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Anibal Sanchez, Nats beat Tigers 3-1

DETROIT (AP) — Anibal Sanchez beat his former team for his third win in four starts, Juan Soto hit his 14th home run of the season and the Washington Nationals beat the Detroit Tigers 3-1 on Friday night.

Sanchez (4-6), who went 46-49 for the Tigers from 2012-17, was facing his old team for the first time. He allowed six hits and struck out eight in six innings.

Fernando Rodney pitched the ninth and recorded his first save of the season.

Daniel Norris (2-7) was removed the game after five innings with a cut on his pitching thumb.

Soto opened the scoring in the second inning with a 418-foot solo homer into the right-field seats.

Adam Eaton’s two-out single in the fifth scored Victor Robles to make it 2-0. Howie Kendrick’s RBI double scored Soto in the eighth.

Nick Castellanos accounted for Detroit’s run in the bottom of the fifth with his eighth homer of the season, a 436-foot drive to center. Castellanos has hit safely in 30 of his last 34 games.

The Nationals have won four straight and at 41-40 moved above .500 for the first time since they were 9-8 on April 18.

The Tigers have lost eight in a row. Detroit scored one run for the third straight game. The Tigers are last in the major leagues with 266 runs scored.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Nationals: The Nationals reinstated 1B Ryan Zimmerman from the 10-Day Injured List. Zimmerman missed 53 games with plantar fasciitis in his right foot. Washington optioned outfielder Michael A. Taylor to Double-A Harrisburg.

Tigers: Detroit placed RHP Spencer Turnbull (right shoulder fatigue) on the 10-day IL and recalled OF Victor Reyes from Triple-A Toledo.

UP NEXT

Nationals: Right-hander Austin Voth (0-0) faces Detroit in the second game of this series.

Tigers: Detroit has yet to name a starter for Saturday’s game against the Nationals.

Blue Jays 6, Royals 2

TORONTO– Eric Sogard hit a tiebreaking home run in the seventh inning, Lourdes Gurriel Jr. homered twice for his second straight multi-homer game and the Toronto Blue Jays snapped a three-game losing streak with a 6-2 win over the Kansas City Royals on Friday.

Randal Grichuk added a two-run homer for Toronto, which won its second straight at home following a seven-game losing streak.

Gurriel Jr. hit a two-run homer off Danny Duffy in the sixth and added a solo shot off Wily Peralta in the eighth, the fourth multi-homer game of his career. Gurriel Jr. also homered twice in Wednesday’s loss at Yankee Stadium.

He’s the fourth player in Blue Jays’ history with consecutive multi-homer games. The others were Josh Donaldson (2017), Edwin Encarnacion (2014), and Jesse Barfield (1983).

Gurriel Jr. has 14 homers in 125 at-bats since being recalled from Triple-A Buffalo on May 24. He’s batting .352 (44 for 125) in that span.

Sogard broke a 2-2 tie with a two-out homer to right off Duffy (3-4). The homer was Sogard’s ninth, extending his career-high. Sogard began the season with 11 homers in eight seasons, and had never hit more than three in a season before this year.

Grichuk capped the scoring with a two-out homer off Tim Hill in the eighth, his team-leading 15th.

Right-hander Daniel Hudson (4-2) pitched 1 1/3 innings for the win.

Duffy allowed three runs and seven hits in 6 2/3 innings. He’s winless in seven starts since beating the Los Angeles Angels on May 19.

Six of the 10 homers hit off Duffy this season have come in his last three starts.

The Royals have lost five of seven.

Sean Reid-Foley made his first start for the Blue Jays since April 1. The right-hander allowed two runs and five hits in 5 1/3 innings.

Kansas City’s Martin Maldonado opened the scoring with a two-out homer off Reid-Foley in the fifth, his fourth. Maldonado went 3 for 4 with three extra-base hits.

David Phelps replaced Reid-Foley in the sixth after Nicky Lopez doubled and Alex Gordon followed with an RBI single.

Toronto tied it in the bottom half on Gurriel’s first homer.

Kansas City loaded the bases against Joe Biagini in the seventh, but Hudson came on and got the Blue Jays out of the jam. First baseman Justin Smoak made a backhanded stop on Nicky Lopez’s grounder, then won the race to the bag to end the inning.

Gordon hit a leadoff double against Hudson in the eighth, but Hudson struck out the next three batters.