Tigers' Price in showdown with King Felix
The Sports Xchange
MLB Team Report - Detroit Tigers - INSIDE PITCH
David Price doesn't have a lot of room for error in his first home start with the Detroit Tigers.
Price, who was acquired from Tampa Bay on July 31 in a blockbuster three-team deal, will oppose the heavy favorite for the American League Cy Young Award, Seattle's Felix Hernandez, in the second game of a three-game series on Saturday. Hernandez is riding a major-league record streak of 16 consecutive starts of at least seven innings pitched while allowing two earned runs or less.
"That's phenomenal," Price said Friday of Hernandez's streak.
"Facing a guy like Felix, you have to be right that day. If you give up three runs in seven or eight innings, you're probably going to lose. You can't give up crooked numbers. You've got to come ready and that's what I'll be tomorrow."
Price, who is 11-8 with a 3.21 ERA, has two no-decisions since the trade. He pitched 8 2/3 innings at Yankee Stadium in his Tigers debut, allowing three earned runs and striking out 10. He pitched at Toronto in his last start on Sunday, giving up four runs in six innings with six strikeouts.
"I'm anxious to see what it feels like to make a home start in front of these fans," he said. "I'm always excited to be living my dream. I'm a little bit nervous before every game and I don't think it will be any different tomorrow."
The acquisition of Price looks even more essential to the Tigers' playoff push in light of recent developments. Anibal Sanchez went on the disabled list with a major right pectoralis strain and isn't expected to return until next month. Justin Verlander is dealing with shoulder soreness and will skip at least one start. Their replacements were rookies called up from Triple A, Robbie Ray and Buck Farmer.
Price has found the mood in the Tigers clubhouse to be lighthearted despite the team's recent struggles.
"They're laid back and fun to be around and to me, that's the key," he said. "If you can have fun, it never turns into a job. That's what you want to stay away from. You want to continue to treat the game the way you did when we were kids and fell in love with it."
MLB Team Report - Detroit Tigers - NOTES, QUOTES
STREAK: Lost one
NEXT: Mariners (RHP Felix Hernandez, 12-3, 1.95 ERA) at Tigers (LHP David Price, 11-8, 3.21 ERA)
--RHP Rick Porcello had one of his worst starts of the season on Friday, allowing six runs -- five earned -- on 10 hits in six innings. Porcello elevated too many pitches and couldn't make the in-game adjustments to change his fortunes. He made a rare relief appearance in the 19-inning game at Toronto on Sunday, tossing two-plus innings, but said that had nothing to do with his poor performance on Friday. "I've got a lot of adjustments to make," he said. "I look forward to my next start."
--1B Miguel Cabrera doubled in his first two at-bats on Friday, giving him an American League-leading 39 for the season. He has nine games with at least two extra-base hits. He smacked his first double since July 19 in his last at-bat on Thursday. Cabrera also walked and scored a run against Seattle.