|4:10 PM PT5:10 PM MT6:10 PM CT7:10 PM ET19:10 ET23:10 GMT7:10 4:10 PM MST6:10 PM EST6:40 PM VEN3:10 UAE (+1)6:10 PM CT, August 8, 2019
Comerica Park, Detroit, Michigan Attendance: 17,197
Happy to remain a Tiger, Boyd set for Royals
Kansas City Royals at Detroit Tigers
- The Royals are 4-2 at home against the Tigers but have lost five of six meetings in Detroit this season. They've lost or split their last three series in Detroit dating back to last season, last winning a series at Comerica from April 20-22, 2018.
- Kansas City split the first two games of a three-game set in Boston, but the finale was suspended in the top of the 10th inning and will be completed on August 22. Including the suspended game, the Royals are slugging just .360 since July 20, the lowest mark in MLB in that span.
- Detroit dropped three of four against the White Sox and are an AL-worst 5-21 (.192) since the All-Star Break -- only the Pirates (4-21) are worse. The Tigers have not won consecutive games since May 28-31, 2019 - their 57 games without consecutive wins is the third-longest such streak in franchise history, behind a 65-game streak in 2002-2003 and a 60-gamer in 2017-2018.
- Whit Merrifield has a hit in each of his last six games against Detroit and is batting .335 in 59 career games against the Tigers. That ranks fifth among active players with at least 100 career plate appearances against Detroit.
- Miguel Cabrera is hitting .357 (15-for-42) over his last 10 games after batting just .205 in his previous 20 games dating back to June 26. The veteran has 27 home runs against the Royals, second-most among active players; only Carlos Santana (30) has more.
- This will mark the third-earliest date in MLB history that two teams with 70+ losses square off. Last season, the Royals faced the White Sox on August 2; in 1970, the Brewers played the White Sox on August 6.
Matthew Boyd could have made meaningful starts the rest of the season if the Detroit Tigers found a suitable trade package for their ace before the July 31 trade deadline.
Boyd would rather pitch for the worst team in baseball. He's content being part of the rebuilding process, rather than a trade chip to bring in more prospects.
He'll make his second start since the trade deadline passed in the opener of a four-game home series with Kansas City on Thursday.
"This is where I want to be," Boyd said to MLB.com. "I feel called to Detroit, the city, this team. Detroit truly is home, and I'm so grateful for that. It means everything to me when I put on that uniform every single day.
"Things are changing here for the better. Everybody in this locker room knows it, and we're going to come out on the other side as a squad very, very soon."
It's hard to imagine that right now, as the Tigers can't even put back-to-back wins together. But the strength of their farm system is pitching, as some of those young arms will start helping the major league club as early as September.
"We're going to win here," Boyd said. "We're going to bring a championship here. It's going to happen. Things are changing. We have the right guys here, and we have the right people at the helm in the dugout every day. They've set the culture, and we believe in it. We know we can do it.
"It may seem dark right now, it may seem kind of gloomy, but the guys in here, the fight's there."
Boyd (6-8, 3.91 ERA) has been one of the few bright spots for the Tigers. He has 69 strikeouts over the last seven games, yet he's just 1-4 since the beginning of June, a span of 11 starts.
In his last outing, he got a no-decision while allowing two runs on six hits in 5 2/3 innings at Texas on Saturday.
He's already faced Kansas City three times this season, going 1-2 with a 5.00 ERA. The Royals have traditionally given him trouble, as he's 4-9 with a 6.29 ERA in 17 career starts against them.
Royals second baseman Whit Merrifield has a .441 average in 34 at-bats against Boyd, including six extra-base hits.
Detroit dropped three of four to the Chicago White Sox this week, while the Royals had a 4-4 game at Boston suspended in the 10th inning on Wednesday night.
Right-hander Jorge Lopez is expected to make a spot start for Kansas City. Left-hander Danny Duffy was placed on the 10-day IL this week, forcing manager Ned Yost to improvise.
"He's up to 75 pitches and probably our smoothest move," Yost said to MLB.com of Lopez.
Duffy, who is 5-6 with a 4.93 ERA, has a hamstring strain.
"Maybe back in the day, I would have tried to prove that I can come back quicker, I can do this faster," Duffy said to MLB.com. "But being where I'm at in my career and how long I've been around, I know pushing it doesn't do you any good."
Lopez (1-7, 6.19 ERA) pitched 3 1/3 innings at Minnesota on Saturday, allowing two runs on four hits.
He's faced the Tigers six times (three starts), posting an 0-2 record and 6.75 ERA, but the worst of those numbers came in a seven-run inning of work last year. In five appearances (two starts) this season against Detroit, Lopez is 0-1 with a 3.79 ERA.
--Field Level Media
Updated August 8, 2019