The Cleveland Indians and Kansas City Royals get started on Monday with the first of four games at Kauffman Stadium. The Royals are coming off a three-game series against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. They looked good in one game, a 11-3 win on Saturday, but otherwise didn’t keep up in a 9-1 and most recently on Sunday, 13-4 loss. Brad Keller didn’t have a bad game, as he went 4.1 innings with 6 hits and 2 earned runs allowed.
The bullpen absolutely collapsed on the Royals, though, as the relievers combined to give up 6 earned runs. Jose Berrios lost the battle of the starting pitchers, as he conceded 6 hits and 4 earned runs through 6 innings. However, games are often won and lost with the bullpen. In this case, the Royals lost the bullpen battle and game. The Royals are still up in the AL Central with a record of 16-10.
It’s been a good start for the Royals, but a lot can go south in a hurry when it comes to baseball. They have a 1.5-game lead on the Chicago White Sox, who are still the popular team to win the division. I can’t argue with that, as the White Sox have the most talent on their roster. Just keep in mind that it doesn’t necessarily equate to a deep playoff run, though. The Royals have made good on going far with a limited payroll in the past. Far as in winning a World Series in 2015 over the New York Mets.
The Indians are three games behind the Royals with a record of 13-13. I wouldn’t say that this start is too much of a surprise for the Indians. They looked like an average team going into this season, and will likely be flirting with the .500 mark often this year. Cleveland is coming off a 5-0 win over the White Sox on Sunday. If the Tribe are winning games this season, it’s likely because of their pitching staff.
Zach Plesac turned in a productive performance with 3 hits and no earned runs allowed through 5.2 innings of work. The Indians were able to take two of three games against the White Sox in Chicago at Guaranteed Rate Field. They also won on Friday behind a solid performance from the bullpen in a 5-3 win. Shane Bieber was tagged for 3 earned runs, but the bullpen held the lead down. Head below for our free Indians vs. Royals pick on May 3, 2021.
Cleveland Indians vs. Kansas City Royals MLB Betting Odds:
Indians vs. Royals Prediction:
The Indians have a reliable starting rotation and bullpen. It might not be the best rotation in the majors, but more than enough to win a lot of games. The offense needs to pull their weight, though. Cleveland can be spotty offensively and prone to going through cold spells. The Indians are 21st in the majors with 4.02 runs scored per 9 innings. Meanwhile, their pitching staff as a team is eighth with an ERA of 4.02, and fifth with an opposing batting average of .208.
There is nothing wrong with the Indians when it comes to their pitching, and Aaron Civale looks to prove that statement right at Kauffman Stadium on Monday. Civale heads into Monday night with an ERA of 2.94 and 0.92 WHIP. He has a perfect record of 4-0 going into this contest in Kansas City. Civale is coming off a lackluster performance against the Minnesota Twins with 8 hits and 4 earned runs allowed through 7.2 innings. That said, it’s the first start the Civale wasn’t in good form.
He has been strong on the road with an ERA of 2.77 and 0.92 WHIP. He faces a Royals’ offense that has scored an average of 4.78 runs per 9 innings for 12th in the majors. The Royals will be sending out their top pitching prospect for his MLB debut versus the Indians tonight.
Daniel Lynch is expected to do big things for the Royals in his career. He was the 34th pick in the 2018 draft for the Royals. Lynch enters the big leagues with plenty of promise. However, he hasn’t pitched in a meaningful game in two years in the Arizona Fall League. Lynch posted an ERA of 3.86 and 1.42 WHIP through 14 innings of work.
He is skipping AA and AAA ball and going straight to the major leagues. Lynch did see work in spring training and didn’t do well in 11.2 innings. Some youngsters get the hang of things right away, and Lynch looked like a work-in-progress from his work in spring training. He posted an ERA of 7.71 and 1.62 WHIP, with 13 hits, 10 earned runs, and 3 home runs conceded. Lynch also walked 6 batters. Lynch likely develops into a productive member of the Royals’ rotation, but we haven’t seen any indications of him being ready yet. I like Civale and the Indians at this price.