Jason Vargas will take the mound for Kansas City. The southpaw has a shiny 2.40 ERA through six starts this year, but his 4.22 xFIP and 4.43 SIERA are more in line with his career values, suggesting some earned run regression is coming. It's been nice to see Vargas' pitch well, but please don't think he has magically morphed into a frontline starter.
Justin Verlander will start the game for Detroit. Tigers fans' are probably happy to see his 2.48 after a "down" year for the right-hander, but Verlander's 18.2% K% is a bit of a red flag. During Verlander's Cy Young seasons, his K% sat at 25% and his career average is 22.7%. It's still early in the season and Verlander could start missing more bats, but it's something to pay attention too.
Ned Yost is rocking the standard lineup against a right-handed pitcher today. Joel Goldberg of FSKC brings us the Royals batting order:
#Royals vs RHP Verlander: Aoki 9, Infante 4, Hosmer 3, Butler DH, Gordon 7, Perez 2, Moose 5, Escobar 6, Dyson 8, Vargas 1— Joel Goldberg (@goldbergkc) May 4, 2014
Alex Avila is back behind the plate for Detroit this afternoon, and Andrew Romine will start the game at shortstop. The Tigers official Twitter feed brings us their lineup:
#Tigers lineup: Davis LF Kinsler 2B Cabrera 1B V. Martinez DH Hunter RF Jackson CF Castellanos 3B Avila C Romine SS Verlander P— Detroit Tigers (@tigers) May 4, 2014
Aaron Brooks, we hardly knew ye (Welcome back Tim Collins).
Song of the Day: Alter Bridge - Fortress
I saw Alter Bridge at the Midland on Friday night, and they were awesome. Myles Kennedy is an impressive vocalist, and Mark Tremonti writes quality rock music. Fortress is a solid album and the title track is one of the best offerings on the CD.