Daniel Norris (1-0, 4.00 ERA) and Ian Kennedy (6-9, 3.91 ERA) take the hill in the first of a three-game series between the Detroit Tigers (63-54) and the Kansas City Royals (57-60) at Comerica Park. Action begins at 7:10 p.m. ET on Monday, Aug. 15 and can be seen on FSKC, FSDT and ESPN.
Norris pitched 5.0 innings in his most recent start, surrendering one run, striking out three and walking two in a 6-5 defeat to the Mariners. J.D. Martinez (.303, 44 Rs, 15 HRs, 44 RBIs, 1 SB) continued his strong play yesterday, going 3 for 5 with two runs, one home run, and two RBIs. Kennedy went 6.1 innings, surrendering one run, striking out two and walking two in a 3-2 win over the White Sox in his last outing. Kendrys Morales (.246, 41 Rs, 19 HRs, 55 RBIs) went 1 for 4 yesterday.
Detroit is a -133 favorite against Kansas City and the Over/Under (O/U) for this game is sitting at nine runs. The Tigers have recorded an overall money line of +1,352 and have shown high-level performance as a favorite this season with a record of 31-13. Within its division, Detroit has a 13-6 record as favorite and a 20-24 record SU. The Tigers have seen a decline in scoring as of late, averaging 2.9 runs during the last 10 games compared to their season average of 4.7 runs per game. Detroit's pitchers fall apart when division rivals are on the field. Its average runs allowed per game rises to 5.2 against fellow AL Central members, compared to its 4.5 season average. The Tigers are the fifth-best team in the AL at limiting walks during home games, allowing only 2.6 walks per game to their opponents this season.
In the other locker room, Kansas City is coming in with an overall money line of -90 and a disappointing record of 28-48 as the underdog. Despite an underwhelming record as the underdog against teams in their division (11-15), they pulled off an impressive 26-17 SU record. Offensively, the Royals have really picked up the pace in division games. They have exceeded their season average of 3.8 runs per game by averaging 4.7 in those contests.
The Royals lead the season series, 6-4. The Tigers have a 45-37 record against right-handed starting pitchers on the year, which is what they'll be facing when Kennedy takes the mound. Norris (LHP) will be on the hill against the Royals, who have a 12-15 record against left-handed starting pitchers.
Predictions: SU Winner - DET, O/U - Under
The Royals sit at 27-17 against their divisional rivals, while the Tigers are 20-24.
Kansas City has won 43% (22-29) of its games when leading after seven innings. However, Detroit has won 57% (31-23) of its games when taking a late lead.
The Royals are coming into this meeting after a high-scoring game where they scored an impressive 11 runs. The Tigers have a 0-4 record when opponents score that many runs or more.
When they outhit their opponents, the Royals are 45-16. The Tigers have a 48-11 record when outhitting opponents.
Ranking 27th, Kansas City sits near the bottom of the league in runs, scoring 457 this season. Detroit ranks in the top 10 at ninth with 550.
Ranking 30th, Kansas City is at the bottom of the league in walks, notching 263 this season. Detroit ranks in the bottom half at 16th with 346.
When the Tigers hit at least one home run, they are 51-30. When the Royals hit at least one homer, they have a 39-33 record.