Kansas City Royals beat punchless Detroit Tigers for third straight day

Apr 25, 2021; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Kansas City Royals second baseman Whit Merrifield (15) tags Detroit Tigers third baseman Niko Goodrum (28) out at second base during the fourth inning at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

Carlos Santana drove in two runs, Hunter Dozier homered and a quartet of pitchers combined for the shutout as the visiting Kansas City Royals silenced the punchless Detroit Tigers 4-0 on Sunday.

Royals starter Danny Duffy (3-1) threw five scoreless innings, scattering four hits with no walks and eight strikeouts. Kyle Zimmer pitched the sixth inning and Jake Brentz got the next six outs, collecting three strikeouts in the process. Wade Davis notched the final three outs.

Whit Merrifield had two hits, a run scored and an RBI for the Royals, who have won four straight and the first three games of the four-game series.

Detroit has lost nine of its last 10 games, scoring 13 runs in those defeats.

Tigers starter Michael Fulmer, who was pitching on three days’ rest, tossed three scoreless innings, allowing one hit and two walks while recording two strikeouts.

Detroit had three singles in the fourth inning but couldn’t push across a run. Niko Goodrum led off with a hit but Miguel Cabrera struck out. Goodrum then got thrown out trying to steal second. Jeimer Candelario and Wilson Ramos followed with singles but Duffy recovered to strike out Willi Castro.

Kansas City played small ball to take the lead in the fifth against Tarik Skubal (0-3). Michael A. Taylor singled, advanced to second on a Nicky Lopez sacrifice and stole third. Merrifield then hit a bloop that dropped in front of center fielder JaCoby Jones.

Dozier made it 2-0 in the sixth with a two-out, solo shot. He ripped a Skubal fastball over the left-field wall.

The Royals had runners in scoring position in the eighth on an error, an Andrew Benintendi single and a stolen base. But Alex Lange struck out Taylor to snuff out the threat.

Kansas City tacked on two more runs in the ninth. Lopez led off against Buck Farmer with a single and moved to second on a wild pitch. Merrifield ripped a single, moving Lopez to third, then stole second. Santana knocked both runners in with his single to center.

–Field Level Media