Prince Fielder homered and drove in three runs, and Justin Verlander pitched effectively into the seventh inning to lift the Detroit Tigers to a 6-3 victory over the Kansas City Royals on Friday night.
Detroit remained six games ahead of second-place Cleveland in the AL Central and dealt the third-place Royals a setback in the postseason race. Kansas City is one of several teams hoping at least to catch Tampa Bay for a wild card.
Verlander (13-11) allowed three runs and nine hits in 6 2-3 innings. Three relievers finished. Joaquin Benoit worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the eighth and got the final four outs for his 19th save in 19 chances.
Bruce Chen (7-3) allowed five earned runs and seven hits in 4 1-3 innings.