Friday (Game 1): Tigers vs. Royals
With lefty Danny Duffy on the mound for KC in Game 1, the Tigers’ task of mixing lineups for this day-night doubleheader is a little bit easier. Matt Tuiasosopo gets the start in left field, while Bryan Holaday starts behind the plate. Holaday will be catching Justin Verlander for the second time this year.
Look for Brayan Pena to get behind the plate for the night game, of course. Ramon Santiago is expected to start the nightcap at second base and give Omar Infante the evening off. Jim Leyland said last night that he’ll most likely rest Torii Hunter on Saturday, so don’t be surprised if he plays both games today. Not sure what that means for Don Kelly playing today.
It would not be an exaggeration to suggest the Tigers need eight innings out of Verlander today. Jim Leyland said this morning that he wasn’t sure whether he’d have Joaquin Benoit available for either game today, or Bruce Rondon for that matter. Benoit has pitched back-to-back days, including 27 pitches to get the final four outs on Wednesday in Chicago. Rondon is more of an interesting case as a younger pitcher, but he has pitched three out of the last four days, which has been a resting point for Leyland with pitchers in the past.
Interesting decision by the Royals to sit Salvador Perez for the day game. He’s a respectable 5-for-15 off Verlander, while George Kottaras has never faced him.
TIGERS (career numbers off Duffy)
- Austin Jackson, CF (2-for-10, HR, 4 K’s)
- Torii Hunter, RF
- Miguel Cabrera, 3B (3-for-10, 2 walks, 3 K’s)
- Prince Fielder, DH (0-for-3, K)
- Victor Martinez, 1B (2-for-7, walk)
- Matt Tuiasosopo, LF
- Omar Infante, 2B
- Jose Iglesias, SS
- Bryan Holaday, C
P: Justin Verlander
ROYALS (career numbers off Verlander)
- Chris Getz, 2B (6-for-27, walk, 3 K’s)
- Eric Hosmer, 1B (6-for-29, 4 walks, 7 K’s)
- Billy Butler, DH (25-for-59, 2 HR, 7 walks, 8 K’s)
- Alex Gordon, LF (11-for-55, 2 HR, 7 walks, 21 K’s)
- Justin Maxwell, RF
- Emilio Bonifacio, 3B
- George Kottaras, C
- Alcides Escobar, SS (6-for-31, walk, 4 K’s)
- Jarrod Dyson, CF (3-for-10, 2 walks, 3 K’s)
P: Danny Duffy