MLB News Update: American League Central Update as of 8/15/13
As of August 15, 2013
With Cleveland’s recent struggles the Detroit Tigers continue to increase their lead in the American League Central.
Miguel Cabrera continues to look like an MVP award is in his sights this year and it’s amazing how he just never stops hitting. Cabrera has now hit six home runs in the last eight days to give him 38 on the season. Not only is he a power machine, driving in 114 runs, but he sports a .360 average to go with it. It’s almost unfortunate that Chris Davis is leading in home runs because watching Cabrera win back-to-back Triple Crowns would have been something else. Justin Verlander looked like he had gotten back on track but then allowed four earned runs in a loss to the Yankees on Sunday. Max Scherzer is 17-1 on the year and has given up more than three earned runs in a start just once since the middle of May. Anibal Sanchez has been just as good this year despite not having as good a record. Detroit should win the division and right now a lot of baseball fans are fantasizing about a potential Tigers-Dodgers World Series in the fall. The Tigers open up a five game series with the surging Kansas City Royals on Thursday in what should be a fun weekend of games.
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Cleveland is just 3-7 over their last 10 games and are now six games back of the Tigers. After getting swept by the Tigers last week they lost two of three to the Angels and lost the opener of their series with Minnesota before rallying the next two nights. They trailed the Twins 4-0 on Wednesday before eventually winning 9-8 in 12 innings. Jason Kipnis went 3-for-5 and Michael Brantley and Jason Giambi each had three RBI’s in the game. Carlos Carrasco got the start and allowed four earned runs in 4 1/3 innings to drop his record to 0-4 on the season. His ERA is close to eight on the year. The Indians have an off day on Thursday before traveling to Oakland where they’ll look to take advantage of a struggling Athletics ball club.
Kansas City is now just 1 ½ games behind the Indians for second place in the division and their solid stretch of baseball has them back within 4.5 games of the final Wild Card berth. Wednesday afternoon’s 5-2 loss to the Miami Marlins was a tough pill to swallow for the Royals who held a 2-1 lead heading into the seventh before watching their bullpen ruin another great Ervin Santana outing. With how well they’ve been playing it’s extremely disappointing to lose two of three at home to a team like the Marlins. The schedule gets much harder now and this is going to be a serious test for them this weekend when they travel to Detroit. It really could make or break their season and it gives them a great opportunity to not only make up ground in the Wild Card race but to close in on the division. Jeremy Guthrie and Anibal Sanchez meet on Thursday, James Shields opposes Justin Verlander in the day game of a double header tomorrow, Danny Duff and Jose Alvarez go at it in the night cap, Wade Davis and Doug Fister go at it on Saturday, with Bruce Chen and Max Scherzer finishing things off on Sunday afternoon.
The Twins open up a four game set with the Chicago White Sox on Thursday night, a team they’ve beaten nine out of the 12 times they’ve met this season. The White Sox have won six of their last 10 games but they’ll be back on the road where they’re a miserable 18-41 on the season. These two clubs met last weekend in Chicago with the Twins taking three of four. This should be a good opportunity for the Twins to pick up some wins because aside from having to face Chris Sale they should have the edge in all of this weekend’s pitching match ups. These two teams are going to have to play spoiler throughout the rest of the season because this season has been over for a while for both of them.