MLB

more stats

American League Preview from The Sports Network



Friday, August 16th (All times Eastern)

Kansas City Royals (62-57) at Detroit Tigers (71-49), 1:08 & 7:08 p.m. (DH)

Probable Starting Pitchers: Game 1: Kansas City - Danny Duffy (0-0, 4.91) Detroit - Justin Verlander(12-8, 3.57)

Game 2: Kansas City - James Shields (7-8, 3.33) Detroit - Jose Alvarez (1-2, 5.03)

(Sports Network) - The good news for the Kansas City Royals is that they still have four more chances to make up some ground on the AL Central-leading Detroit Tigers.

Still, the Royals face a tough challenge on Friday as they are set to battle the Tigers in a day/night doubleheader after dropping the opener of this five- game series.

Kansas City has lost three in a row following a 17-3 stretch and Thursday's 4-1 setback dropped the Royals 8 1/2 games behind the Tigers in the standings. Detroit, meanwhile, is 6 1/2 games up on Cleveland in the division.

Alex Gordon had an RBI single off Detroit starter Anibal Sanchez in the first inning yesterday, but Kansas City managed just four hits in the game after the frame.

"We had Sanchez early," Kansas City manager Ned Yost. "We just couldn't do anything with him after that."

Jeremy Guthrie allowed four runs on 13 hits over seven frames for Kansas City in the loss.

Andy Dirks had four hits, including two doubles, for the Tigers and also scored twice. Prince Fielder hit a two-run homer, his first since July 24, and Sanchez allowed just the one run over 7 1/3 innings.

Detroit has won back-to-back games following a 1-4 stretch.

"We don't want to give them any chance to get close to us," Sanchez said of the Royals.

The up-and-down Justin Verlander returns to the mound for the Tigers today in the first game having failed to secure a third straight winning start last Sunday at New York.

Verlander was reached by the Yankees for four runs on seven hits and a walk over seven innings, but also struck out nine. However, he yielded a pair of homers and was in line for a loss before a late Tigers rally.

The 30-year-old righty is 12-8 with a 3.57 earned run average in 25 starts this season and was roughed up for six runs -- five earned -- over 5 2/3 innings of a loss when he last faced the Royals on July 20 in Kansas City.

Verlander still has excellent career numbers in this series, going 15-3 with a 2.74 ERA over 26 encounters.

The Royals will counter Verlander with Danny Duffy, while James Shields pitches the nightcap against Detroit's Jose Alvarez.

Following Tommy John surgery last June, the 24-year-old Duffy made his season debut on Aug. 7 in a start versus Minnesota and did not factor into a 5-2 win. He logged 3 2/3 innings, allowing two runs on six hits and a pair of walks while striking out seven.

Duffy is 3-0 with a 4.13 ERA in 11 games (9 starts) with Triple-A Omaha, where he will be recalled from prior to the game, and owns a career record of 6-10 with a 5.27 ERA in 27 Major League starts.

The righty has faced Detroit four times before and is 0-3 with a 5.16 ERA.

Shields, meanwhile, is coming off his third victory in four starts.

The right-hander won a 4-3 decision over Boston on Sunday, charged with three runs -- two earned -- on seven hits and three walks over seven innings. That came one start after Shields allowed seven runs over six innings of a setback to Minnesota on Aug. 6.

"I thought Shields threw the ball much better," Yost said on his team's website after the win over the Red Sox. "He made a little minor adjustment in his mechanics and it paid off big for him today. I thought him going out and getting us through the seventh inning was huge."

Shields is 7-8 with a 3.33 ERA in 25 starts this season, going 0-1 in three meetings with Detroit. However, the 31-year-old is 5-2 against the Tigers lifetime with a 3.56 ERA.

The Tigers will also need to add Alvarez to the roster today and the 24-year- old rookie has made four starts with Detroit this season, the last coming on July 1 in Toronto. Over his first taste of big league action, Alvarez is 1-2 with a 5.03 ERA.

The left-hander is 8-6 with a 2.79 ERA in 20 starts on the season with the Triple-A Toledo.

The Royals lead the season series with the Tigers 5-4.

