Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Justin Verlander (35) pitches against the New York Yankees during the first inning at Comerica Park. (Rick Osentoski-US PRESSWIRE)
Detroit, MI (Sports Network) - Prince Fielder homered and Justin Verlander tossed eight solid innings, as the Detroit Tigers defeated the Kansas City Royals, 6-2, in the opener of a four-game series.
Andy Dirks knocked in two runs for the Tigers, who are one-half game behind the White Sox for first place in the AL Central. Chicago is playing the Indians on Monday.
(Chicago won their game vs. Cleveland, so the Tigers remain one game out of first place.)
Verlander (16-8) gave up two runs on nine hits while striking out eight for Detroit, which snapped a two-game skid. The right-hander improved to 12-7 in 23 career starts against Kansas City.
Alex Gordon hit a solo homer for the Royals, who have lost two straight since a four-game winning streak. Billy Butler went 3-for-4 with an RBI.
Luke Hochevar (8-15) allowed six runs -- five earned -- on 12 hits over 7 1/3 innings. He fell to 1-6 over his last 10 starts.
The Sports Network