The Kansas City Royals finally lost, but slugger Billy Butler hopes their impressive push in the A.L. Central will go on.
“This doesn’t end anything,” he said. “We’ve got 10-1 in our last 11 games, and we’re going home in first place. We just have to keep playing the way we are right now.”
Anibal Sanchez pitched seven sharp innings, and the Detroit Tigers snapped Kansas City’s 10-game winning streak with a 2-1 victory Thursday. J.D. Martinez hit a tiebreaking homer in the fourth for the Tigers.
“We just had a great road trip, Danny Duffy just pitched a great game, and we lost a game to a great pitcher and a home run where I have no idea how J.D. Martinez hit the ball out of the park,” Royals manager Ned Yost said. “All I can do is tip my cap to him, because he killed us all series.”
The Royals were without outfielder Alex Gordon, who sat out because of flu-like symptoms. Detroit outfielder Torii Hunter (hamstring) did not play either.
Harper batting again
Washington Nationals slugger Bryce Harper is showing plenty of pop as he resumes on-field batting practice for the first time since undergoing ligament surgery on his left thumb last month.
Manager Matt Williams said Harper will begin a minor league rehab assignment after the Nationals begin a road trip next week.
Harper said he wants to spend eight or nine games in the minors to really push his thumb before returning to the big league club.
DeJesus to DL
The Tampa Bay Rays have placed outfielder David DeJesus on the 15-day disabled list with a broken left hand.
The Rays also activated outfielder Brandon Guyer, who had been sidelined by a broken left thumb, from the 15-day DL.
DeJesus was hurt on a check-swing in Wednesday’s game against Baltimore.
Clearing the bases
The San Diego Padres placed first baseman Yonder Alonso on the 15-day disabled list because of tendinitis in his right wrist. … The Toronto Blue Jays have placed left-handed reliever Brett Cecil on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left groin and recalled right-hander Steve Delabar from Triple-A Buffalo. … The Minnesota Twins have placed infielder Eduardo Nunez on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right hamstring. … The Arizona Diamondbacks have selected right-hander pitcher Matt Stites from Triple-A Reno, optioned outfielder Tony Campana and transferred right-hander Daniel Hudson to the 60-day disabled list.