The Tigers struggled to get anything going against Chen, who pitched 7 IP of two run ball in the victory. Chen struck out four and gave up five hits, and didn’t walk a single batter. The Tigers’ only runs came on a two-run homer from a gimpy José Iglesias, who had missed the previous two games due to bilateral shin splints. After Chen came out, the Tigers were unable to mount any sort of rally against the Royals’ relievers until the ninth, when Prince Fielder hit a two-out double off closer Greg Holland. Victor Martinez grounded out to end the game, however.
The Cleveland Indians lost today, which means the Tigers maintain their 5.5 game lead in the division, while whittling their magic number down to 15. The Royals face the Indians in Cleveland in a big series, starting tomorrow.
The Tigers continue the nine-game roadtrip into Chicago to face the White Sox. Max Scherzer (19-2, 2.88 ERA) will face Chris Sale (10-12, 2.97 ERA), with gametime at 8:10pm.