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Following a sweep of the Toronto Blue Jays, the Tigers will shift their focus to a team very much in the thick of the AL Wild Card race. The Los Angeles Angels are 8 games back of the Texas Rangers for the AL West division lead, so the Wild Card is seeming like the only option for them. Currently, 4 teams are tied for the last 2 Wild Card spots in the American League; Baltimore, Tampa Bay, Detroit, and Oakland. The Angels are 2.5 games back, so a series win against the Tigers this weekend at Comerica Park would be a huge confidence boost. The Tigers on the other hand, are just a game and a half back of the White Sox for the AL Central.
Series Schedule & Pitching Match ups:
Friday, August 24, 7:05 PM: Zack Greinke (1-2, 6.19 ERA) vs. Rick Porcello (9-8, 4.67 ERA) — Fox Sports Detroit & MLB Network
Saturday, August 25, 7:05 PM: Dan Haren (8-10, 4.90 ERA) vs. Drew Smyly (4-3, 4.42 ERA) — Fox Sports Detroit & MLB Network
Sunday, August 26, 1:05 PM: Ervin Santana (7-10, 5.46 ERA) vs. Max Scherzer (13-6, 4.27 ERA) — Fox Sports Detroit & TBS
Who To Watch For:
Los Angeles: For the Angels, everything runs through rookie phenom Mike Trout. He’s an MVP candidate and having one of the best seasons by a rookie in major league history. His .345 average combined with 24 home runs makes him a huge threat at the plate. Add into the mix his 41 stolen bases and outstanding outfield defense and he’s a threat all around the field. Keep an eye on him every time he’s out there.
Detroit: The Tigers got a bit of a scare Thursday afternoon when Miguel Cabrera left the game early with right ankle soreness. Cabrera bounced a foul ball off that ankle earlier in the month and it hasn’t felt right since. Not only will the Tigers need him to bounce back from this “injury”, but they’ll need him to produce. Cabrera is hitless in 9 at-bats over his last 4 games which is tied for his 3rd-longest hitless game streak of career. So far this season, he’s been the teams MVP, batting .326 with 31 long balls and 105 RBI.
Around the AL Central:
While we will surely be watching the Tigers and Angels this weekend at Comerica Park, we’ll also keep an eye on the other teams around the division, most notably the Chicago White Sox. The south siders welcome the Seattle Mariners to town for a 3-game series. Meanwhile, the Royals are in Boston to take on the Red Sox, the Twins are in Texas to face the Rangers, and the Indians host the New York Yankees.
Following this weekends series with the Angels, the Tigers will hit the road for a 3-game series with the Kansas City Royals starting Tuesday night. Justin Verlander will get the call in the series opener for Detroit.
As always, keep up with live scoring updates, lineups and Tigers news on Facebook ( www.facebook.com/detroitsportsnation ) , and on Twitter ( @detsportsnation )
Have a great weekend, Detroit!