The Detroit Tigers are one of the favorites to win the World Series, and currently sit atop the AL Central. That’s a little misleading though. The AL Central has proven to be the worst division in baseball so far. They’re the only division without a team with double digit wins, and the Tigers are only +1 in run differential. Far from the numbers expected of a champion. But it’s early, and the Tigers have a chance to build on their division lead with the Chicago White Sox next on the Detroit Tigers schedule.
Chicago started out better than expected with a 9-10 record, and an offense that’s leading the majors in runs scored. But they’ve come back to earth a little, losing four of their last five, and averaging two runs a game over the losses. Ticket prices certainly paint the picture of a dull matchup. Tigers tickets are 78 percent lower than the season average at Comerica Park. The get-in price is just $3 for all four games.
4/21/14 7:08PM (EST) CHW John Danks vs DET Anibal Sanchez | Avg. Price: $23 | Get-in Price: $3
A former 15-game winner, John Danks has struggled to be an effective starter for the White Sox the last several years. He’s been solid so far this year, though. The White Sox have been within a run of the lead whenever Danks has been on the mound this season. Anibal Sanchez had an incredible season for the Tigers last year. He was an integral part of the World Series projections to start the season, but hasn’t exactly lived up to those projections. While his numbers are solid, he’s struggled to make it past the fifth inning.
4/22/14 7:08PM (EST) CHW Chris Sale vs. DET Justin Verlander | Avg. Price: $23 | Get-in Price: $3
Even a strong pitching matchup won’t get the price to change much for this series. Chris Sale has been great for the White Sox throughout his career, and has improved in each of his first four seasons. This season his numbers have improved again, and hitters are only batting .168 against him. Part of that is due to an unsustainably low BABIP of .227, but his numbers are improved across the board. Even if he just replicates his numbers from last season, he’ll be one of the better pitchers in baseball. Opposing him is a guy who has arguably been the best pitcher in baseball. Justin Verlander had an uncharacteristically bad year last year, his worst since 2008. The numbers? A still stellar 3.46 ERA, 1.31 WHIP, and 4.6 WAR. Verlander is one of the few pitchers in MLB history to win an MVP award, and has been incredible to start the season.
4/23/14 7:08PM (EST) CHW Andre Rienzo vs. DET Drew Smyly | Avg. Price: $29 | Get-in Price: $3
Andre Rienzo is only in his second season in the league. He’s the likely starter Wednesday to fill in for Felipe Paulino. Rienzo was solid in 10 starts last season, but has only pitched one inning so far this year in relief. He loaded the bases before inducing a popup to end the inning. Drew Smyly has been quite a find for Detroit. He was surprisingly effective his rookie year in 2012, until he was supplanted in the rotation by Anibal Sanchez. Last season he was a reliever for the Tigers, and improved his numbers across the board. This season he’s back in the rotation. He started the season as a long reliever to get stretched out. While he pitched well in relief, he was chased after just three innings in his first start.
4/24/14 1:08PM (EST) CHW Jose Quintana vs. DET Max Scherzer | Avg. Price: $32 | Get-in Price: $3
Thursday will be the most expensive game of the series, which is still 75 percent below the season average for Tigers tickets. On the mound the White Sox will feature another young pitcher. Jose Quintana is in his third season as a starter, and pitched 200 innings with a WAR of 5.4 last year. He got mashed by the Texas Rangers in his last start, but has otherwise had quality outings each time up. For the Tigers they send out the reigning Cy Young award winner, Max Scherzer. Scherzer has picked up right where he left off last year sporting a 2.33 ERA and a sub-1 WHIP.