American League Division Series Game 2: Kansas City Royals at Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
Date/Time: October 3, 9:37 p.m. ET
MLB Betting Odds From 5Dimes Sportsbook
Probable Starters: KC: Yordano Ventura (0-0, 0.00) v. LAA: Matt Shoemaker (0-0, 0.00)
Moneyline: Los Angeles -154
The Kansas City Royals could be in a bit of a tough spot on Friday night for Game 2 of the American League Division Series against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. After an emotional win in the Wild Card game on Tuesday, the Royals flew out to Anaheim and played again on Thursday night. Most players and other travelers believe that the time difference and fatigue doesn’t set in until the second or third day and that’s the situation that the Royals face on Friday night. With a game late into the night on Thursday, Friday’s game could be as close to a situational spot as one can get in baseball.
Yordano Ventura will have to shake off his struggles from the AL Wild Card, which the Royals won in thrilling walk-off fashion for their first playoff win since 1985. Ventura was put into a terrible spot by manager Ned Yost, just two days after he threw 73 pitches in a start. He’ll work three days later in this game. Ventura finished his first full season in the Majors with a 14-10 record and a 3.20 ERA. Since the All-Star Break, Ventura is 7-3 with a 3.16 ERA in 13 starts and the Royals are 10-3 in those games. This will be his first career postseason start.
Matt Shoemaker probably didn’t expect to be starting Game 2 of the ALDS when he was demoted to Triple-A Salt Lake City after three relief appearances and posted a 6.31 ERA in five starts. Shoemaker began pro ball at age 21 and spent six seasons in the minors before making his Major League debut. He’s come a long way en route to this first career playoff start. Shoemaker hasn’t pitched since September 15, so this could be a tricky spot for him, but he was 8-1 with a 1.66 ERA over his final 10 appearances of the season.
Ventura made his only career start against the Angels earlier this season. He allowed two runs on seven hits over four innings of work. The Royals are 18-12 for a profit of 1.48 units in Ventura’s 30 starts this season.
Shoemaker made two starts against the Royals this season and gave up 11 runs in nine innings of work. In his second start on June 27, he gave up eight runs on 11 hits in four innings. The Angels are 16-4 in Shoemaker’s 20 starts for a profit of 12.21 units.
Free MLB Pick: Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
The Angels should hold serve at home and should have an advantage in this pitching matchup. Even though Ventura doesn’t have the first appearance jitters, Shoemaker, at 28, is certainly more experienced and will have the home crowd in support. This is a tough spot for the Royals with the travel schedule and the emotion that they’ve already spent this week. With a lot of guys that have never been in this situation before, the Royals are at a disadvantage on Friday.