Detroit Tigers Beat Royals 2-1, Verlander Gets 12th Win
The gametime temperature in Kansas City was a humid 95 degrees. The only thing hotter was Tiger ace Justin Verlander, who threw 7 2/3rds innings only giving up one unearned run. Verlander picks up his 12th win of the season before the All-Star break. The last Tiger pitcher to do that was Jack Morris in 1987.
Casper Wells scored both Tiger runs, reaching on a 4th inning double before scoring on a single from Brennan Boesch. Wells walked in the 6th, stole 2nd base and scored on a single by Magglio Ordonez.
Closer Jose Valverde picked up his 24th save in 24 attempts, and as usual, it was nerve wracking. Valverde gave up a leadoff double to Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer. Tying run in scoring position with nobody out. He strikes out the next hitter, then Hosmer was thrown out attempting to steal third base by Tiger catcher Alex Avila. Valverde got the last hitter to ground out to short and the Tigers win 2-1.
The victory puts the Tigers into first place by a half game over Cleveland, who lost again today to the Blue Jays of Toronto. Now it's four days off for the All-Star break, then the Tigers will open a three game series at home Friday night against their division rivals the Chicago White Sox. The second half of the season could get exciting. Let's hope it's a good kind of excitement.