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Game LVII: Royals v. Tigers

Saying farewell to a Royals legend

Kansas City Royals’ Alex Gordon follows through on a three-R Photo by John Sleezer/Kansas City Star/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

I road the bus to school back in 2007. I got off the bus on a sunny afternoon day in April, sprinting inside and down the stairs into my basement. I fired up the old school big screen TV we had. Not a flat screen TV, but one of those box big screen TVs that took up pretty much the entire basement.

Once the TV was glowing, I flipped to the Royals game. It was Opening Day. The game started at 3:10 PM, so I hadn’t missed a whole lot. I watched the Royals beat a Red Sox team that would go on to win the World Series that year. But I wasn’t as concerned with the outcome.

I didn’t sprint inside to watch the Royals play the Red Sox. I sprinted inside to watch Alex Gordon. And I vividly remember the anxiety I felt that day, wondering if the savior of my beloved Royals would be the savior he was meant to be or a bust.

It didn’t look the way that Kansas City thought it would look, but he lived up to the hype. And today, the three-time All-Star, eight-time Gold Glove award winner, two-time pennant winner, and World Series champion is calling it a career.

He’ll finish his career with four games against the Tigers, a series that will begin and end with Kris Bubic and Brady Singer on the mound, two players looking to usher in the future of Royals playoff baseball.

Kansas City will wrap up a bizarre season that saw its two longest losing streaks (five and seven games) be immediately followed by its two longest winning streaks (four and six games). It also saw them outscore

This season has also seen Salvador Perez put up pretty unprecedented numbers for a player who walks as little as Sal does. As long as the voters can look past his stint on the IL, Perez is a chalk pick for his second career Silver Slugger.

Despite the weirdness of this season, Kansas City will avoid the worst three-season stretch in team history (.362% winning percentage, 2004-06), even if they lose all four games. They enter tonight with a much improved .411 winning percentage.

The Tigers have a struggling Michael Fulmer on the mound, who has given up nine runs across his last eight innings. As noted, the Royals will send Kris Bubic to the mound, who has been red hot in his last four starts, posting a 1.99 ERA in 22.2 innings pitched, striking out 25 in the process.

Here are you lineups for this evening’s contest: