MLB Predictions 2012: Tampa Bay Rays vs. Detroit Tigers

The Tampa Bay Rays (3-0) and Detroit Tigers (3-0) will put their perfect records on the line Tuesday afternoon and open up a three-game series at Comerica Park

Tampa Bay Rays at Detroit Tigers 

The Detroit Tigers are coming off a three-game sweep of the Boston Red Sox

Tampa Bay heads out on the road for the first time during the young 2012 campaign this week, coming off a three-game sweep of the New York Yankees.  “It’s looking good,” commented Rays first baseman Carlos Pena in talking about the season.  He certainly contributed in a big way over the first three games, finishing 6 for 12 with two home runs and seven RBIs.  The Rays are 3-0 for just the second time in franchise history.  Tampa bay is 20-20 as a road underdog of plus-100 to plus-125 over the last two-plus years.

Rays starting pitcher Matt Moore gained some big-league experience at the end of 2011, making three appearances (one start) and posting a 1-0 record and 2.89 ERA.  He managed to strike out 15 batters in just 9 1/3 innings of work.  The left-hander isn’t going to sneak up on anybody in terms of preparation, as he came into Spring Training as the top prospect in baseball.  Moore also participated in the team’s postseason series against the Texas Rangers, throwing seven innings of two-hit ball in picking up a 9-0 victory in Game 1 of the AL division series.

Detroit managed to score 26 runs in its three-game sweep of the Boston Red Sox inside today’s venue, as third baseman Miguel Cabrera and first baseman Price Fielder have gotten off to solid starts.  The Tigers hit .345 overall in the series, with the dynamic duo combining for five home runs and 11 RBIs.  “We’ve got to get this straight, it’s not about Prince and me,” stated Cabrera about the attention the two have received.  “We’ve got 25 guys.”  The team is 156-90 at home since the beginning of the 2009 season.  Detroit is 78-54 in day games the last two-plus campaigns.

Tigers starting pitcher Rick Porcello tallied a 14-9 record and 4.75 ERA in 31 starts a year ago, which included an even 5-5 mark and 5.64 ERA in 14 home appearances.  The right-hander has registered a losing 4-7 record and 6.04 ERA in 14 career outings in April, allowing opposing batters to hit .322 against him.  Porcello will be taking on the Rays for just the third time in his career, posting an even 1-1 mark and 3.46 ERA, giving up just nine hits in 13 frames.

Bettors will likely back the Tigers due to their 4-0 record in Porcello’s last four starts as a home favorite, while the Rays are 1-7 in the last eight meetings in this series.

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