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Martinez, Scherzer lift Tigers to home opener victory over Kansas City

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Final - 4.8.2011 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Kansas City Royals 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 2 11 0
Detroit Tigers 4 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 X 5 10 0
WP: Max Scherzer (2 - 0)
SV: Jose Valverde (2)
LP: Kyle Davies (0 - 1)

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BOX

Player of the Game (never too late to alter my recap formula!)

Victor Martinez

Key stat:

4 hits, 4 runs, 4 walks and 3 RBI: The combined numbers put up by Venezuelans Magglio Ordonez, Miguel Cabrera and Martinez

Key play:

With the bases loaded and one out in the first, Martinez made sure the squander bug couldn't bite by hitting a three-run double. It turns out that's all the runs the Tigers needed.

Key thoughts:

Martinez really is a great addition to the team. Having him bat behind Cabrera is already paying dividends and should continue to do so throughout the year. An easy to root for player who has been having some good results already, Martinez will be among the fan favorites pretty quick. Glad he's on our side now.

Max Scherzer may not have had a beautiful game, but his results were pretty good: one run allowed in six innings. It's all part of the process of getting back on track.

Key today was making it through the seventh inning smoother. Brayan Villarreal and Daniel Schlereth -- typing those names back-to-back is a real workout for the fingers! -- made it through the inning having allowed one run. That preserved the 3-run lead for the traditional bullpen deployment of Joaquin Benoit and Jose Valverde. They combined to strike out two and allow a hit and no runs.

By the way: The Tigers didn't allow a home run for the first game this year. Nice to be out of those east coast band boxes.

Other things to mention: Austin Jackson and Will Rhymes settled in with three hits and just one strikeout at the top of the order. Rhymes scored a run.

Since dropping the first two games in Yankee Stadium, the Tigers have played .600 ball. Does that mean anything? Not really. But I thought I'd throw that out there.

As a side note, Grosse Pointe's Chris Getz had three hits leading off for the Royals.