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Tigers rally from early deficit to beat Royals, 5-4

DETROIT (AP) — JaCoby Jones hit a tiebreaking solo homer in the seventh inning, and Detroit’s bullpen came through again in a 5-4 victory over the Kansas City Royals on Wednesday night.

A night after pitching six scoreless innings in a win over the Royals, the Tigers’ relievers held Kansas City without a baserunner for four. Detroit rallied from a 4-0 deficit thanks in large part to Jones, who doubled twice before connecting off Ian Kennedy (0-1) for his third homer of the year.

Jonathan Schoop also went deep for the Tigers. Maikel Franco hit two doubles and a single for Kansas City, and Whit Merrifield had two hits and scored twice.

Bryan Garcia (1-0) earned his first big league win, one of four Detroit relievers who pitched in the game. Joe Jimenez worked the ninth for his fourth save.

Danny Duffy allowed only three hits in five innings for the Royals, but one of them was Schoop’s two-run shot in the fifth, which barely made it past a leaping Merrifield at the wall in right and tied the game at 4. Duffy struck out eight with one walk.

Merrifield is now 22 for 42 against Detroit’s Matthew Boyd after going 2 for 3 against him Wednesday. Boyd allowed four runs and nine hits in five innings for Detroit. He struck out six.

Detroit chipped away with sacrifice flies by Schoop in the third and Niko Goodrum in the fifth. Then Schoop went deep to tie it.

The Tigers have homered in every game so far this season after finishing last in the AL in that category in 2019.

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