Detroit, MI – Austin Jackson had four hits, including a two- run double, and Rick Porcello snapped a two-start losing streak with eight good innings, leading the Detroit Tigers to a 9-3 win over the Kansas City Royals on Tuesday.
Detroit's win started a shortened two-game series. The scheduled opener was postponed on Monday because of rain and will be made up Sept. 24.
Porcello (2-2) allowed three runs on seven hits, striking out three without a walk. He had given up 14 runs in 7 2/3 innings over his previous two starts.
Jackson singled and scored in a five-run first inning and highlighted a three- run rally in the third with his double. He also saved a home run in the ninth inning by reaching over to catch Jeff Francoeur's hit, which had bounced off the top of the wall in left-center field.
Tigers manager Jim Leyland picked up his 1,600th career win, passing Tommy Lasorda for 17th place all-time.
"We got some really nice hitting, but to me tonight the key was pitching and defense," said Leyland. "We looked good. Tonight we looked like a good club."
Royals starter Luke Hochevar (2-2) gave up nine runs in just four innings -- including five with no outs in the first -- to take the loss. He allowed 12 hits and three walks and struck out two.
Porcello hit 95 mph on his fastball three times in the top of the first and the Tigers spotted him a 5-0 lead in the bottom of the inning, scoring all five runs with no outs.
Back-to-back singles by Jackson and Brennan Boesch leading off the inning were followed by Miguel Cabrera's RBI double inside the right field line.
Two runs came home on first baseman Eric Hosmer's errant throw home on Prince Fielder's ground ball while the other two scored after singles by Andy Dirks and Jhonny Peralta.
"That's what happens when you don't execute. Even when I did execute, they squared them up," said Hochevar. "I was just poor all around. Right out of the gate I put us in a 5-0 hole and that's tough to climb out of."
Hochevar remained in the game and gave up three more runs in the third on an RBI single by Don Kelly and a two-run double by Jackson, making it 8-0 Detroit.
Dirks hurt his hamstring legging out a one-out double in the fourth -- Alex Gordon lost the fly ball in left and let it drop -- and was replaced pinch- runner Brad Eldred, who scored on Peralta's single to make it 9-0. Ramon Santiago followed with a base hit, but Peralta was thrown out at third to end the inning.
The Tigers said Dirks left the game with hamstring tightness and is day-to- day.
Francoeur scored KC's first run in the fifth inning after leading off with a single, going to third on Yuniesky Betancourt's double and coming home on Humberto Quintero's ground out.
Jarrod Dyson hit a leadoff single in the sixth and scored on Gordon's double to get the Royals within 9-2. Dyson hit a one-out triple in the eighth and came across on Gordon's ground out for KC's third run.
Phil Coke worked around Francoeur's ground-rule double off the top of the wall in the ninth to finish off the win for Detroit.
The Tigers swept a three-game series in Kansas City last month and have won five in a row against the Royals...Hochevar's ERA ballooned from 4.98 to 7.36...Detroit had 14 hits, including two apiece from Cabrera, Dirks and Peralta.