#Go with hot team, star pitcher

#Go with hot team, star pitcher

The Detroit Tigers began the season 9-24, but are approaching .500 after reeling off seven straight wins before their loss to the Kansas City Royals on Friday night. On Saturday, the Tigers will send rising star Casey Mize to the mound.

Mize’s 5-5 record does not tell the story of how he has pitched this season. He has allowed three runs or fewer in 14 consecutive starts and the team is 11-7 in his 18 starts, including 5-2 in his past seven road starts.

The Royals will look for Carlos Hernandez to improve upon the 6.57 ERA he has in his four career starts. He has pitched just 12 ¹/₃ innings in those outings, with four home runs and six walks allowed. Kansas City is 2-10 in the past 12 games he has pitched as a starter or reliever.

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The Royals have the worst bullpen ERA in the AL the past 30 days (6.38) and are allowing 1.9 home runs per nine innings in that span. That’s a big reason why, despite beating the Milwaukee Brewers twice earlier in the week, Kansas City entered this series 10-29 in its previous 39 games.

The Tigers have averaged 4.9 runs per game since the start of June, and their winning ways will continue Saturday at Kauffman Stadium.

The play: Tigers, +110.

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