KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Detroit Tigers manager Brad Ausmus was feeling ill even before Friday nights game against Kansas City, so he told bench coach Gene Lamont in the second inning that he was heading upstairs. He missed having a front-row seat to watch his pitching staffs magic act. Just like Houdini making his greatest escapes, Anibal Sanchez and the Tigers bullpen wiggled out of jams in every inning. Ian Kinsler and Miguel Cabrera drove in a run apiece, and that was just enough to give the AL Central-leading Tigers a 2-1 victory over the second-place Royals. "We really had to fight for this one," Tigers catch Bryan Holaday said. Sanchez (6-3) scattered eight hits without a walk over seven innings, Joba Chamberlain got out of a tense eighth, and Joe Nathan worked around a single and a walk in the ninth for his 19th save -- and give Detroit its fifth straight win over the Royals at Kauffman Stadium this season. Nathan got Nori Aoki to ground out on a full-count pitch to end the game. "Obviously we have to play them a lot more," Chamberlain said. "We just have to keep grinding." Salvador Perez drove in the only run for the Royals, who squandered a solid start by Danny Duffy (5-9). He gave up both runs, only one earned, while losing for the fourth time in five starts. "Up against a guy like Sanchez," he said, "you cant make any mistakes." The Royals appeared to be 90 feet from tying it with no outs in the eighth, when Aoki swiped second base and went to third when the throw from Holaday squirted into centre field. While that was going on, though, plate umpire Chad Fairchild was calling batter interference on Lorenzo Cain for stepping into the way of the throw to second. Cain was out and Aoki was forced to make the long, slow trot back to first base. He wound up getting stranded by Chamberlain. "That was a big play," said Lamont, himself a former catcher. "Chad made the right call. Im sure the Royals fans dont think so, but he did make the right call." After the Tigers opened the series with a 16-4 blowout Thursday night, Sanchez and Duffy waged an entertaining pitchers duel. And just like when they met in June, Sanchez was one run better. Duffy surrendered a leadoff double to Austin Jackson and an RBI single to Kinsler in the first inning, and then gave up another run in the third when Cabrera hit a lazy sacrifice fly. Duffy wound up allowing five hits while striking out six without a walk. He departed after hitting the Tigers Nick Castellanos leading off the seventh inning, but Kelvin Herrera -- who hit the first batter he faced -- managed to wiggle out of the jam without any more damage. Meanwhile, Sanchez was churning through the Royals lineup. They scored their only run in the first inning when Eric Hosmer stretched a single into a double and Perez followed with a base hit. Sanchez struck out Billy Butler to end the inning, and then kept Kansas City at bay over the next six -- though none of them was clean. Sanchez worked around a single in the second, a double in the third, a leadoff single in the fourth, and singles in the fifth and sixth innings without another run. His tensest moment came in the seventh, when Mike Moustakas doubled off the wall in centre field, missing a tying homer by a couple of feet. The Royals advanced Moustakas to third with a groundout, but Sanchez induced two more groundouts -- one a magnificent spinning stab by shortstop Eugenio Suarez -- to quietly end the threat. "Same thing we see every time. He was unreal," Moustakas said. "Hes so good at commanding his pitches and mixing speeds with different pitches and different counts. Hes a tough at-bat any time. He commands both sides of the plate with all of his pitches, and he adds and subtracts his fastball. He does whatever he wants." NOTES: Sanchez is 5-2 with a 1.08 ERA in his career against the Royals. ... Tigers DH Victor Martinez (strained left side) missed his fifth straight game. Kinsler replaced him on the AL All-Star roster Friday. ... The Royals were 1 for 12 with runners in scoring position. ... The Royals activated Aoki (strained left groin) from the DL and optioned INF Christian Colon to Triple-A Omaha before the game. ... Tigers RHP Rick Porcello faces Royals RHP James Shields on Saturday. Pat Sims Jersey
