Jason Vargas (2-1, 5.95 ERA) and the Kansas City Royals (16-9) go up against Danny Salazar (3-0, 3.32 ERA) and the Cleveland Indians (9-15) in the first of a three-game division series at Kauffman Stadium. The game gets underway at 8:10 p.m. ET on Tuesday, May. 5 and will air on STO and FSN-KC.
Lorenzo Cain (.333, 18 Rs, 3 HRs, 13 RBIs, 6 SBs) went 1 for 4 Sunday with one run, one home run, and one RBI. In his career against the Royals, Salazar is 3-3 with a 5.45 ERA. He meets a strong Kansas City offense that's batting .296. Michael Brantley (.352, 10 Rs, 1 HR, 12 RBIs, 3 SBs) has been doing well offensively for the Indians, going 2 for 3 Sunday with two runs and two RBIs.
The odds are even for this game and the Over/Under (O/U) is presently unavailable. Against teams in the AL Central, the Royals have an SU record of 11-8. The Royals come into the game with the third-ranked scoring offense in the AL, averaging 5.1 runs per game. The Royals have the top batting average in the league at .296. They have been a terror on the base paths, ranking fifth in all of baseball with 21 steals. As for the pitching staff, the Royals lead the AL in ERA with a 3.08 team average. The Royals are second in the league in WHIP at 1.12.
Against divisional foes, the Indians are 5-12 SU. During the last 10 games, they averaged 5.8 runs per game, above their 4.2 season average. Opposing pitchers have routinely struggled to strike out the Cleveland batters, who rank third in the AL with 6.4 strikeouts per game.
In their previous three games this season, the Royals have a 2-1 record. This game will feature Salazar (RHP) on the mound against the Royals, who have an 8-6 record when they take on a right-handed starter. The left-handed Guthrie will take the mound against the Indians. Against lefty starters this season, they have a terrible 2-8 record overall and 0-3 on the road.
Predictions: SU Winner - KC
The Indians currently sit below .500 against the AL Central Division at 5-12, and the Royals have an 11-8 record.
When the Royals play into extra innings, they have a 1-0 record. The Indians are 0-1 when their games exceed nine innings.
The Indians managed to give up four walks in their last game. They'll have to pick it up against the Royals who are heading in with a 6-1 record against opponents who give up that many walks or more.
When they outhit their opponents, the Indians are 7-2. The Royals have a 15-3 record when outhitting opponents.
Ranking 15th in runs, Cleveland has earned 102 this season. Kansas City ranks fourth with 128 runs.
Ranking 26th, Kansas City is near the bottom of the league in walks, notching 55 this season. Cleveland ranks in the top 10 at 10th with 83.
The Royals are 10-4 in games where they hit one or more home runs. The Indians are 8-6 when they hit at least one homer.