DETROIT (AP) — Ryan Kreidler scored twice in his major league debut, including the go-ahead run on pinch-hitter Harold Castro’s seventh-inning single, and the Detroit Tigers edged the Kansas City Royals 5-4 on Friday night.
“Super fun,” said Kreidler, who was promoted from Triple-A Toledo on Thursday. “Got the nerves out somewhat. I think I’ll still be nervous tomorrow and the next day, but it’s all good.”
Batting ninth, Kreidler drew two walks. He lined out in his first at-bat and struck out in his last trip to the plate.
“I was ready to swing at every pitch,” he said. “My last at-bat showed that. I swung at a lot of pitches. But I was just trying to get them in the zone and try to treat it like another game.
“I wouldn’t be crazy aggressive in any other game in the minors, so I’m just going to try to be the same person up here that I was down there.”
Javier Baez hit a two-run homer and Willi Castro had three hits, including a solo homer. Detroit snapped a three-game losing streak.
Andrew Chafin (1-2) got the win with 1 1/3 innings of scoreless relief. Gregory Soto struck out the side in the ninth for his 24th save.
Michael A. Taylor hit a two-run homer for the Royals, who have dropped three straight. Carlos Hernandez (0-4) took the loss.
Tigers starter Drew Hutchison gave up four runs, three earned, and six hits in 5 2/3 innings. Royals starter Daniel Lynch allowed four runs and five hits in five innings.
Kansas City scored a pair of two-out runs in the second. Kyle Isbel had an RBI single and Riley Greene’s error while trying to retrieve the ball allowed another run to come home.
Detroit scored four runs in the fifth. Castro hit his solo homer with one out. Victor Reyes drove in the second run with a sacrifice fly before Baez launched his 12th homer on a full count.
Baez had gone 17 games without a homer. It was just his second since the beginning of August.
“It felt weird because I hadn’t hit a homer in two months,” Baez said. “I was working on my hitting before the game. I was moving my arms too much.”
Taylor’s ninth homer in the sixth tied it at 4.
Harold Castro poked his two-out single to left to drive in Kreidler in the seventh.
“Seventh inning, we have the leadoff walk and it comes back to bite us,” Royals manager Mike Matheny said. “In a close game like that, the free bases are what’s going to be the deciding factor.”
TRAINER’S ROOM: Tigers 2B Jonathan Schoop (right ankle sprain) is expected to begin a rehab assignment with Triple-A Toledo this weekend. Schoop, sidelined since Aug. 20, is batting .202 with nine homers and 34 RBIs. … C Eric Haase departed after the first inning with a lower abdominal contusion. He was struck by a foul ball off Salvador Perez’s bat.
UP NEXT: Royals RHP Jonathan Heasley (2-7, 5.22 ERA) will start the middle game of the series Saturday. He gave up four runs (three earned) in five innings against San Diego on Sunday while earning his second victory this season.
Tigers RHP Michael Pineda (2-6, 5.27 ERA) will make his first start since July 23 on Saturday. He was activated from the injured list this week after recovering from a triceps injury.
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