The Detroit Tigers stumbled over the weekend in the nation’s capital, dropping two of three to the Washington Nationals after taking the series opener on Friday night. Nonetheless, the Motor City Kitties remain second in the American League Central division sitting 3.5 games behind the Minnesota Twins while the Cleveland Guardians fell out of the tie to 4.5 games from the top perch.
Speaking of the division, the Tigers’ next opponent is a familiar one in the Kansas City Royals, who currently reside in the basement of the AL Central by a hefty 11.5 games. The team from the City of Fountains has had a rough go at it this month, winning just seven of their 19 games. However, they were able to take three of four from the Chicago White Sox while also winning two out of three on the road against the San Diego Padres.
The Tigers should be able to handle the Royals this week, but with baseball, you never really know. Take a look below at the pitching matchups for the upcoming games — at least, what we know.
Detroit Tigers (20-24) vs. Kansas City Royals (14-34)
Times (EDT): Monday: 7:40 p.m.; Tuesday: 7:40 p.m.; Wednesday: 7:40 p.m.
Place: Kauffman Stadium, Kansas City, Missouri
SB Nation Site: Royals Review
Media: Bally Sports Detroit, MLB.TV, Tigers Radio Network
Game 45 Pitching Matchup
Game 45: RHP Michael Lorenzen (2-2, 3.44 ERA) vs. RHP Brady Singer (3-4, 7.09 ERA)
Lorenzen has been a pleasant surprise since the month of April flipped to May, with three games of near lights-out pitching under his belt. In that trio of starts, the 31-year-old notched a 0.90 ERA and a 2.79 FIP over 20 innings, allowing 14 hits and four walks while striking out 11. While his K number seems a bit low, it is worth mentioning that he amassed seven in his most recent outing against the Pittsburgh Pirates over six frames.
After a 2022 campaign that saw Singer reach the next level, the 26-year-old has seen some serious ups and downs — mostly downs — so far this spring. The fourth-year starter’s best outing came on April 25 when he tossed six innings of one-run ball on five hits and no walks while striking out five Arizona Diamondbacks batters. He nearly matched that on May 11 against the White Sox but has otherwise had issues hemorrhaging runs.
D.C. ➡️ KC pic.twitter.com/1J6bwDGclY— Detroit Tigers (@tigers) May 22, 2023
Game 46 Pitching Matchup
Game 46: LHP Eduardo Rodriguez (4-3, 2.06 ERA) vs. RHP Mike Mayers (0-0, 3.38 ERA)
Neither pitcher was announced for this game at the time of publication.
E-Rod on the hill tonight. pic.twitter.com/wo25tr1nAb— Detroit Tigers (@tigers) May 23, 2023
Game 47 Pitching Matchup
Game 47: LHP Matthew Boyd (3-3, 6.21 ERA) vs. RHP Zack Greinke (1-5, 4.82 ERA)
Future Hall of Famer Zack Greinke continues to grind away in his 20th major league season, having returned to where it all started last season for his swan song. The 39-year-old right-hander still gets the job done, as evidenced by his major league-leading 10 starts so far this season. Not that the grizzled veteran does not have any warts — he has been a bit run-prone and only has one quality start to his credit. But with an arsenal that tops out at 90 mph and nine entries on Baseball Savant’s 2023 MLB Percentile Rankings below the 35th percentile (albeit with a walk percentage in the 97th percentile), you cannot expect too much more.
Going for the series win. pic.twitter.com/19wWmmD331— Detroit Tigers (@tigers) May 24, 2023
Series Outlook: A must-win road series
While the entire picture is far from clear given the number of TBDs in this preview, the Royals currently occupy the AL Central cellar, and given their dearth of talent, belong there. The Tigers, on the other hand, have been fighting and scrapping through the first 40-plus games despite another season with a horrific offense. Long story short: Detroit needs to win two out of three at least to keep the current pace going. Because losing to K.C. is just embarrassing.