Kansas City Royals vs. Cleveland Indians Preview and Predictions 08-25-2019
Franmil Reyes hopes to build off perhaps his biggest hit in a Cleveland uniform when the Indians attempt to complete a three-game sweep of the visiting Kansas City Royals on Sunday afternoon. Reyes, who is batting just .167 since coming over from San Diego before the trade deadline, belted a three-run homer in the 4-2 victory on Saturday as the Indians strengthened their grasp on the first wild-card slot in the American League.
Reyes, who reached 30 homers for the first time in his career Saturday, gave Cleveland a boost with his third-inning blast after third baseman Jose Ramirez had to leave the game in the second due to right wrist discomfort and is day-to-day. The Indians have won 12 of 18 games in the season series and will try to claim the finale as well with ace right-hander Shane Bieber on the mound while struggling Kansas City counters with lefty Eric Skoglund, who was summoned from the minors earlier in the week. The Royals are winless in their last nine series (0-8-1) and have lost four straight games with just five runs scored, dropping to 6-21 since winning nine of the first 12 contests after the All-Star break. Whit Merrifield has hit safely in six straight games (7-for-26) and slugger Jorge Soler knocked in his team-leading and career-high 89th run Saturday for Kansas City.
TV: 1:10 p.m. ET, FS Kansas City, STO (Cleveland)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Royals LH Eric Skoglund (2018: 1-6, 5.14 ERA) vs. Indians RH Shane Bieber (12-6, 3.26)
Skoglund will make his first appearance on a major-league mound in 2019 and the 19th start of his career after serving an 80-game performance-enhancing drug suspension earlier this season. The 26-year-old UCF product suffered the loss in his last start of 2018 against Cleveland despite allowing two runs (one earned) on three hits over five innings. Francisco Lindor is 3-for-4 with two homers versus Skoglund, who is 3-5 with a 6.04 ERA in 13 minor-league starts this season.
Bieber has lost his last two outings while extending his streak of quality starts to six straight after giving up four runs (two earned) over six innings against the New York Mets on Tuesday. The 24-year-old California native has already topped his win total from last season and owns a 2.89 ERA since the All-Star break. Merrifield is 4-for-12 with two doubles and a homer against Bieber, who is 1-0 with a 5.73 ERA in two starts versus the Royals this year.
1. Royals INF Cheslor Cuthbert snapped a 0-for-40 slump with a double Saturday and scored a run after drawing a walk.
2. Cleveland 1B Carlos Santana is batting .342 with seven homers, 19 RBIs, 21 runs scored and 19 walks in August.
3. Kansas City INF Nicky Lopez was rested Saturday and is riding a seven-game hitting streak (8-for-23).
News Breaking News
Key Players to Watch
KANSAS CITY ROYALS
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- WristLate Oct | out
Kipnis is sidelined due to a fractured hamate bone in his right wrist. He is expected to miss four to six weeks.
- PersonalProb Thurs | probable
Reyes has been absent from the lineup during the last two games due to a personal matter but is expected to suit up Thursday against the Tigers.
- WristProb Thurs | probable
Maybin sat out the previous game with lingering soreness in his left wrist, but it is expected that he will be available Thursday against the Angels.
- Illnessout for season | 10-day IL
Olson is on the 10-day injured list due to case of shingles, and he is projected to be out for the remainder of the season.
- Forearmout for season | 60-day IL
Kluber has been transferred to the 60-day injured list with a non-displaced fracture of his right ulna bone. He has suffered an oblique strain during his rehab and is expected to miss the remainder of the season.
- GroinOut indefinitely | 60-day IL
Salazar has been transferred to the 10-day injured list with a right groin strain, and there is currently no timetable for return.
- Wristday-to-day | questionable
Maybin has an ongoing left wrist soreness and will not be available Sunday against the Red Sox.
- ShoulderQues Sat | 60-day IL
Rodriguez has been reinstated from the 60-day injured list after a recovering from a right shoulder strain, but it is unclear if he will rejoin the team for Saturday's game against the Twins.
Kansas City Royals
- Conditioningout for season | out
Junis has been shut down for the remainder of the 2019 season due to load management.
- Toeout for season | 60-day IL
Gutierrez has a fractured right toe and is expected to spend the remainder of the season on the 60-day injured list.
- RestQues Thurs | questionable
Mondesi is likely to be absent from the starting lineup against the White Sox on Thursday as he is expected to be given a day of rest.
- RestQues Wed | questionable
Dozier is unlikely to play Wednesday against the White Sox due to a day of rest.
- ShoulderProb Tues | probable
Newberry has been activated from the 10-day injured list after healing from right shoulder inflammation. He is expected to be available Tuesday against the White Sox.
cleveland-indians Stats 2019
kansas-city-royals Stats 2019