The Kansas City Royals were edged out by the Minnesota Twins on Wednesday night to prevent a series sweep. Taking two of three sounds great and all, but the Royals have no room for error. The Twins are a team the Royals would have hoped to take an easy three games from. It isn’t every day you get to play a team as bad as the Twins are. But then again, I always say the teams with nothing to play for can be the most dangerous.
The Twins bit them, and are now looking at a 4 game deficit to their entry into the postseason, and ultimately, a chance to defend their World Series. If Mike Moustakas were healthy, the Royals would have more than likely been sitting in the postseason at the moment. Not to mention, Alex Gordon lost significant time due to colliding with Moustakas.
There were a lot of wins left out there on the board. However, overcoming injuries are part of the game, in any team sport. Despite all of the headaches the Royals have had to contend with this season, they’re still in a position where they could eek into the postseason, and play in the Wild Card Round. Over a month ago did anybody think that was even possible? Kansas City has gone 19-7 in their last twenty-six games to dream up the possibility of doing it.
For most teams, after going 19-7, 19-6 before the loss on Wednesday, statistical variation starts to kick in and they return to the mean. The Royals have no time for that. They need to ignore basic statistical principles and embrace the underdog role, the same role that they have been in for the last few years. The Royals will make a business trip to Chicago for the duration of the weekend, with their sights on W’s.
Kansas City Royals vs. Chicago White Sox
Yordano Ventura (10-9, 4.22 ERA) vs Carlos Rodon (6-8, 3.90 ERA)
Yordano is one of, if not, the most disliked player in all of baseball. The debate could be made that Jose Bautisa is, but certainly, when speaking of pitchers Ventura is not on the favorable end. Ventura has to make the White Sox hate him tonight, and not because of his personality or character. Ventura needs to make life difficult on the White Sox at the plate. He’s been playing some of his best baseball of the year recently, with a 2.20 ERA in his last three outings. Additionally, in six of his last seven starts, he has held offenses to 2 or less runs.
Carlos Rodon has been pitching pretty well himself, posting a 1.83 ERA in his last three starts. So, Ventura and Rodon are both coming in with some success lately. I see this pitching matchup as being pretty much even. The Royals have been successful over the White Sox in seven of their last nine meetings. This is a pitching rematch from June 12th, where the Royals came out with a victory. I think it happens again tonight for Kansas City. They have lost five of their last eight games, and have to get back to playing solid baseball for one final push. The price is right with the Royals in Chicago on Friday night.
PICK: ROYALS TO WIN +101