DETROIT -- Nate Robertson's teammates knew he deserved to win a game at home.
On Friday night, it finally happened.
"This is great," said Dmitri Young, who also homered for the Tigers. "Nate has gone out there all season and given us his all with no run support."
Robertson (4-7) won for the first time in nine home starts, giving up one run and five hits in five innings. He is 1-4 at Comerica Park with a 2.50 ERA.
"It feels good," Robertson said. "I'll take any win I can get at this point. I would have liked to go more than five innings, but give the Royals credit. They were aggressive and made me throw a lot of pitches."
Robertson got plenty of help from Detroit's bullpen, especially Fernando Rodney, who struck out a career-high seven in his three-inning stint.
"He was lights-out," Robertson said. "He's a very special pitcher when he has things going - he throws so hard and then he's got a change that's 15 or 18 miles slower."
Jose Lima (2-8), scheduled to start Saturday night, was moved up a day to replace D.J. Carrasco, who was a late scratch because of tightness in his shoulder. Lima allowed four runs -- three earned -- and nine hits, including two long homers, in six innings.
"I only found out about 45 minutes before the game," he said. "It's not a problem, because I have a rubber arm, but I played 18 holes of golf today. I would never do that on the day I pitch."
Detroit went ahead 2-0 in the second on Rodriguez's 415-foot homer over the bullpens in left. Rodriguez only hit six homers before the All-Star break, but finished second to Bobby Abreu in Monday's Home Run Derby.
Joe McEwing's first homer in 14 months made it 2-1 in the third, but the Tigers scored an unearned run in the fourth.
"That one hurt us," Royals manager Buddy Bell said. "If we make that play, we're still right in the game."
Young's 16th homer, a 432-foot drive to right-center in the sixth, gave the Tigers their 4-1 lead.
"I don't think it is possible to hit a ball harder than he hit that one," Tigers manager Alan Trammell said.
Young has three homers against Lima this season, including two on opening day.
"He either strikes out or hits a home run," Lima said. "Home runs don't bother me. I'm the King of Home Runs."
Young also helped out defensively in his first outfield start in exactly a year. Playing left, he made a leaping catch of Mike Sweeney's drive in the third inning, then snagged a sinking liner by the next hitter, Emil Brown.
"I had some jitters, because I didn't want to mess up," he said. "But after I got the first one out of the way, I was fine."
|Players of the Game|
|Kansas City Royals|
|David DeJesus, CF||2||0||1||0||3||0||0||.294|
|Ruben Gotay, 2B||5||0||2||0||0||1||3||.247|
|Mike Sweeney, DH||4||0||0||0||0||2||5||.308|
|Emil Brown, RF||4||0||1||0||0||0||4||.286|
|Tony Graffanino, 1B||3||0||0||0||0||2||0||.304|
|a- Matt Stairs, PH-1B||1||0||0||0||0||1||1||.256|
|Angel Berroa, SS||4||0||1||0||0||1||1||.270|
|John Buck, C||4||0||2||0||0||2||2||.230|
|Shane Costa, LF||4||0||0||0||0||2||3||.250|
|Joe McEwing, 3B||2||1||1||1||0||0||0||.274|
|b- Mark Teahen, PH-3B||2||0||0||0||0||1||0||.250|
|a-struck out for Graffanino in the 8th|
|b-lined out for McEwing in the 7th|
|2B - David DeJesus (17, Rodney)|
|HR - Joe McEwing (1, Robertson)|
|RBI - Joe McEwing (3)|
|Team LOB - 10|
|E - Ruben Gotay (7, Misplayed grounder)|
|Kansas City Royals|
|Jose Lima (L,2-8)||6||9||4||3||0||3||2||7.16|
|Pitches-Strikes - Jose Lima 102-71, Leo Nunez 19-13, Andy Sisco 17-10|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jose Lima 6-9|
|Batters Faced - Jose Lima 27, Leo Nunez 4, Andy Sisco 4|
|Brandon Inge, 3B||4||0||1||0||0||1||0||.281|
|Carlos Guillen, SS||4||0||1||0||0||0||2||.352|
|Chris Shelton, 1B||4||0||1||0||0||2||2||.354|
|Magglio Ordonez, RF||4||0||1||0||0||0||2||.236|
|Rondell White, DH||4||1||2||0||0||0||2||.310|
|Ivan Rodriguez, C||4||2||2||2||0||1||1||.296|
|Dmitri Young, LF||4||1||1||1||0||1||2||.247|
|Kevin Hooper, LF||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Craig Monroe, CF||4||0||2||0||0||1||1||.285|
|Omar Infante, 2B||3||0||0||0||0||1||3||.224|
|2B - Brandon Inge (17, Lima)|
|HR - Ivan Rodriguez (7, Lima), Dmitri Young (16, Lima)|
|RBI - Ivan Rodriguez 2 (34), Dmitri Young (42)|
|CS - Carlos Guillen (2, 2nd base by Lima/Buck)|
|Team LOB - 7|
|Nate Robertson (W,4-7)||5||5||1||1||2||3||1||3.28|
|Fernando Rodney (H,1)||3||3||0||0||0||7||0||3.00|
|Kyle Farnsworth (S,2)||1||0||0||0||1||2||0||1.89|
|Pitches-Strikes - Nate Robertson 99-65, Fernando Rodney 49-34, Kyle Farnsworth 18-9|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Nate Robertson 4-8|
|Batters Faced - Nate Robertson 22, Fernando Rodney 12, Kyle Farnsworth 4|
|Attendance - 30807|
|Game Time - 2:46|
|Temperature - 87|
|Umpires - Home - Dana DeMuth, First Base - Troy Fullwood, Second Base - Marty Foster, Third Base - Lazaro Diaz|