DETROIT – Matt Boyd shut down the first-place Kansas City Royals in his Tigers debut Wednesday, allowing just one run on seven hits over seven innings. Boyd joins Daniel Norris, who pitched 7 1/3 one-run innings against Baltimore Sunday, as winners of their first games in Detroit after coming over in the David Price trade with Toronto.
Offense was at a premium Wednesday night at Comerica Park, with Boyd squaring off against new Royals ace Johnny Cueto. Cueto, who made his second start for the Royals after being traded from Cincinnati, held the Tigers to two earned runs on five hits and two walks over seven innings pitched.
The Tigers used a pair of triples to scratch across their only two runs against Cueto. Anthony Gose tripled home Tyler Collins with a drive to deep center field in the 3rd inning to open the scoring. Ian Kinsler led off the 4th with a triple and scored on Victor Martinez's ensuing groundout to first.
The Royals' only run also came via the triple: A Kendrys Morales three-bagger that scored Eric Hosmer in the top of the 4th.
Boyd featured a low-90s fastball up in the zone, inducing a horde of weak fly balls off the Royals' bats. He scattered seven hits, only two of which went for extra bases, and threw 72 of his 106 pitches for strikes.
Bruce Rondon held the lead in the 8th, pitching around a leadoff single with a pair of strikeouts and a fly out. Blaine Hardy started the 9th and retired the only two batters he faced and Alex Wilson came on to get one out for his second save of the season.
With the win, the Tigers evened up the series and earned a chance to beat Kansas City in a series for the first time this season in the rubber match Thursday afternoon. Anibal Sanchez will get the start for Detroit against Yordano Ventura.