Hoping to find better fortune following Thursday night’s disappointing loss in walk-off fashion, the Royals turned to 24-year-old Brad Keller to even the series back up. Unable to produce anything off Edwin Jackson, who came in with a 11.12 ERA. Kansas City was upended in Detroit, 5-2.
Similar to the night before, the Royals didn’t waste anytime in knocking a Tigers’ pitcher for some early runs. Leading off the game, Whit Merrifield drove one off the wall in centerfield and circled the bases after Victor Reyes played the bounce poorly.
Taking a 1-0 lead into the bottom half, Keller toed the slab. After recording the first out, his command suddenly left him. Missing with eight straight balls, the right-hander walked two consecutive hitters. Two batters later, Dawel Lugo punched a two-out single into right center, giving Detroit the lead, 2-1.
Failing to make the Tigers’ journeyman starter sweat, Kansas City struggled to put any men in scoring position. Scoreless since the first on both sides, Detroit was able to tack on some insurance in the fifth. Following a Niko Goodrum triple to kick things off, Miguel Cabrera laced a single to left field to extend the advantage. With a larger cushion, Jackson continued to sit down Royals’ hitters quickly.
In the ensuing inning, the Tigers’ added one more on a solo home run by Jake Rogers and a second on a wild pitch from Keller. Allowing five runs in all on ten hits and six walks, the righty’s night was finished. Jackson managed to tally one out in the seventh but was pulled after 6 1⁄3 innings with just one earned run on his line.
Tim Hill worked two scoreless frames and Jorge Soler belted his 32nd home run on the season in the ninth, but neither was enough for Kansas City to surmount a comeback. Dropping their 76th game in 2019, the Royals will try and salvage the remaining two games on the road trip. On Saturday, Mike Montgomery squares off with Spencer Turnbull for game three of the series. First pitch is at 5:10 CT.