Jun 7, 2014; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Justin Verlander (right) has looked like a deer in the headlights at times this season. If he plans to turn his season around he will have to do it against the Kansas City Royals. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Detroit Tigers V Kansas City Royals Series Preview, Start Time

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Listen carefully. Yes those are the footsteps of the Kansas City Royals climbing up the AL Central ladder. After stretching their lead to 7 games in late May the last thing Tiger fans thought they would have to worry about was a team in the Central challenging for the division lead.

But that is exactly what has happened.

The Royals, who are on a 7 game win streak, roll into Detroit for a 4 game series looking to take the lead in the AL Central Division. Kansas City is just 1.5 games back and could take the lead by winning 3 of 4.

It will be a tough task though as Detroit is playing better baseball as of late.  They defeated the Twins in walk-off fashion on Sunday afternoon to take the series and win 5 of their last 10.  The Tigers are looking to build on that momentum and hold of the Royals while maintaining their division lead.

Players To Watch

Royals backstop, Salvador Perez is on track to becoming one of the top three catchers in the game.  Perez is batting .278 with 7 home runs while playing stellar defense.  Perez could be a key player against the Tigers not only with his bat but by slowing the running game.

The Royals have a solid young rotation of hurlers led by up and comer Danny Duffy.  Duffy went from long relief to starter and has flourished.  The KC southpaw is holding opponents to just a.198 batting average.

Justin Verlander has been decidedly below average this season.  Over his last three starts he is 1-2 with a 6.64 ERA leading fans to assume he is on the downside of his career. If JV is going to turn it around this season it has to start against the Royals.

The Detroit Tigers will send their top three pitchers to the mound against the Royals.  However Detroit will miss Kansas City Royals Ace “Big Game” James Shields spot in the rotation.

Detroit Tigers V Kansas City Royals Probable Pitchers

Monday – 7:08 pm

Justin Verlander V Jason Vargas

Tuesday – 7:08 pm

Max Scherzer V Yordano Ventura

Wednesday – 1:08 pm

Drew Smyly V Jeremy Guthrie

Thursday – 1:08 pm

Anibal Sanchez V Danny Duffy

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Tags: Danny Duffy Detroit Tigers Justin Verlander Salvador Perez

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