Big homers sink Tigers despite late knocks

Detroit Tigers

One night after having their seven-game win streak snapped, the Tigers were on their way back to the win column with a six-run lead over the Royals.

The early lead, powered by a three-run home run from Jeimer Candelario in the third inning, gave Detroit a 90 percent win probability, according to Statcast. But two swings from Kansas City’s veteran bats flipped the script during the Tigers’ 9-8 loss on Saturday at Kauffman Stadium.

Reliever Joe Jiménez held the game at 6-4 with his 1-2-3 sixth inning, but Kyle Funkhouser could not replicate that success in the seventh. Funkhouser allowed back-to-back one-out singles before a three-run homer to Carlos Santana surrendered Detroit’s lead.

Starter Casey Mize, whose 4 2/3 innings marked his longest outing since throwing six innings on June 26, suffered a similar fate before his exit.

Mize kept the Royals scoreless through his first four innings and limited them to two hits and one walk heading into the fifth.

Mize allowed a run after giving up three consecutive singles to start the frame, then followed that by striking out Whit Merrifield and getting Santana to fly out. But a two-out mistake pitch to Salvador Perez ended up as a 452-foot three-run homer and ended Mize’s night.

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