Tampa Bay was nearly no-hit in a 1-0 road loss to the Blue Jays on Sunday afternoon and have managed to hit for a combined .149 average in dropping five straight games. This recent skid is the club’s longest losing streak of the season, after the team had gone 10-1 in their previous 11 games. “I was beginning to think no-hitters were commonplace,” said third baseman Evan Longoria. “It seems like we’ve been a part of and watched so many this year.” Rays outfielder Carl Crawford returned to the lineup yesterday after two days of rest, going 0-for-4 with three strikeouts. Tampa is 7-3 in Monday games this season (+340) and 27-19 on this day the past three years (+620). The Rays are also a dominating 34-17 against teams with losing records in 2010 (+410).
Rays starting pitcher David Price is 14-5 with a 2.82 ERA in 21 starts this season and is coming in on a personal two-game winning streak. He picked up a no-decision in his last outing, giving up a single run and five hits over seven innings, with the club dropping a 2-1 home contest to the Twins. The left-hander is a solid 7-4 with a 3.60 ERA in 11 road starts, but has issued 32 free passes in 70 innings of work. After posting a 12-4 record and 2.42 ERA before the All-Star break, Price is just 2-1 with a 4.62 ERA in four starts since. In four career appearances (two starts) against the Tigers, he is a perfect 2-0 with a 1.65 ERA, while not allowing a home run in 16.1 innings.
Detroit will be trying to win consecutive games for just the second time since a five-game winning streak from July 5-10. The Tigers are 6-20 since that time and have fallen nine games back in the AL Central standings. The last time these two teams met this season, the Rays rolled to a four-game sweep at Tropicana Field, something that Tigers manager Jim Leyland wants to gain revenge from. “I would look like a fool, in my opinion, right now to anybody that knows anything about baseball if I said, we are as good as the Rays,” he said. “If the players read that, they are going to think he’s quitting.” The club is 36-23 at home this year (+920) and the total is 24-31 O/U in those games. The Tigers are a solid 18-13 versus left-handed starters in 2010 (+610), with the total mirroring the record (18-13 O/U).
Tigers starting pitcher Armando Galarraga is 3-4 with a 4.32 ERA in 14 appearances (13 starts) this season, alternating wins and losses in his last three outings. In his last start, he dropped a 4-1 home contest to the White Sox, giving up four runs and eight hits over 7.2 innings. He has been bitten by the long ball of late, surrendering seven home runs in his last five starts. The right-hander is an even 2-2 with a 3.32 ERA in nine road outings (eight starts), allowing opponents to hit for a just a .236 average. He will be making his 11th nighttime appearance (10th start), going 2-3 with a 4.47 ERA. In three lifetime starts versus the Rays, Galarraga carries a 1-0 record and 6.35 ERA.
Bettors will find the Rays with a 9-4 record in Price’s last 13 road games and the under being 10-0-2 in his last 12 starts versus the AL Central division. Detroit stands at 4-1 in Galarraga’s last five outings versus East opponents and the under is 7-2 in his last nine starts at Comerica Park.