The Royals have suffered three crushing losses in a row at the hands of fellow Wild Card contenders, so it is safe to say that this is a must game, and they are all probably "must win games" from here on out. The Royals now stand at the back of the line among Wild Card contenders, tied with the Mariners at four games back of the Baltimore Orioles and Detroit Tigers for the final Wild Card spot with the Yankees and Astros in between. Did I mention this was a must-win game?
The Tigers will go with Michael Fulmer, who is your odds-on favorite for Rookie of the Year. Fulmer tossed a four-hit complete game shutout a few weeks ago, but has given up nine runs in 10 2/3 innings over his last two starts. The Royals counter with Yordano Ventura, who has a 3.03 ERA over his last ten starts, very similar to his second half of last year where he was very effective down the stretch.
The Royals are still without Lorenzo Cain, who has been out the last few days with a wrist injury. The Royals are just 12-21 this year with Cain out of the lineup. Things may look bleak right now, but if the Royals win these next two, they will still just be two games back of the Tigers with their next 14 games against teams with a losing record.
Don't forget, tonight's game is on FS1.