Jeremy Guthrie cooled down the surging Detroit Tigers and guided the Kansas City Royals to their sixth straight win with a 3-2 triumph on Monday.
Guthrie surrendered a two-run home run to American League batting leader Miguel Cabrera to fall 2-0 behind in the third inning but recovered well before his bullpen finished off the AL Central-leading Tigers (35-27).
Kansas City (29-32) responded quickly to falling behind, scoring three runs in the bottom of the third, and after Guthrie left the game in the seventh inning, four Royals relievers combined to close out the game.
Detroit had their four-game winning streak snapped, but still maintained their 5 1/2-game lead at the top of the division.
In Tampa Bay, the Boston Red Sox outlasted the Rays 10-8 after 14 innings in an AL East battle that turned ugly with a bench-clearing skirmish.
Daniel Nava hit the go-ahead, two-run single in the top of the 14th with the game knotted 8-8 as the Red Sox took their third straight game and extended their lead atop the AL East.
But the real drama happened in the sixth inning when Boston pitcher John Lackey hit Matt Joyce in the back with a pitch.
Joyce began yelling at the mound and both teams piled onto the field for a pushing and shoving contest. There were no ejections.
In Chicago, the big bat of Brandon Phillips carried the Cincinnati Reds past the Cubs 6-2 as the slugger tallied all six RBIs.
Phillips homered in the first inning, blasted a grand slam in the third, and brought in another run in the eighth to match a career-high.
Reds starter Homer Bailey tossed eight innings and surrendered one unearned run to control the Cubs.
Cincinnati (38-26) moved to within 3 1/2 games of first-place St Louis in the NL Central.