Opinion

Yordano Ventura returns to action in critical weekend for Royals pitching staff

Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura
Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura The Kansas City Star

This weekend will test the Royals pitching staff. Their bullpen is worn out after 14 innings of work on Wednesday and Thursday day. Their opponent is the Detroit Tigers. And their three starters have all exhibited troubling symptoms this season.

Yordano Ventura returns from a seven-game suspension on Friday. Can he control his emotions in an effective manner on the mound?

Jeremy Guthrie will make his sixth start of the season. Can he build on his purportedly improved command and actually log a worthwhile start?

Jason Vargas takes the hill for Sunday Night Baseball on ESPN. Can he replicate his six-inning effort from Tuesday?

Here are the matchups for these three games at Comerica Park:

Friday, 6:08 p.m.: Yordano Ventura (2-2, 4.94 ERA) vs. David Price (3-1, 2.93 ERA).

Saturday, 12:08 p.m.: Jeremy Guthrie (1-2, 6.52 ERA) vs. Anibal Sanchez (2-3, 5.11 ERA).

Sunday, 7:05 p.m. Jason Vargas (3-1, 5.26 ERA) vs. Shane Greene (3-2, 5.56 ERA).

FROM THE STAR

1. Luke Hochevar returned after a 585-day layoff to aid the Kansas City bullpen.

2. Sam Mellinger wrote a column about Eric Hosmer, the Royals’ budding star at first base.

3. MLB commissioner Rob Manfred stopped by Kauffman Stadium. Here is a rundown of his news conference from Vahe Gregorian.

4. The Royals traded for a new backup catcher, Drew Butera.

5. Alex Rios has begun swinging a bat.

THE ROYALS’ PLAYOFF PERCENTAGE (ACCORDING TO BASEBALL PROSPECTUS)

38.8 percent.

HERE IS SOME ROCK MUSIC

“Cool Night” by Young Widows.

To reach Andy McCullough, call 816-234-4730 or send email to rmccullough@kcstar.com. Follow him on Twitter @McCulloughStar. Download True Blue, The Star’s free Royals app, here.

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