08/16 10:27:06 ET

  • ACC: Wake Forest at Duke

    Tonight at 8:00 on WRAL-TV

  • ACC: Syracuse at NC State

    Saturday at 12:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • SEC: Florida at Kentucky

    Saturday at 2:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • Pac 12: Stanford at Arizona

    Saturday at 4:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • ACC: Duke vs. Wake Forest

    Tonight at 8:00 on 620am

  • Big Ten: Wisconsin at Minnesota

    Tomorrow at 7:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • NBA: Dallas at Portland

    Tomorrow at 9:30 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • NHL: Hurricanes vs. Minnesota

    Friday at 8:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
7:30pm Tonight
BRK
CHA
 
8:00pm Tonight
DUKE
WAKE
 
1:05pm Today
BAL
DET
 
1:05pm Today
ATL
NYM
 
1:05pm Today
NYY
PHI
 
1:05pm Today
PIT
TOR
 
3:05pm Today
LOS
CWS
 
3:05pm Today
CLE
CIN
 
3:05pm Today
TEX
KAN
 
3:05pm Today
SFG
OAK
 
3:05pm Today
SEA
SDP
 
3:05pm Today
MIL
WMIL
 
3:10pm Today
COL
ARI
 
7:05pm Tonight
MIN
UMIN
 
7:00pm Tonight
ORL
PHO
 
7:30pm Tonight
BRK
CHA
 
7:30pm Tonight
TOR
CLE
 
7:30pm Tonight
BOS
UTA
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
DEN
 
8:00pm Tonight
NOP
DET
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIA
LAL
 
8:00pm Tonight
HOU
MEM
 
8:00pm Tonight
OKC
PHI
 
8:30pm Tonight
SAN
SAC
 
10:30pm Tonight
GSW
MIL
 
10:30pm Tonight
LAC
POR
 
12:00pm Today
PBY
LONG
 
2:00pm Today
GWEBB
CAMP
 
6:00pm Tonight
UNCA
LIB
 
6:00pm Tonight
PSU
OSU
 
7:00pm Tonight
USB
BING
 
7:00pm Tonight
FORD
DUQ
 
7:00pm Tonight
GMAS
GWU
 
7:00pm Tonight
UNH
HART
 
7:00pm Tonight
STJOE
LAS
 
7:00pm Tonight
Terriers
LIU
 
7:00pm Tonight
GTDNS
MAINE
 
7:00pm Tonight
LOU
ND
 
7:00pm Tonight
SHU
PROV
 
7:00pm Tonight
BRY
SHU
 
7:00pm Tonight
MORE
SEMIZ
 
7:00pm Tonight
MNTER
RFLSH
 
7:00pm Tonight
LSU
TENN
 
7:00pm Tonight
SFLA
UCF
 
7:00pm Tonight
VERM
UMBC
 
7:00pm Tonight
RMU
WAGN
 
7:30pm Tonight
UMASS
RICH
 
8:00pm Tonight
TULA
HOU
 
8:00pm Tonight
YALE
HOW
 
8:00pm Tonight
PITT
MIAMI
 
8:00pm Tonight
TXPA
NMST
 
8:00pm Tonight
MSU
PURD
 
8:00pm Tonight
STLU
BONA
 
8:00pm Tonight
DUKE
WAKE
 
9:00pm Tonight
TULSA
CIN
 
9:00pm Tonight
VANDY
MSST
 
9:00pm Tonight
EILL
SIUE
 
9:00pm Tonight
MARQ
STJ
 
9:00pm Tonight
OKST
TCU
 
9:00pm Tonight
UCLA
USC
 
9:00pm Tonight
WYO
UTST
 
10:00pm Tonight
FRES
AFA
 
10:00pm Tonight
SJST
BSU
 
10:00pm Tonight
NEV
COLST
 
10:00pm Tonight
ILL
NEB
 
11:00pm Tonight
ORST
OREG
 
11:00pm Tonight
UNLV
SDST
 
11:59pm Tonight
HAW
UCSB
 
Final
EDM 2
LOS 5
7:30pm Tonight
WIN
OTT
 
8:00pm Tonight
DET
NYR
 
10:00pm Tonight
ANA
MON
 
10:00pm Tonight
COL
PIT