LEADING OFF: Royals try to stay perfect; Verlander tests arm
A look at what’s happening all around the major leagues today:
AMERICAN LEAGUE ROYALTY
Kansas City, at 7-0 the only unbeaten team in the major leagues, resumes its series at Minnesota after a one-day break when Edinson Volquez takes the mound against the Twins. The best start in Royals history was 9-0 in 2003. Kansas City learned Tuesday that right fielder Alex Rios has a broken bone in his left hand, the result of being hit by a pitch Monday from Twins rookie J.R. Graham. Lorenzo Cain is expected to shift to right field, with Jarrod Dyson taking over in center for Cain.
MAKING HIS WAY BACK
Detroit’s Justin Verlander, the 2011 AL MVP and Cy Young Award winner, is to pitch a simulated game Wednesday of at least four innings and 60 pitches. Tigers manager Brad Ausmus hopes the right-hander throws 75 pitches, which could put him in line to be activated. Sidelined by a right triceps strain, Verlander is on the disabled list for the first time in his major league career.
Mets captain David Wright will have an MRI on his pulled right hamstring and hopes it’s not too severe. Wright was injured while stealing second base Tuesday night and acknowledged it’s possible he’s headed to the disabled list. Eric Campbell is likely to be called up from Triple-A Las Vegas to provide insurance at third base. New York outfielder Michael Cuddyer hopes to be back in the lineup after leaving Tuesday night’s game when he was hit by a pitch on the left hand. X-rays were negative.
Blue Jays left-hander Mark Buehrle, who faces Tampa Bay on Wednesday, earned his 200th win against Baltimore last week. Tampa Bay’s starting staff, meanwhile, has combined for 102 career wins. Seven current Rays pitchers weren’t even teenagers when Buehrle got his first big league win on July 19, 2000.