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Live Tigers blog: Lifeless Tigers fall to Royals

Geoff Robinson
The Detroit News
Tigers outfielder J.D. Martinez hits a double in the second inning against the Royals on Tuesday at Comerica Park.

FINAL: ROYALS 6, TIGERS 1

It was billed as a matchup of two of the best pitchers in the American League, and for a while, it played out that way. Justin Verlander just wasn't up to the task, however, giving up three solo home runs before loading the bases in eighth inning and being pulled from the game.

The Tigers' offense struggled with Danny Duffy all night. When they did get a man on base, he was the only one out there and was always stranded. The only run of the game came on a fifth inning home run from Jarrod Saltalmacchia to cut the deficit to 2-1.

In the ninth, Casey McGehee struck out swinging, Victor Martinez grounded out and J.D. Martinez flew out to right center.

Verlander's final line: 7 IP, 4 H, 5 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 6 K. 112 pitches

Duffy's final line: 7.2 IP, 3 H, ER, 2 BB, 5 K

Top 9th: Royals 6, Tigers 1

Kendrys Morales greeted Mark Lowe to the game by hitting the first pitch he saw deep to right field for the Royals' fourth home run of the night, stretching the K.C. lead to 6-1.

Lowe would settle in, getting the next three batters in order.

Salvador Perez flew out to center field, Alex Gordon lined out to second and Alcides Escobar popped out to first base to end the inning.

Bottom 8th: Royals 5, Tigers 1

Jarrod Saltalamacchia drew a leadoff walk and moved up to second on a wild pitch. The Tigers weren't able to do anything with the man in scoring position, however, as the next three hitters went down in order.

Dixon Machado grounded out to third and Tyler Collins struck out swinging as Danny Duffy was lifted from the game. Entering was former Tigers Joakim Soria, who struck out Ian Kinsler to end the frame.

Top 8th: Royals 5, Tigers 1

The Tigers fell asleep at the wheel in the eighth inning

Justin Verlander appeared to get a routine ground ball out to start the inning, but Jarrod Saltalmacchia couldn't corral a low throw from Casey McGehee and Alex Gordon was able to scoot down to second base and into scoring position. In the next at-bat, Alcides Escobar stroked a single to left field but was allowed to take second base as Justin Upton made a lazy throw to McGehee, who was in between third base and home plate. Escobar read the play and alertly took second base. Verlander then issued a walk to Raul Mondesi, loading the bases with nobody out, and that was the end of his night.

Bruce Rondon got the call and struck out Paulo Orlando. He appeared to get the out he needed by getting Cheslor Cuthbert to pop into shallow center field, but Ian Kinsler dropped the ball and allowed a run to score, though he did record the second out at third base. Lorenzo Cain followed with an RBI double down the left field line to stretch the K.C. lead to 5-1. The inning finally ended when Rondon was lifted and Kyle Ryan got Eric Hosmer to ground out.

Verlander's final line: 7 IP, 4 H, 5 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 6 K. 112 pitches

Bottom 7th: Royals 3, Tigers 1

Victor Martinez notched a leadoff single to left field but was thrown out at second when J.D. Martinez grounded into a fielder's choice. With one out, J.D. got a jump on a ball in the dirt and moved up to second base. Justin Upton flew out to center field for the second out of the inning, moving J.D. up to third. With two outs, James McCann took some big hacks before striking out to end the inning.

Danny Duffy has been great tonight. He's given up just three hits and walked one against a depleted Tigers lineup. He's thrown 88 pitches through the first seven innings.

Top 7th: Royals 3, Tigers 1

Well, at least Justin Verlander is consistent. The Royals hit their third solo home run of the night, this one coming on a moonshot from Eric Hosmer to center field, to give themselves a 3-1 cushion over the Tigers.

Verlander was able to get the next two hitters without issue, getting Kendrys Morales to pop out to second and Salvador Perez flew out to center field to end the frame.

Lorenzo Cain struck out looking to leadoff the inning.

Bottom 6th: Royals 2, Tigers 1

Ian Kinsler drew a one-out walk but was picked off at first base to stall any momentum for the Tigers. Casey McGehee flew out to right field to end the inning.

Tyler Collins struck out swinging to leadoff the inning.

The Tigers have just two hits off of Danny Duffy tonight, and that was the first walk he has issued. They can't have mental errors going forward if they want to win this game.

Top 6th: Royals 2, Tigers 1

Justin Verlander has given up two home runs tonight, but that's all he's given up after setting the Royals down in order for the fourth time in six innings.

Raul Mondesi struck out swinging at a ball up in the zone, Paulo Orlando flew out to center field and Cheslor Cuthbert did the same as Verlander cruised through the sixth.

It was a nice and easy, seven-pitch inning for the Tigers ace. With his team down just a run, he's still got a shot to walk away with a victory tonight. He's thrown 78 pitches through six.

