KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Miguel Cabrera had four hits, including a homer during a five-run sixth inning, and the Tigers held off the Royals 6-3 Monday night to clinch the AL Central title.
Gerald Laird added a bases-loaded double, Rick Porcello pitched shutout ball into the sixth inning and Jhonny Peralta went deep off Kansas City starter Bruce Chen to help Detroit reach the postseason in consecutive years for the first time since 1934-35.
After hanging over the dugout railing the entire ninth inning, the Tigers streamed onto the field and behind the pitcher's mound to celebrate their accomplishment the moment Jose Valverde got Alcides Escobar to ground out to shortstop with a runner on second for his 35th save in 40 chances.
The Tigers (87-73) will have the worst record among AL division champions, which means they'll open the playoffs Saturday at home against the division winner with the second-best mark.