Detroit Tigers (36-40) vs. Cleveland Indians (41-33)
Where and when: Progressive Field, Cleveland, Ohio, Sunday, 1:10 pm EST
The finale of a 3-game set against the reeling Detroit Tigers and the Cleveland Indians will take place at Progressive Field in Cleveland, Ohio, on Sunday afternoon at 1:10 pm EST. The Indians continue to occupy the top spot within the AL Central while the Tigers are in the 2nd place slot. In game 1 of this series, the Indians exploded for 10 runs in a 10-0 shutout on 6-22-2018. Shane Bieber (3-0) pitched up the win as he pitched 4 innings while allowing no runs on 4 hits, 1 walk, and 9 strikeouts with an ERA of 2.45 while Edwin Encarnacion and Yonder Alonso had 2 hits apiece with a combined 7 RBI’s for Cleveland. Mike Fiers (5-4) took the loss for the Tigers as he allowed 4 runs on 4 hits, 2 homers, 3 walks, and 4 strikeouts with an ERA of 4.29 in 5 innings of work. Nick Castellanos, JaCoby Jones, and James McCann were each 1-3 for the game. The Indians cashed in on the money line in this game as heavy favorites (-240) while the over was the play in that the total was set at 9.5 runs for the game.
The Detroit Tigers come into this matchup losers of 3 of their last 5 games to where the O/U was 3-2. Currently, the Tigers are averaging 4.12 runs per game (23rd) with a team batting average of .250 (12th), 62 homers (28th), along with 40 stolen bases (12th). Their pitching staff possesses an ERA of 4.35 (22nd) with 573 strikeouts (26th), along with 27 quality starts on the year (26th).
The Cleveland Indians come into this matchup winners of their last 5 games to where the O/U was 3-2. Currently, the Indians are averaging 4.97 runs per game (4th) with a team batting average of .253 (8th), 105 homers (3rd), along with 52 stolen bases (5th). Their pitching staff possesses an ERA of 3.92 (14th) with 679 strikeouts (7th), along with 48 quality starts on the year (2nd).
Boyd To Avoid 2nd Straight Loss
Matthew Boyd (4-5) will get the start for the Tigers in the finale looking to end a 3-game losing skid for his team while also improving upon a loss in his last outing to where he pitched only 4 innings while allowing 5 runs on 6 hits in a 9-5 road loss to the Cincinnati Reds on 6-19-2018. In his last outing versus the Indians, the pitched 7 innings while allowing 1 run on 3 hits in a 2-1 road loss at Progressive Field on 4-10-2018. Boyd has been credited with 13 runs on 19 hits in his last 4 starts while the over has been the play in 3 of his last 5 games. The Tigers are 4-1 when Boyd is on the mound.
Michael Brantley (.429 BA on 7 AB), Yan Gomes (.250 BA on 8 AB), Brandon Guyer (.273 BA on 11 AB), and Francisco Lindor (.429 BA on 14 AB) have had great at bats against Boyd in the past; However, Edwin Encarnacion (.167 BA on 18 AB), Jason Kipnis (0-4), Tyler Naquin (0-2), Roberto Perez (0-1), and Jose Ramirez (.182 BA on 11 AB) have not fared as well against the left-hander in the past.
Plutko Seeking 4th win in 5th Start
Adam Plutko (3-1) will come to the mound once again for the Indians only this time in start status, once again, looking to build from his solid streak of pitching lately. in his last outing, he pitched 2 innings while allowing 1 run on 2 hits in a 9-3 loss to the Twins in relief status, on 6-16-2018. In his last outing versus the Tigers, it did not go well at all as he pitched 2 innings while allowing 3 runs on 3 hits in relief in a 12-0 road loss on 9-27-2017. While Plutko has been effective for Cleveland’s pitching staff, he has allowed 10 earned runs in his last 2 starts while the over has been the play in 5 of his 7 appearances on the mound. Finally, the Indians are just 3-4 when Plutko is on the mound.
The right-hander does not have much experience against the Tiger lineup, however, Jose Iglesias (0-1), Victor Martinez (0-1), and James McCann (0-2) has struggled to figure out Boyd in their respective careers.
- The Tigers are 5-13 in last 18 Sunday games
- The Tigers are 19-42 in last 61 road games
- The Under is 10-3 in Tigers last 13 road games
- The Indians are 44-17 in last 61 home games
- The Indians are 21-6 in last 27 games against the Tigers in Cleveland
- The Over is 7-2 in Indians last 9 Sunday games
With the way in which the Indians’ lineup has had their way against Boyd in the past coupled with the way in which the Cleveland offense has heated up lately (7.2 runs per game in last 5 outings), I would say that the Indians will indeed win the finale in grand fashion. After Boyd’s terrible outing in his last start, I am sure that he will come in with focus in which to get a win, however, I expect the Indians experienced lineup to pummel him in the end in what will seemingly be a blow-out win for Cleveland that will certainly carryover into their next series.