Tigers 9, Royals 4
The Royals had to fight a two front war on Sunday, and as many European dictators can attest, that’s almost always a losing battle. They had to deal with Justin Verlander (7 GS, 47 IP, 2.68 ERA, 3.02 FIP, 1.4 fWAR), who was on his game today and did not allow a hit until the 6th inning and the Tigers bats. Verlander walked four and allowed a three spot in the 7th, but that was after the Tigers had already put this game out of reach. The offense scored early and often as every member of the starting lineup had a hit, punctuated by home runs from Castellanos and Avila. Davis also had three hits and scored three runs and Victor Martinez was IBB’d twice for the second time in the series as the Tigers marched to a 9-3 victory, their 5th straight and 10th in their last 13 tries. They’ll head back to Detroit tonight ahead of a four game set with the Astros that starts Monday. Max Scherzer (6 GS, 39 IP, 2.08 ERA, 2.71 FIP, 1.2 fWAR) will be on the hill, so bring your strikeout hats to the park.
The Moment: Castellanos hits a no doubt shot in the 2nd.
I can’t tell if Justin is a different pitcher or if he is still “struggling”. He seems to be allowing more contact, but hitters seem to be taking him to the big part of the field or having off balance swings resulting in easy grounders. His strikeouts are climbing, but his walks are climbing too. Is this a new Justin adjusting to his decreasing velocity? Either way, the results are still good. He’s on pace for about a 7 WAR season, about 20 wins and about 185 strike outs. I don’t know if he’ll win the Cy Young, but if he keeps it up then he’ll be a contender. JV is still my favorite Tiger.
I think he’s taking advantage of the bad swings, but a little too early to be sure.
Also, is there anything better than being 5-0 in the season series against the team that everyone wants to see eat the Tigers’ lunch this year? They’re doing to KC what they did the Indians last year; dominate your closest rival.