KANSAS CITY, Mo., Sept. 10 (UPI) -- Billy Butler had three doubles and drove in a run apiece with two of them Wednesday in leading the Kansas City Royals to a 5-1 win over Detroit.
Kansas City has won three in a row for the first time since July 4-6. Detroit has dropped two straight and saw its lead in the American League Central reduced to 5 1/2 games over Minnesota.
Butler scored the game's first run on a single by Mike Jacobs in the third and the lead remained 1-0 until Butler's first RBI double in the seventh.
Kansas City broke things open with a three-run eighth, with another Butler double driving in the final run of the inning.
Justin Verlander (16-8) took the loss, giving up a run on six hits with eight strikeouts in six innings.
Detroit loaded the bases with one out against Jamey Wright in the ninth before Joakim Soria came on to end the threat. He allowed a sacrifice fly to Alex Avila for Detroit's only run and then struck out Marcus Thames to end the game and earn his 24th save.