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DETROIT — Shortstop Alex Gonzalez punctuated a goat-to-hero transformation today with the game-winning single in the Tigers' 4-3 victory over Kansas City in today's season opener at Comerica Park.
Acquired as an eleventh-hour replacement for the injured Jose Iglesias, the 37-year-old Gonzalez made a fourth-inning error that helped push the Royals in front 3-1. But he answered with a run-scoring triple in the Tigers' two-run seventh and drove in the game-winner with a one-out single off Greg Holland in the bottom of the ninth, ensuring a winning debut for manager Brad Ausmus.
Tigers ace Justin Verlander allowed three runs — two earned — over six innings in his seventh straight season-opening start.