Jake Odorizzi (6-6, 3.02 ERA) and the Tampa Bay Rays (63-64) go up against Kris Medlen (2-0, 3.10 ERA) and the Kansas City Royals (78-49) in the second of a three-game series at Tropicana Field. The Royals won the last game 3-2 and Kansas City leads the series 1-0. The game gets underway at 6:10 p.m. ET on Saturday, Aug. 29 and will air on SUN and FSKC.
In his last start, Odorizzi pitched 6.0 innings, giving up two runs, striking out four and walking one in an 8-2 loss to the Athletics. Logan Forsythe (.278, 55 Rs, 15 HRs, 53 RBIs, 9 SBs) continued his strong season yesterday, going 2 for 4 with two runs, one home run, and one RBI. The Royals were victorious over the Orioles 8-3 the last time Medlen pitched. He went 6.0 innings, allowing three runs and striking out six. Lorenzo Cain (.311, 78 Rs, 12 HRs, 56 RBIs, 24 SBs) has been doing well offensively for the Royals, going 2 for 4 yesterday.
Tampa Bay is a small -115 favorite in this game and the Over/Under (O/U) is seven runs. The Rays are 30-28 as the favorite and have an overall money line of -409. Over the last 10 games, they have performed poorly when playing as the favorite (1-3).
On the other side, the Royals have a record of 32-25 when they are the underdog and are +2,569 overall with the money line. Kansas City is a terror on the base paths, ranking fifth in the MLB with 83 stolen bases. The Royals are a problem for opposing batters, sporting a 3.57 ERA this season. They also average just 8.3 hits allowed per game, fifth-best in the AL.
The previous four games have all gone Kansas City's way. This game will feature Medlen (RHP) on the mound against the Rays, who have a 41-50 record when they take on a right-handed starter. Taking the hill against the Royals will be the right-hander Odorizzi. Right-handed starters haven't been a big issue for them as they sport a 54-28 record.
Predictions: SU Winner - TB, O/U - Under
In their last game, the Royals won by a margin of one run. The Rays are 22-22 in one-run games. The Royals have a 21-11 record in close games.
Tampa Bay has won 48% (25-27) of its games when leading after 7 innings. However, Kansas City has won 66% (31-16) of its games when taking a late lead.
Having scored zero runs in their last game, the Royals are going to have to up their game if they want to win this matchup. The Rays have an 11-0 record in games where opponents scored that many runs.
When they outhit their opponents, the Rays are 43-18. The Royals have a 62-8 record when outhitting opponents.
Ranking 29th, Tampa Bay is near the bottom of the league in runs, scoring 475 this season. Kansas City ranks in the top 10 at ninth with 558.
Ranking 30th, Kansas City is at the bottom of the league in walks, notching 286 this season. Tampa Bay ranks in the bottom half at 20th with 344.
The Rays are 46-34 in games where they hit one or more home runs. The Royals are 54-21 when they hit at least one homer.