Brady Singer and the Royals bullpen danced in and out of trouble all afternoon, but managed to snuff out threats to beat the Tigers 5-2.
Singer was uncharacteristically erratic with his pitch location. He walked five batters, which ties his career high. This is just the fourth time in 11 starts this year that he’s walked multiple batters. Detroit managed to put runners on base in each of his six innings but only scratched across a single run. This came in the first, which is a hell of an escape from Singer given he loaded the bases with nobody out. He rolled up double plays in the second and third innings and got a double play of the strike-’em-out, throw-’em-out variety in the fifth. The Tigers managed to load the bases again in the sixth, but Singer stranded them with big strikeouts of Spencer Torkelson and Akil Baddoo. He also got a big boost from his defense in the fourth. With two runners on and nobody out, Jeimer Candelario lined a single to right field. Jonathon Schoop rounded third and Edward Olivares fired a strike home. Schoop was initially called safe, but the call was overturned on replay review. Singer retired the next two to end the inning.
The Royals offense made loud contact against Tigers starter Tarik Skubal, registering eight hard-hit balls against him, six of which had an exit velo over 100 mph. Yet it was soft contact that kickstarted the scoring for Kansas City. Andrew Benintendi went the other way with a soft grounder for a single and Hunter Dozier followed with a chopper for an infield hit. Emmanuel Rivera yanked one down the left field line that just stayed fair to score Benintendi and tie the game 1-1. Then the Royals capitalized on some Detroit fielding miscues. Vinnie Pasquantino reached on a fielder’s choice to load the bases. Olivares then crushed a grounder at 108 mph right at Schoop. He booted the ball, sending it flying over his head and into the outfield to score two. Nicky Lopez brought home another on a sac fly to make it 4-1. Kansas City put across another in the fifth with an RBI triple from Dozier.
Singer gave way to the bullpen with a 5-1 lead in the seventh. Amir Garrett relieved him. He walked the leadoff batter but came back to strike out the next two. Unfortunately, we were robbed of a chance to see a Javier Báez-Amir Garrett matchup as Wyatt Mills was brought on to face Báez. He gave up a double that scored Robbie Grossman from first, but that would be all Detroit could manage against the notoriously stingy Kansas City bullpen as they held on for a 5-2 victory.
A couple interesting notes:
- Vinnie Pasquantino continued to absolutely pummel the ball, registering exit velos of 99.1, 108.6, 106.4, and 98.7. These resulted in two groundouts, a fielder’s choice, and a flyout. Get that launch angle figured out big guy.
- Despite 23 baserunners between the two teams, this game moved right along, finishing in a tidy 2 hours 44 minutes. This is in part because Singer is one of the fastest working pitchers in the majors, while Skubal is comfortably above average himself.
The win moves the Royals to 35-53 and gives them the series victory. This is the first time in 2022 that Kansas City has won consecutive series’ at Kauffman Stadium, and also the first time they’ve won a game in which they trailed after the first inning. They will hop across the border for a four-game set in Toronto tomorrow, their last series before the All-Star break.
Brady Singer - 6.0 IP, 7 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 5 BB, 6 K, 0 HR
Tarik Skubal - 6.0 IP, 8 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 0 BB, 5 K, 0 HR
Hunter Dozier - 2-4, 3B, R, RBI
Javier Báez - 2-4, 2B, BB, RBI