After being shut down by an inspired J.P. Howell, America's Sweethearts look to rebound this afternoon in a getaway day matchup against Tampa. With a victory, the Royals would move to 22-36, a full two games ahead of Texas for the non-worst record in the American League.
Shouldering that immense burthen is Gil Meche (3-4, 3.00 ERA), fresh off a life-affirming 7.1 IP, 1 ER, performance against the Orioles last week. After starting strong, Meche's BB to K ratio has been faltering, and he's now at 23 walks and 57 Ks, after owning a 16 to 47 ratio just three starts ago.
The Rays counter with James Shields (4-0, 3.13 ERA), a delightful young man making his 33rd career start. Shields will earn $349,000 this season, proving he's no mound-match for our Gil.