Here's the pitching matchups for the Detroit series:
Friday – RHP Silva (3-2, 5.14) vs. vs. LHP Robertson (3-3, 5.88), 7:10 p.m.
Saturday – RHP Hernandez (2-5, 3.60) vs. RHP Verlander (2-7, 5.16), 12:55 p.m.
Sunday – RHP Batista (3-3, 5.98) vs. LHP Rogers (6-4, 5.88), 1:10 p.m.
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Sweeping the Mariners last week in Detroit didn't exactly propel the Tigers onward and upward. Since outscoring Seattle 30-14 in a three-game series the Tigers have lost two out of three to the Minnesota Twins and two out of three to the Los Angeles Angels.
The big reason is spotty offense, which looked otherworldly against the Mariners. The Tigers scored 19 runs vs. the Twins on Saturday and then scored only nine in their next four games.
On Wednesday, the Tigers made some moves in an attempt to correct that. Outfielder Marcus Thames was told he would be getting more at-bats while Gary Sheffield is on the disabled list and outfielder Matt Joyce was demoted to Triple-A.
Thames responded with two homers – and nearly hit a third – in the Tigers' 6-2 victory over the Angels.
Detroit's starting pitching, which struggled in the first month of the season, appears to be coming around. Starters have recorded a quality start in 12 of the last 17 games.
PLAYER TO WATCH
Placido Polanco. The Tigers' second baseman has been on fire since April 25. In that span, he's hit .367 (44-for-120) with 12 doubles.
RECORD VS. MARINERS
The Tigers are 3-0 vs. Seattle. Detroit's played well at Safeco Field the last two years, going 7-3 there.
DID YOU KNOW?
The Tigers have beat up on the AL West this season. Detroit is 8-4 vs. the division while averaging over seven runs per game.