Streaking Royals face Fernandez on MLB.TV

KC seeks 10th consecutive win amid Wild Card push; Porcello vies for 18th victory

Streaking Royals face Fernandez on MLB.TV

The Royals are the hottest team in baseball and they will look to win their 10th straight game and keep pace in the American League Wild Card race tonight against ace Jose Fernandez and the Marlins, who are also contending for a Wild Card berth in the National League.

The Marlins are trying to catch the Cardinals in the race for the second NL Wild Card. The Mets are also in the mix, and their important series against the Cards continues tonight in St. Louis. Also in the NL, the Giants and Dodgers jockey for position atop the West division.

Meanwhile, in the AL, Boston's Rick Porcello goes for a MLB-leading 18th win and the Yankees and Mariners give fans a fun pitching matchup.

Today's full schedule of games gets underway this afternoon, when the Astros and Pirates play a rubber game at PNC Park. Both clubs are contending for Wild Card spots in their leagues. Also today, Yu Darvish starts for the first-place Rangers and ace Zack Greinke gets the ball for the D-backs.

And the best place to catch all the action is on MLB.TV.

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Here's what to watch for today in the Majors (all times ET):

Fernandez looks to slow Royals: KC@MIA, 7:10 p.m.
The Royals are seeking their first 10-game win streak since June 2014, and they will have their work cut out for them against Fernandez, who is second in MLB with 204 strikeouts.

Dillon Gee starts for the Royals, who are four games behind the Orioles for the second AL Wild Card. Gee tossed seven innings of one-run ball against the Twins in his last start.

The Marlins are 1 1/2 games behind the Cardinals for the second NL Wild Card.

Stat that matters: Fernandez needs six strikeouts to become the Marlins' all-time single-season strikeout king. Ryan Dempster holds the club record with 209 strikeouts in 2000.

Gee's winning start

Tanaka, Iwakuma duel: NYY@SEA, 3:40 p.m.
Masahiro Tanaka and Hisashi Iwakuma, former teammates in Japan, meet for the second time this season in a matchup of AL Wild Card contenders. Tanaka and the Yankees bested Iwakuma and the Mariners in the first meeting between these pitchers back in April.

Tanaka earned the win in the first meeting, charged with three runs (two earned) on six hits over seven innings. Iwakuma took the loss in that game, allowing four runs on eight hits in seven innings.

Stat that matters: Tanaka has recorded at least eight strikeouts without a walk in each of his last three starts, which is tied for an MLB record.

Tanaka blanks the Angels

Porcello goes for 18th win: BOS@TB, 7:10 p.m.
Porcello looks to become the Majors' first 18-game winner this season when he takes the mound for the Red Sox, who are tied with Toronto atop the AL East. Porcello is 5-3 with a 3.49 ERA on the road, compared with 12-0 with a 2.96 ERA at Fenway Park.

Matt Andriese starts for the Rays. He's trying to turn things around after allowing 11 runs combined over his last two outings.

Stat that matters: Porcello is 3-0 with a 2.25 ERA in three starts against the Rays this year.

Porcello's brilliant road outing

Wild Card contenders meet: NYM@STL, 8:15 p.m.
The Mets are 3 1/2 games behind the Cardinals for the second NL Wild Card, having won the opener of this three-game series on Tuesday. The Mets will look to further close the gap tonight behind Jacob deGrom, who owns a 2.98 ERA over his last seven starts.

The Cardinals will counter with Carlos Martinez, who tossed seven innings of one-run ball in his last start to pick up his team-leading 11th win. The Cards have struggled to a 28-34 record at Busch Stadium this year.

Stat that matters: The Cardinals have homered in 12 straight games, totaling 25 in that span.

Martinez's outstanding outing

How the West was won: SF@LAD, 10:10 p.m.
One of baseball's best rivalries has another level of intrigue, with the Dodgers and Giants battling for first place in the NL West.

It looks like Rich Hill is finally ready to take the mound for his Dodgers debut, as he's been delayed several times because of blisters since coming over from Oakland at the Trade Deadline. Hill has not started since July 17.

Johnny Cueto is set to start for the Giants. Cueto beat the Mets in his last start for his first win of the second half. In three starts against the Dodgers this year, Cueto is 2-0 with a 3.63 ERA.

Stat that matters: The three longest active hit streaks in the Majors are on the line in this game: Angel Pagan (19), Adrian Gonzalez (16) and Corey Seager (14).

Cueto's excellent start

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Austin Laymance is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.