A routine slide into second that was anything but routine gave the Tigers their first one-run victory since Aug. 23 — and their first undisputed hold on first place in the AL Central since July 23.
In the eighth inning against the Kansas City Royals, Andy Dirks singled pinch runner Don Kelly to third with one out and then broke up a potential double play with a hard, aggressive slide into second that upended the second baseman, Irving Falu, and let Kelly cross the plate with the winning run.
The Tigers beat the Royals 5-4, and when the Chicago White Sox fell 6-4 to the Cleveland Indians, Detroit was on top of the division standings.
Kelly pinch-ran for Delmon Young, who hit a one-out single, and then stole second.
“That was probably one of my top slides,” Dirks said. “I was on him pretty good.”
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