Billy Butler hit a three-run homer in the eighth inning Tuesday night to lift the Kansas City Royals to a 6-4 win over the Boston Red Sox.
"The way things have been going we haven't come back late in games," said Butler. "Hopefully that gets us going. Obviously games like that build confidence, not only for me but for the team. Hopefully we can feed off that and have a winning homestand."
The Royals evened up their six-game homestand against the Yankees and Red Sox on Butler's blast off Matt Albers, who had just come into the game for Boston starter Daniel Bard (2-4).
Jarrod Dyson and Alex Gordon drew back-to-back walks before Butler launched a 1-1 pitch into the fountain behind left-center field.
"I can sit here and second guess if I just execute," said Albers, "but I didn't stay back over the rubber quite enough and the ball leaked over the plate and he's a good hitter."
Jose Mijares (2-1) gave up two singles but faced just seven batters in the seventh and eighth innings to earn the win. Royals starter Danny Duffy, who beat the Yankees his last time out, gave up four runs -- three earned -- in 4 1/3 innings.
The Red Sox had snapped a five-game losing streak in an 11-5 win in the opener of this three-game series on Monday, but let the Royals come back in this one. Bard, the former reliever making his fifth start, was charged with five runs on six hits in seven-plus innings.
Red Sox third baseman Will Middlebrooks labored as he pulled into second for a double in the second inning and left the game with an apparent leg injury.
The hit sparked a two-run rally. Middlebrooks later scored on Kelly Shoppach's single and Dustin Pedroia walked with the bases loaded to force in the second run.
The Royals took a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the inning, getting the first run on a balk by Bard that scored Eric Hosmer, who had led off the inning with a single. Another balk sent Mike Moustakas to third base and he scored on Chris Getz's single. Humberto Quintero added an RBI base hit with two outs.
The Red Sox moved ahead with a run in the fifth and sixth innings.
Mike Aviles hit a two-out double in the fourth and scored on Pedroia's single, while a double by Adrian Gonzalez and walk to Nick Punto chased Duffy from the game in the fifth. The go-ahead run scored when pinch-hitter Ryan Sweeney grounded into a force out off Kelvin Herrera.
After Butler put the Royals ahead, Jonathan Broxton threw a perfect ninth to pick up his sixth save.
The Red Sox had won eight of the previous 11 meetings...Punto replaced Middlebrooks at third base to start the second inning...Boston stranded eight runners.