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Detroit Tigers vs. Kansas City Royals Pick, Odds, Prediction 3/31/14

Kansas City Royals (0-0) at Detroit Tigers (0-0)

MLB Baseball: Monday, March 31, 2014 at 1:08 pm (Comerica Park)

James Shields (R) (0-0) (0.00) vs. Justin Verlander (R) (0-0) (0.00)

The Line: Detroit Tigers -155 / Kansas City Royals +145 --- Over/Under: 7 See the Latest Odds

TV: FS-Detroit, FS-Kansas City

The Detroit Tigers and the Kansas City Royals meet on Monday as they open their 2014 MLB seasons in a battle of AL Central contenders.

The Detroit Tigers came up a series short of the making the World Series last season losing to the Boston Red Sox in the ALCS. While Prince Fielder is gone there is plenty of talent remaining for the Tigers as they look to take that next step. Miguel Cabrera is fresh off of signing a 10-year 292 millioin dollar contract following back-to back MVP seasons, Victor Martinez is healthy and in the DH spot, and Ian Kinsler comes over from Texas to take over second base, Though Max Scherzer won the Cy Young Award last season Justin Verlander is still the man and the opening day starter as Joe Nathan takes over the closer spot in the bullpen. The Tigers have the talent to make to the World Series but the big impact could be the retirement of Jim Leyland who is replaced by Brad Ausmus.

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Detroit Tigers vs. Kansas City Royals Pick, Odds, Prediction 3/31/14

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The Kansas City Royals have been a team that Is a year away for several years running and this is the year they hope to take it to the next level. The Royals have had a roster of raw talent but now they are experienced as well. Billy Butler is one of the better hitters in the game, Salvador Perez gets it done with his bat and his glove, and Norichika Aoki was brought in from Milwaukee to stir the pot. James Shields gets the opening day start for KC and while his record didn’t always show it he brought all of his best stuff with him from Tampa Bay. Greg Holland is the closer and the Royals hope to give hime plenty of work.

Detroit is 41-19 in game one of a series, 8-3 against the AL Central, and 2-11 in Verlander’s last 13 starts. Kansas City is 19-41 following and off day, 4-1 against the AL Central, and 18-5 in Shields’ last 23 starts. Detroit is 0-4 in the last four times Verlander has started against Shields.

We aren’t going to see prices like this on Shields too often and it is well worth taking the chance that he comes through here as Verlander is traditionally a slow starter and coming off of a poor year.

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