DETROIT — This wasn’t the road trip the Kansas City Royals were expecting.
They limp into the All-Star Break 3-7 in their travels through Minnesota, Toronto and Detroit, after Sunday’s 7-1 loss to the Tigers.
“The trip was disappointing. Coming into the thing you’re four games out and four games under (actually five-and-a-half games out and five games under. 500),” said Royals’ manager Ned Yost. “. Definitely not the way we figure it would be.”
Kansas City was bludgeoned by Detroit’s power display and dominated by Max Scherzer (8-5).
Delmon Young homered for the fourth consecutive game, Prince Fielder hit a three-run shot and Jhonny Peralta homered and drove in three runs, while Scherzer allowed a run and five hits over seven innings, walking one and striking out seven.
“He was pretty good. He was 96, good run on his fastball,” Yost said about Scherzer. “He was good. It’s the best we’ve seen him.”
Meanwhile, Royals’ starter Everett Teaford (1-2) took the loss. He allowed five runs on seven hits in 4 1/3 innings. He walked a batter and struck out five.
“Left a fastball up to Peralta, he’s a good high ball hitter,” Teaford said. “To Delmon, I overthrew a change-up. Didn’t get it down and away. He’s a good hitter.”
Salvador Perez homered for Kansas City’s only run.
Peralta’s two-out, two-run homer in the second inning gave Detroit a 2-0 lead. His towering drive down the left-field line and into the stands came on Teaford’s 0-1 pitch and followed Brennan Boesch’s single
It was Peralta’s fifth home run.
Perez cut the lead in half for Kansas City with his fourth homer, leading off the third. A right-handed batter, Perez lined Scherzer’s 1-0 pitch over the right-field fence and into the stands.
Young’s 10th home run, leading off the fourth made it 3-1. He lined Teaford’s 2-2 pitch into the shrubbery beyond the right-centerfield fence, an estimated 433 feet away.
Kansas City threatened with runners on second and third with two out in the fifth on a lead-off single by Jeff Francoeur and Alex Gordon’s two-out double that sent Francoueur to third. But Scherzer got Alcides Escobar swinging to end the inning.
“That’s the best I’ve seen him, Scherzer,” Francoeur said. ” . He threw well. He pounded fastball, change-up, slider.”
Fielder’s three-run homer in the fifth broke the game open, giving Detroit a 6-1 lead.
He greeted reliever Tim Collins by launching his first pitch halfway up the right-field stands, an estimated 417 feet away. It also scored Austin Jackson and Quintin Berry, who led off the inning with singles.
Both Teaford and Collins are lefthanders. Yost explained why he brought in Collins to face the lefty-swinging Fielder.
“I though Timmy had more to get him with breaking balls and curves. He’s a different kind of lefty. Good change-up, good curve,” Yost said. “Just never got to it because he threw a fastball right down the middle.”
It was the decisive blow.
“That was the dagger, you know. 3-1, you’re still in it. 6-1 …” said Royals right fielder Jeff Francoeur.
It was the 15th homer for Fielder – his third in four games – who was voted the A.L. starter at first base by the fans for Tuesday night’s All-Star game in Kansas City. He will also participate in Monday night’s Home Run Derby. Fielder is batting .299 and has 63 RBIs.
“The amount of power he has, it’s awesome. You got to see it today.,” Scherzer said. “A good reliever who’s had a pretty good year so far and absolutely took his fastball deep. That’s just the type of talent he has and why he makes our team great.”
Peralta doubled in a run in the eighth.
NOTES: Also representing Detroit in the All-Star Game will be third baseman Miguel Cabrera (.324, 18 home runs and 71 RBIs) and Justin Verlander (9-5, 2.58) . Designated hitter Billy Butler ( .290, 16 HR, 52 RBIs) will be the Royals’ only representative in Tuesday night’s game at Kansas City’s Kauffman Stadium. . Jackson (1-for-5) extended his hitting streak to a career high 15 games (26-for-65, .400).
– Associated Press –