Download the App Image

Tuesday MLB Odds & Picks: Royals vs. Tigers Preview (Sept. 15)

Tuesday MLB Odds & Picks: Royals vs. Tigers Preview (Sept. 15) article feature image

David Banks/Getty Images. Pictured: Danny Duffy

Royals vs. Tigers Odds

Royals Odds -105 [Bet Now]
Tigers Sox Odds -115 [Bet Now]
Over/Under 9 (-108/-113) [Bet Now]
First Pitch Tuesday, 7:10 p.m. ET

Odds as of Tuesday morning and via DraftKings. Get up to a $250 deposit match at BetRivers today or see more offers and reviews for the best online sportsbooks.

Advanced Stats Glossary

FIP or Fielding Independent Pitching measures what a pitcher’s ERA would look like if the pitcher experienced league-average defense and luck. xFIP  is a regressed version of FIP that adjusts or “normalizes’ the home run component based on park factors.

wRC+ or Weighted Runs Created Plus takes the statistic Runs Created and adjusts that number to account for critical external factors — like ballpark or era. It’s adjusted, so a wRC+ of 100 is league average, and 150 would be 50 percent above league average.

wOBA or Weighted On-Base Average is a catch-all hitting metric with more predictive value than on-base percentage. An average MLB hitter can be expected to post a .320 wOBA. xwOBA is a regressed version of wOBA that accounts for variables like park factors.

BaseRuns is a formula designed to estimate how many runs a team would be expected to score (or allow) given their underlying offensive (or defensive) performance. In other words, BaseRuns is a context-neutral run estimator used to evaluate teams. Major League average for an individual batter per game is 0.50 BaseRuns and a for a pitcher its 0.52 BaseRuns per inning.

Kansas City Royals

The Royals offense has been below average this season, putting up a .311 wOBA and 91 wRC+. However, they’ve been on fire over the past week, scoring 44 runs and accumulating the second best wOBA in MLB.

Much of the Royals struggles this season have come versus righties, as they rank 23rd in terms of wOBA. However, Kansas City has had a lot of success against lefties this year.

The Royals are hitting for a .276 average and have accumulated a .329 wOBA against lefties, which ranks in the top 10 of MLB. They’ll have a fantastic matchup against Matthew Boyd, who has been one of the worst left-handed pitchers in baseball this year.

Royals Probable Starter

Danny Duffy, LHP

Projected & Actual Stats (via Fangraphs)

Pitch Arsenal (via Baseball Savant)

Danny Duffy has been so-so in 2020. His xFIP is a bit of a concern right now as it’s well above 5.0 right now, but the problems seem to lie with his sinker.

Duffy is predominately a fastball/slider pitcher. He used to use his high velocity on his fastball to overpower hitters, but his velocity has gone way down over the years. Now he’s got to be on point with his location, along with utilizing his secondary pitches more.

So far in 2020, he’s effective with every pitch, except for his sinker. That pitch is allowing a .417 average to opponents, while the rest of his pitches combined are only allowing a .208 average. If he scraps the sinker and sticks to his fastball-slider combination, he could be very effective against a Tigers lineup that struggles against sliders.

The Tigers have mashed left-handed pitching so far in 2020, so Duffy will have to be at his best tonight.

Detroit Tigers

Detroit’s offense has been below average this season, ranking 24th in MLB in terms of wOBA. They’ve been especially bad over the past two weeks, accumulating a .283 wOBA and 75 wRC+, which ranks 29th in MLB over that time span.

The Tigers have been somewhat one-dimensional this season, as they are crushing fastballs (13.5 weighted fastball runs) but are struggling against every other pitch type. Duffy is mainly a fastball pitcher, so the Tigers have a good matchup to get back on track.

Tigers Probable Starter

Matthew Boyd, LHP

Projected & Actual Stats (via Fangraphs)

Pitch Arsenal (via Baseball Savant)

Matthew Boyd has been awful so far in 2020, accumulating a 7.63 ERA and 4.62 xFIP through nine starts. For Boyd this season it’s been strikeout or nothing, as despite his alarming numbers, he’s accumulated a 10.10 K/9 rate. He’s been really struggling with his fastball and slider, allowing a .310 average to opponents on both pitches. He’s also had major issues keeping the ball in the yard, as his HR/9 is all the way up at 2.43.

He’ll have a tough matchup on Tuesday against a Royals lineup that has been hitting the ball well as of late.


The Royals bullpen has been average so far this season, accumulating a 4.38 ERA an a 4.70 xFIP as a group. Both of which rank in the top half of MLB. Detroit’s bullpen has been below average this season, ranking in the bottom 10 of MLB, with a 6.01 ERA and 4.91 xFIP. So, the Royals will have a slight advantage in bullpen matchup tonight.

Projections and Pick

Even though both teams hit lefties well, I think Duffy has the advantage over Boyd on the mound. Also, the with Royals offense going up against a struggling Boyd creates a lot of value for Kansas City.

Therefore, I am going to back the Royals at +105 at BetMGM — the best line available — and would bet it up to -120. Most of the market is at -105 right now.

Pick: Royals +105

[Bet now at BetMGM and get an INSTANT $500 deposit match.]

How would you rate this article?