The Kansas City Royals Possess The Cleveland Indians’ Kryptonite
By Alex Duvall
Jason Vargas continued to dazzle on Friday night at Kauffman Stadium, shutting out the reigning American League Champions for a 9 inning CGSO in front of 33,408 Royals fans. This is now Vargas’ fifth scoreless start of the year for the scuffling Kansas City Royals, and his ERA is now down to 2.08 which trails only Ervin Santana and Dallas Keuchel for the lead in the American League. Among plenty of inconsistencies for the KC Royals this year, “Dr. Vargas” has been the most consistent player to dawn the Royal Blue.
What’s more is that in 20 and 2/3 innings against the Cleveland Indians this year, Jason Vargas has allowed only 2 runs. His dominance against Terry Francona’s reigning AL Champs ought to be incredibly attractive to GMs all over baseball, but what does this mean for the KC Royals and the rest of the American League specifically?
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Cleveland is still expected by many to be a factor in October, and I think everyone can agree that Cleveland will make the playoffs in one fashion or another, which means that every AL contender needs to seriously consider acquiring Jason Vargas: right now.
Let’s take a quick look at teams that are either in playoff contention right now, or are expected to be around in September. BOS, NYY, BAL, KC, CLE, DET, SEA, HOU, and TEX, are probably the only 9 teams with a realistic shot at a place in the AL Playoffs. Every one of those teams would get immediately better with the addition of the KC Royals’ Jason Vargas.
In my opinion, the Cleveland Indians are going to get rolling and eventually compete with the Houston Astros for best team in the American League, meaning that someone is going to have to knock Cleveland off eventually in order to represent the AL in this year’s Fall Classic.
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The quickest way to do that? Dr. Vargas. Most contenders will be shopping for starting pitching around the trade deadline. There’s not a team in the American League with 3 starting pitchers better than Jason Vargas right now. Adding Jason Vargas would make every team better over night, and make any contender an immediate threat to the Cleveland Indians title of Reigning AL Champs. The KC Royals should jump the phone quickly.