The KC Royals have an opportunity to turn around three-weeks of poor play by sweeping a doubleheader against the Boston Red Sox Wednesday afternoon. Taking both games would give the Kansas City Royals a four game winning streak.
The Boston Red Sox came to Kansas City on a tear. For about a month, they had been hitting the ball better than the ’27 Yankees according to Fangraphs.com. Boston came into the series ten games over .500 at 24-14 and were one of the hottest teams in the league.
On the other hand, the KC Royals have been wallowing ever since getting off to a 12-6 start to the 2016 season. They last won two consecutive games April 21-22 against Detroit and Baltimore. After taking two of three games versus the Orioles on April 22-24, the team lost five straight games and has gone 7-13 in their last 20 games.
The Kansas City Royals can change all of that by taking both games of a doubleheader against the Boston Red Sox today.
The KC Royals also have their two most consistent starters on the mound in Ian Kennedy (4-3, 3.26 ERA) and Edinson Volquez (3-2, 3.51 ERA). The Red Sox will send Steven Wright (3-3, 2.36 ERA) and David Price (5-1, 6.00 ERA) to the Kauffman Stadium hill to oppose them.
The Boston Red Sox and Kansas City Royals are playing two games on Wednesday to make up for the rainout of Monday’s game. The unscheduled day off might have helped the KC Royals after a tough stretch in which they played 13 of 16 games on the road followed by their return to Kauffman Stadium. The team had not had an off day in 10 consecutive days before Monday.
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The Kansas City Royals played with more energy and overall sharpness on Tuesday (an 8-4 KC win) than the team has shown in a long time. Though the KC Royals took two of three from Atlanta over the weekend, they almost seemed to be running through mud against the moribund Braves.
Among the encouraging signs have been Lorenzo Cain breaking out of his early-season funk, shortstop Alcides Escobar coming alive at the top of the batting order, and Paulo Orlando giving the team production from right field by slashing .471/.500/.882 since entering the lineup May 9. As a result, the Kansas City Royals formerly struggling offense has scored 48 runs over their last 10 games.
If substitutes Dillon Gee and Danny Duffy can stabilized the rotation after Chris Young and Kris Medlen were forced to go to the disabled list, the Kansas City Royals can get back on track in the AL Central. With seven out of their next 10 games against AL Central leader Chicago White Sox, the KC Royals have an opportunity to make up ground very quickly.
While it’s a bit ridiculous for a baseball team to call a day pivotal in mid May, the Kansas City Royals can gain a big boost going into a key stretch against the Chicago White Sox with two wins later today. Even a split will give the KC Royals their second consecutive series win.