Though the Detroit Tigers were unable to begin their lengthy homestand successfully, they received a boost from their latest outing at Comerica Park.
Now that the Tigers have snapped their four-game losing streak, they will try to add to the Kansas City Royals’ recent troubles as the teams continue their three-game series on Saturday.
Detroit (65-69) dropped the final contest of its 4-2 road trip, then endured a three-game sweep by Cleveland to begin its 10-game homestand.
The Tigers ended the skid on Friday with a 6-3 victory over the Royals to open this series.
“There’s not a lot of momentum in baseball,” manager Jim Leyland told the Tigers’ official Web site. “You’re only as good as your next day’s pitcher. That’s just the way it works.”
Kansas City, meanwhile, is 6-19 in August and has lost six straight road games.
“Not enough production. Not enough two-out hits, that’s a big part of it,” Royals manager Trey Hillman said.
Kansas City has dropped 11 of 12 overall, and the lone win in that stretch was a 7-3 home victory over Detroit on Sunday.
Rogers (9-11, 5.09 ERA) - 1-5 with a 7.34 ERA over his last six starts - gave up seven runs, eight hits and four walks over six innings in that loss to Kansas City. He totaled 107 pitches - four fewer than his season high.
“Just the fact that we saw more pitches and scored more pitches up made a big difference with a pitcher like Kenny,” Royals second baseman Alberto Callaspo told his team’s official Web site.
That game marked the season debut for Duckworth (1-0, 5.40), as he allowed three runs and seven hits with four walks in five innings. He had been with Triple-A Omaha before being called up.
“I was able to kind of calm down a little bit and keep us there, make some pitches so they didn’t get anything too out of hand,” Duckworth said after his first major league win as a starter since June 24, 2006.
While Duckworth is 2-2 with a 3.63 ERA in five career games versus the Tigers, Rogers is 1-3 with a 6.55 ERA in four starts versus the Royals this season. The left-hander is 0-4 with a 6.29 ERA in five outings against them at Comerica Park.
Billy Butler is a career .400 hitter (6-for-15) against Rogers, and he’s hit .421 (8-for-19) in his last five games overall.
Kansas City’s Mark Teahen, who homered Friday, has batted .326 (28-for-86) in his last 22 contests versus the Tigers.
The Tigers hope Miguel Cabrera will be in the lineup after leaving Friday’s game in the sixth inning with a mild left pectoral strain. He is listed as day-to-day, but said after the game he might be able to play Saturday.
Cabrera is 3-for-20 (.150) without an RBI in his last five games.