Royals-Tigers game postponed by rain

Now the series between the Royals and Tigers takes on a new

level of intrigue.

Wade Davis against Max Scherzer on Wednesday. James Shields

against Justin Verlander on Thursday.

Those pitching matchups came about because Kansas City and

Detroit were rained out Tuesday night. That was supposed to be the

opener of a three-game series between the up-and-coming Royals and

the defending AL Central champions from Detroit.

There was no makeup date announced, so the teams will instead

play only two games this week. Both bumped their Tuesday starters

to Wednesday – Davis for Kansas City and Scherzer for Detroit. The

Royals will then skip Luis Mendoza in the rotation, leaving Shields

to pitch Thursday. Verlander will take the mound that day, too,

after originally being scheduled for Wednesday.

The rainout gave Kansas City its fifth day off in nine days. The

Royals had a game at Boston on Friday postponed because of the

manhunt for a suspect in the Boston Marathon bombings.

The Royals also had a scheduled day off Monday, and then the

postponement in Detroit.

”It feels almost like getting at-bats for the first time in

spring again,” Kansas City designated hitter Billy Butler said.

”Except these ones count. I’m sure in their own respect it’s

affecting the pitchers, too.”

Butler homered Sunday in the second game of a doubleheader

against Boston – and the Royals haven’t played since.

”The more at-bats you get, the more comfortable you are, and

we’re not getting them at all,” he said.

Kansas City is 10-7 and hoping to unseat the Tigers atop the

division. The Royals sent prospect Wil Myers to Tampa Bay in the

offseason, acquiring Shields and Davis from the Rays. So far,

Shields is 1-2 with a 3.00 ERA, and Davis is 2-0 with a 2.25


”Our pitching’s been much improved, our defense has been very,

very solid,” Royals manager Ned Yost said. ”Offensively, we still

haven’t hit our stride, but are scoring enough runs to win

ballgames. I like our energy.”

Davis’ performance is particularly encouraging for the Royals.

He is making the transition back to being a starter after pitching

in relief last year for Tampa Bay.

”I’ve been very impressed,” Yost said. ”That’s why we got him

– because we knew he’d be able to do that.”

Detroit has lost four straight, falling to 9-9. Yost didn’t want

to put too much emphasis on this early series.

”We just came off a big series in Boston, one of the hottest

teams in baseball,” he said. ”We played the Atlanta Braves, one

of the hottest teams in baseball – stopped streaks on both of those

teams. I think we’ve got enough confidence in ourselves. We come in

feeling good.

”We know it’s a long year. We know we’ve got a lot of games,

but we’ve got confidence in each other. Offense has confidence in

the pitching, the pitching has confidence in the defense and the

offense. It’s just a good combination.”