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      Verlander leads Tigers over Royals 9-4

      Justin Verlander took a no-hit bid into the sixth inning and won his fourth straight decision, leading Detroit over the Kansas City Royals 9-4 Sunday and extending the Tigers' winning streak to a season-high five games.

      Billy Butler singled to right on a 1-2 pitch with two outs in the sixth, leaving him with a .432 career average in 74 at-bats against the Detroit ace,

      Verlander (4-1) allowed three runs, four hits and four walks in seven innings with seven strikeouts. Jarrod Dyson hit a two-run triple in the seventh and scored on a sacrifice fly by Nori Aoki, who walked his first three times up.

      Verlander pitched no-hitters against Milwaukee in June 2007 and versus Toronto in May 2011. He improved to 17-5 against the Royals, the best winning percentage (.773) among active pitchers with 10 decisions or more.