Game of the Day: Rays at Tigers

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Updated: July 6, 2014

Tampa Bay Rays at Detroit Tigers (+105, 7.5)

Logan Forsythe was struggling much like his Tampa Bay Rays in mid-June, batting .178 and spending plenty of time watching from the bench. Forsythe has batted .431 since then to help ignite the Rays, who look to finish their 11-game road trip with nine victories when they visit the Detroit Tigers on Sunday night. Runs will be hard to come by as Detroit’s Rick Porcello, coming off the first two shutouts of his career, takes the mound against David Price — the major-league strikeout leader.

The Rays have taken two of three in the series and lost only once in their last eight as Forsythe boasts three homers and eight RBIs on the road trip. The Tigers have dropped the last two after winning 12 of their previous 14 and lead the American League Central while hot-hitting Victor Martinez is day-to-day with a sore back. J.D Martinez is 8-for-19 with two homers and five RBIs in July though for the Tigers.

TV: 8 p.m. ET; ESPN

LINE HISTORY: Books opened the Tigers -104 home faves, but that line has moved to +105. The total opened 7.5.

COVERS POWER RANKINGS: Rays (+103), Tigers (-188)

INJURY REPORT: Rays: SS Yunel Escobar (Shoulder/Out), LF David DeJesus (Hand/Out) Tigers: DH Victor Martinez (Back/Doubtful)

WHAT THE CAPPERS SAY: “These teams were both considered playoff contenders when the season began, but only Detroit has lived up to expectations so far. Tampa Bay has underachieved and they must turn things around soon in order to compete in the ultra-competitive AL East division. Neither team has much home field advantage as both clubs have performed better overall on the road this season.” – Covers Experts’ Steve Merril

PITCHING MATCHUP: Rays LH David Price (7-7, 3.50 ERA) vs. Tigers RH Rick Porcello (11-4, 3.12)

After a five-game winless streak, Price has won three of his last four starts while yielding only seven runs over 31 1/3 innings. The Vanderbilt product leads the majors in strikeout-walk ratio (153-17, 9.00), but has surrendered 17 homers – among the most in the majors. Miguel Cabrera is only 1-for-14 with six strikeouts against Price, who is 4-1 with a 2.23 ERA in seven appearances (five starts) versus Detroit.

Before Porcello’s two shutouts, he blanked Cleveland over six innings on six hits in his previous start to begin a three-game winning streak. The 25-year-old New Jersey native has permitted two or fewer runs in 10 of his 16 starts in 2014 and 96 hits in 106 2/3 innings overall. Desmond Jennings is 3-for-10 in his career against Porcello, who is 2-2 in five career starts versus Tamps Bay with a 2.73 ERA.


TWEET BEAT:



TRENDS:

*Rays are 6-1 in their last 7 overall.
*Tigers are 23-7 in Porcellos last 30 starts.
*Under is 5-0 in Porcellos last 5 starts vs. Rays
*Rays are 7-16 in the last 23 meetings.

COVERS CONSENSUS: 61.9 percent of backers are taking the Tigers at +102


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