The Detroit Tigers are the hottest team in baseball entering Monday’s series opener against the Toronto Blue Jays at Comerica Park
Toronto Blue Jays at Detroit Tigers
Toronto finished off a three-game road sweep of Minnesota with an 11-3 victory Sunday and was led by the outstanding offensive play of outfielder Jose Bautista. He hit a career-high tying three home runs yesterday and is proving last year’s 54 round trippers was no fluke. “I guess this is one of the hottest streaks I’ve ever had in my life,” Bautista commented. “Hopefully I can keep this going for awhile.” The Blue Jays will need it to continue based on their early season troubles against the Tigers, dropping three of four at home by hitting just .229 and scoring 14 runs. Second baseman Aaron Hill hopes to join in on the fun, going 2-for-4 in Sunday’s victory, as he’s yet to homer in 92 at-bats this season. Toronto is 15-7 in night games this season.
Blue Jays starting pitcher Kyle Drabek is an even 2-2 with a 4.81 ERA in eight starts this season, as he’s managed to issue 28 walks and register 33 strikeouts in 43 innings of work. The right-hander comes in on a two-game losing streak, allowing 12 runs and 21 hits over just 13 frames. Drabek will be making his sixth road start of the year, compiling a 1-2 record and 4.91 ERA, as opponents are hitting .300 against him. Monday night will mark his first career start versus the Tigers.
Detroit has posted a dominating 113-66 record at Comerica Park since the start of the 2009 season, ranking second-best among American League teams over that span. The Tigers pitching staff has been a major reason for that particular success, including this season by compiling a 2.69 ERA in its last 13 home games. Offensively, catcher Victor Martinez enters with a 13-game hitting streak, while going 14 for 28 and knocking in 14 runs during the club’s season-high seven-game winning streak. “We’re not worried about winning streaks or anything like that,” said catcher Alex Avila. “It’s just trying to play a consistent baseball game.”
Tigers starting pitcher Max Scherzer is a perfect 6-0 with a 3.20 ERA heading into his ninth start of the season, as the club has proven victorious in seven of his outings. The right-hander will be facing the Blue Jays for a second consecutive game, posting a 10-5 road win on May 9, giving up two runs and five hits over five frames. Scherzer has been downright dominating at Comerica Park, entering with a perfect 3-0 mark and 0.96 ERA, as he’s yet to allow a home run at home in 28 innings.
Bettors will likely back the Tigers due to their 5-0 mark in Scherzer’s last five home games, while the Blue Jays are 1-4 in the last five meetings