KANSAS CITY — Mike Moustakas had three hits and three RBIs and the Kansas City Royals roughed up Justin Verlander in a 9-8 victory over the Detroit Tigers on Tuesday night.
Verlander, the reigning AL MVP and Cy Young Award winner, was charged with eight earned runs, matching his career high, in 5 2-3 innings. It was the third time in Verlander's career he had surrendered eight earned runs and first since April 6, 2009, at Toronto.
Jhonny Peralta hit a tying solo homer for Detroit in the eighth, but the Royals responded in the bottom half.
Billy Butler hit a one-out single for his third hit of the game and was replaced by Lorenzo Cain, who swiped second. Salvador Perez then fouled out against Brayan Villarreal (3-4) and Phil Coke came in to face Moustakas, who doubled down the right-field line to give the Royals a 9-8 lead.
Aaron Crow (3-1) got the win despite allowing Peralta's 10th homer and Greg Holland worked out of a jam to earn his eighth save in 10 opportunities.
Austin Jackson led off the Detroit ninth with a walk and advanced to third on a groundout and wild pitch. After Miguel Cabrera struck out and Prince Fielder was walked intentionally, Delmon Young hit Holland's next pitch just outside the right-field pole. Tigers manager Jim Leyland wanted it reviewed and after looking at replays, it was ruled a foul ball. Young lined out to left on the next pitch.
Jackson went 3 for 3 and scored three times for the Tigers, who stayed 2 games back of the AL Central-leading White Sox. Fielder and Young each had two RBIs.
After striking out his first two hitters, Verlander allowed seven runs on 10 hits to the next 13 batters, throwing 56 pitches in the first two innings. The Royals batted around in a four-run second.
Alex Gordon doubled and scored in the first, then doubled home two runs in the second. It was his fifth consecutive multi-hit game and gave him a major league-leading 44 doubles.
Perez's second double in the sixth scored Jarrod Dyson and chased Verlander after the right-hander yielded 12 hits, one shy of his career high set Aug. 11, 2006, against the Chicago White Sox in his rookie season.
The Royals' 2-through-6 hitters — Alcides Escobar, Gordon, Butler, Perez and Moustakas — combined for 12 hits and nine RBIs. Moustakas began the day mired in a 1-for-23 skid.
Verlander entered with a 9-2 record and a 1.83 ERA in 13 career starts at Kauffman Stadium and a 14-2 overall record against the Royals.
Detroit scored three times in the first. Andy Dirks doubled in Jackson and scored on Young's two-out homer off Luis Mendoza.
The Royals responded with three runs in the bottom half, capped by Moustakas' two-run single.
Mendoza gave up six runs and seven hits in five innings.