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. "We cannot stay the same way the whole season long," said Reyes. "This is not acceptable. Something needs to change because were a better team than what were showing right now. Its a long season and we just need to continue to push." Its been a frustrating week for the ballclub. MINNEAPOLIS -- The Minnesota Twins had the right formula for successfully playing through the cold: a guy named Kyle Gibson. Unfazed by the subfreezing temperature at first pitch, Gibson pitched a career-high eight scoreless innings for the Twins in a 7-0 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on Thursday that opened a day-night doubleheader. Gibson (3-0) took the mound for the coldest start for an outdoor game in Twins history, 31 degrees, and breezed through a Blue Jays lineup that totalled 20 runs in the previous two games. He walked one, struck out four and scattered four singles. All he was missing was the ninth. He lobbied for 10 more pitches, but 105 were plenty for the Twins. "This early in the season were not going to mess with that kids arm. But that was a great performance," manager Ron Gardenhire said. Gibson had a rough rookie year in 2013, but the 2009 first-round amateur draft pick has been the early stalwart of the rotation that stumbled through the first two turns. He lowered his ERA to 0.93. "Especially toward the end, I was thinking about going nine innings. I wasnt thinking about the cold," said Gibson, recalling a couple of snow-covered games in college at Missouri. His parents travelled from Indiana to watch him play Thursday, and the 6-foot-6 right-hander was throwing first-pitch strike after first-pitch strike. "I know theres some Twins fans that dont like the pitch to contact, but if my sinkers sinking then Im doing myself a disservice by throwing ball one," Gibson said. Josmil Pinto highlighted a five-run fifth inning against R.A. Dickey (1-3) with a two-run double, missing a grand slam by a few inches. Trevor Plouffe also had two RBIs. But the story of the game was Gibson. "His fastball was sneaky and jumping on you pretty good," Toronto manager John Gibbons said. Gibson went 2-4 with a 5.63 ERA in 10 starts last season but has earned his spot back. "He was confident, really confident, and he showed that from day one of spring trainingg.dddddddddddd It wasnt like he was out there on a mission. He was just going his thing," Gardenhire said after the Twins beat the Blue Jays for just the fifth time in their last 22 meetings. After wintry weather forced postponement of Wednesdays game, workers scrambled all morning to melt snow and ice from the seating areas, and the grounds crew dried the warning track. The Twins even sent out a company-wide memo asking for help. Slush still sat along the edges of the plaza behind right field, and the highest seating level was closed off because it wasnt cleared in time, giving those customers an unexpected upgrade. The announced paid attendance was 20,507, but the actual number of people present was probably half of that at most. The previous lowest first-pitch temperature the Twins played in was 32 degrees on May 2, 1967, at Metropolitan Stadium. Their home was the covered, climate-controlled Metrodome from 1982-09. Dickeys knuckleball was moving all over the place. Needing 112 pitches to get 13 outs, Dickey didnt finish the fifth inning when the Twins batted around. His ERA rose to 6.26, after he allowed seven hits, five walks and five runs while striking out four. Jason Kubel, Kurt Suzuki and Chris Colabello also drove in runs for the Twins. "They did a good job of laying off really good pitches. I thought I got squeezed a couple of pitches, but outside of that it was one of those days where you werent putting the whole game together," Dickey said, adding: "Im traditionally a slow starter so hopefully I can get on track next time." NOTES: The last Twins pitcher to win each of his first three starts as a member of the opening day rotation was Livan Hernandez in 2008. ... Dickey is 1-3 with a 6.58 ERA in six career starts against the Twins. ... The Twins recalled former Yankees SS Eduardo Nunez, acquired via trade last week, from Triple-A Rochester to play 3B for the second game as the 26th man. The Blue Jays added OF Anthony Gose from Triple-A Buffalo. Cheap Jerseys Free Shipping China Jerseys Wholesale Authentic Jerseys Cheap Jerseys Wholesale Wholesale Jerseys China Stitched Jerseys NFL Jerseys China
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