Bottom 5th: Royals 2, Tigers 1

Aside from a double by J.D. Martinez, Danny Duffy hadn't shown any kinks in his armor as he cruised through the lineup over the first four innings. He appeared to be on his way to a perfect fifth inning, but Jarrod Saltalamacchia drilled a two-out home run to center field to give the Tigers their first run of the night.

Saltalamacchia's power usually shows up from the left side of the plate, but with Duffy being a lefty, he did his damage from the right side of the dish this time around. The estimated distance of the long ball was 430 feet.

Justin Upton flew out to right field and James McCann did the same to start the inning. Dixon Machado flew out to left field to end the frame.

Top 5th: Royals 2, Tigers 0

Alex Gordon got a hanging breaking ball from Justin Verlander and absolutely crushed it up and over the Belle Tire sign in right field, giving the Royals a 2-0 lead with his two-out blast.

Kendrys Morales flew out to center field and Salvador Perez struck out swinging at a ball in the dirt to start the inning.

Alcides Escobar grounded out to shortstop to end the frame.

Bottom 4th: Royals 1, Tigers 0

Danny Duffy just continues to retire Tiger after Tigers, setting the home team down in order for the third time in four innings tonight.

Casey McGehee grounded out to second, Victor Martinez grounded out to shortstop and J.D. Martinez flew out to right field to end the inning.

Duffy is set to go deep into tonight's game as he's thrown just 41 pitches over the first four frames.

Top 4th: Royals 1, Tigers 0

Justin Verlander didn't let a little blip on the radar affect his night, setting the Royals down in order for the third time in four innings.

Cheslor Cuthbert popped out to second, Lorenzo Cain did the same and Eric Hosmer grounded out to shortstop.

The Mondesi home run was the only mistake for Verlander thus far. He's retired 12 out of the 13 he's faced. He needs his offense to scrape together some runs off of Danny Duffy.

Bottom 3rd: Royals 1, Tigers 0

Dixon Machado struck out swinging, Tyler Collins popped out to second and Ian Kinsler flew out to center field to end the inning.

Danny Duffy is every bit on his game as Justin Verlander, and then some. The K.C. star has given up just one hit and thrown just 36 pitches through three innings.

Top 3rd: Royals 1, Tigers 0

Justin Verlander was on cruise control and it seemed as though he could be untouchable tonight. Not so fast: Raul Mondesi turned on a fastball inside and drilled it just inside the foul pole in right field for his first home run of the season to give the Royals a 1-0 lead.

Alex Gordon flew out to center field and Alcides Escobar did the same to start the inning.

Paulo Orlando struck out swinging to end the frame.

Bottom 2nd: Tigers 0, Royals 0

J.D. Martinez led things off with a double to left field but the Tigers were unable to get him home.

Justin Upton struck out, James McCann flew out to center field and Jarrod Saltalamacchia flew out to right field to end the inning.

Top 2nd: Tigers 0, Royals 0

Justin Verlander is in control early on, setting the Royals down in order for the second consecutive inning.

Eric Hosmer grounded out to second base, Kendrys Morales struck out swinging and Salvador Perez grounded out to third to end the inning.

Verlander has thrown just 25 pitches through the first two frames and looks very much in control on the mound.

Bottom 1st: Tigers 0, Royals 0

Ian Kinsler flew out to left field, Casey McGehee was robbed by Paulo Orlando in right center and Victor Martinez flew out to center field as the Tigers went down in order in the first inning.

Danny Duffy is going to be a challenge on the mound tonight. The shorthanded Tigers are going to have to stay patient at the plate.

Top 1st: Tigers 0, Royals 0

Justin Verlander struck out Paulo Orlando looking, got Cheslor Cuthbert to ground out to third and Lorenzo Cain to pop out to second to end the inning.

That was an easy, breezy first inning for the Tigers ace. He threw just 10 pitches in the opening frame.

TIGERS LINEUP

1. Ian Kinsler, 2B

2. Casey McGehee, 3B

3. Victor Martinez, DH

4. J.D. Martinez, RF

5. Justin Upton, LF

6. James McCann, C

7. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, 1B

8. Dixon Machado, SS

9. Tyler Collins, CF

Justin Verlander, P

ROYALS LINEUP

1. Paulo Orlando, CF

2. Cheslor Cuthbert, 3B

3. Lorenzo Cain, RF

4. Eric Hosmer, 1B

5. Kendrys Morales, DH

6. Salvador Perez, C

7. Alex Gordon, LF

8. Alcides Escobar, SS

9. Raul Mondesi, 2B

Danny Duffy, P

TIGERS VS. ROYALS

When: Tuesday, 7:10 p.m.

Where: Comerica Park, Detroit

Pitching matchup: RHP Justin Verlander (12-6, 3.42) vs. LHP Danny Duffy (9-1, 2.82)

Local TV: Fox Sports Detroit

National TV: None

Internet streaming: MLB.TV (blacked out in Detroit market)

Local radio: 97.1 FM

Satellite radio: SIRI 218