KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Justin Verlander beat Kansas City once again, surviving a shaky ninth inning Monday night to deliver the Detroit Tigers a 3-2 victory over the Royals.

Austin Jackson hit a leadoff homer and Brandon Inge added a two-run shot in the fifth for the Tigers, giving their reigning AL Cy Young winner enough support when things got tight.

Verlander (1-1) allowed an RBI single by Humberto Quintero with two outs in the ninth, and then loaded the bases when he walked Mitch Maier and plunked Alcides Escobar on the elbow. Verlander came back to strike out Alex Gordon looking, sending the Royals to their fifth consecutive loss.

Verlander threw 131 pitches in improving to 14-2 lifetime against the Royals.