Tigers-Athletics Preview

The Detroit Tigers have been nearly unbeatable with David Price on the mound while the Oakland Athletics have baseball’s worst record against left-handed starters.

Price will try to help the Tigers avoid a fourth straight loss Tuesday night, with Miguel Cabrera expected back in the lineup as he tries to extend his 12-game hitting streak.

Detroit (26-20) is 8-1 in Price’s starts while Oakland (17-30) is 1-9 when facing a southpaw starter. The Athletics went into Monday’s action with a .283 slugging percentage against left-handers for baseball’s worst mark.

Price (3-1, 3.32 ERA) is in search of his first decision in four outings. He gave up three runs over 6 2-3 innings in Thursday’s 6-5, 11-inning win over Houston.

The Tigers starter is 2-2 with a 3.69 ERA in seven career outings against Oakland. Brett Lawrie has faced him the most among Oakland hitters, going 3 for 18.

Lawrie is expected to return after sitting out three straight games with tightness in his back.

Cabrera will be back for the Tigers after his first day off in Monday’s 4-0 loss in the opener of this three-game set. The superstar is hitting .413 during his streak, and leads the league with a .446 on-base percentage.

The two-time AL MVP is a .354 hitter with 25 RBIs in 21 regular-season games versus Oakland over the previous three years.

Without him, Detroit had four singles.

”We didn’t mount much of an attack at all,” manager Brad Ausmus said.

Shortstop Jose Iglesias has missed the last two games with a bruised left knee. Iglesias is tied with Anthony Gose for second on the club behind Cabrera with a .333 average.

The Tigers face journeyman Oakland starter Jesse Chavez (1-4, 2.89), whose 9.90 ERA against them is his third-highest against any opponent. Cabrera is 3 for 7 with a homer against the right-hander.

Chavez has pitched well since joining the rotation April 23, though he fell to 1-4 with a 3.41 ERA in six outings in that span by yielding three runs in six-plus innings in Thursday’s 3-0 defeat at Tampa Bay. The Athletics have totaled six runs of support in his starts.

He may be wary of a defense that committed three more errors Monday to bring baseball’s highest total to 49 – matching the third-highest total by a team through 47 games since 2000. Shortstop Marcus Semien has 17 for the most in the majors – no one else has more than 12.

Oakland is enjoying a season-high three-game win streak and manager Bob Melvin will give Ben Zobrist his first start since April 24 after the outfielder was out with a torn ligament in his left knee.

"It’s always nice to have a guy back that you feel like is very impactful for your team, and obviously we made that trade for a reason so it’s good to have him back," Melvin told MLB’s official website.

Left-hander Sean Doolittle is expected to be activated to make his season debut. The closer, an All-Star last year, was out with a shoulder injury and will be used first in non-save situations.

"Whether it’s earlier in the game, maybe he can face some lefties, which has been a little bit of an issue for us and then we can work him into that closer’s spot," Melvin said.