. The 16 runs and 26 hits were the most the Royals have allowed in a game this year.

Dirks also scored four runs, and Austin Jackson drove in four runs, matching his career high.

Anibal Sanchez was the beneficiary of the Tigers' offensive splurge, picking up his 13th victory. Sanchez gave up one run on seven hits in seven innings, while walking one and striking out five. He lowered his American League-best earned run average to 2.61.

Infante's ground ball single to left in the seventh scored Victor Martinez to cap off his big night. He was replaced by Herman Perez in the eighth inning.

The Royals scored a run in the ninth when David Lough doubled, went to third on a wild pitch and scored on Jarrod Dyson's sacrifice fly.

The Tigers sent 10 men to the plate in a five-run second inning. After James Shields retired the first batter, he walked Dirks and surrendered hits to six of the next seven batters.

Jackson's two-run double to right highlighted the inning. Ramon Santiago also drove in a run with a double, while Infante and Miguel Cabrera contributed run-producing singles.

Cabrera had missed four of the five previous games with an abdominal wall strain.

The Tigers threatened again in the third, which Dirks, Alex Avila and Infante opened with singles to load the bases. Shields got out of this jam by picking Dirks off third and striking out Santiago and Jackson.

The Tigers again sent 10 men to the plate in a five-run fourth and chased Shields. Jackson drove in two more runs with a single. Santiago walked with the bases loaded for an RBI, and Prince Fielder and Infante stroked RBI singles.

Shields, who was 6-1 in his previous eight starts, gave up 10 runs and 14 hits, both matching career highs, in 3 2/3 innings.

The Tigers stretched their lead to 13-1 in the fifth on Infante's two-out, three-run double off Luis Mendoza. Infante had four hits and five RBIs, both career highs, in the first five innings.

Billy Butler's first-inning two-out single -- his sixth straight hit -- scored Eric Hosmer with the first Kansas City run.

NOTES: C Salvador Perez was back in the Royals' lineup after leaving in the fifth inning Thursday with dizziness. Perez is wearing a new mask and will set up closer to the hitter, in hopes of avoiding more foul tips off the jaw. ... 2B Chris Getz, who suffered a possible concussion Tuesday, has not been cleared to play. ...Tigers OF Nick Castellanos, a 2010 first-round pick, will make his first big league start Saturday in left field. ...SS Jose Iglesias was not in the Detroit lineup Saturday after exiting in the fifth inning Wednesday with shin splints.
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