After scoring 17 runs in yesterday afternoon's win, the White Sox offense gave us a glimpse of the potential everyone knew they had heading into the season. Chicago will now head to Kansas City as they look to win their third straight series, and we’ll preview the game before going over which side I’ll be backing in this one.
The Kansas City Royals may have won yesterday afternoon's game, but they also became the first team to lose a series to Oakland A’s this season. By allowing one run in the win, it marked just the third time over the past ten games that Kansas City has allowed two or fewer runs, as their pitching staff is allowing the second-highest hard hit percentage and third-highest BAbip in the league.
On the hill for KC today will be veteran right-hander Zack Greinke, who is coming off his first win of the season. Greinke has made seven starts up to this point, racking up 36 innings in which he has a 5.25 ERA with 25 strikeouts and six walks. The veteran’s last start was one of the three times that the Royals held a team under two runs over the past ten games, as he threw five innings and allowed just three hits.
Greinke will face a White Sox team coming off their biggest offensive outburst of the season. The struggles of this White Sox team have been talked about constantly in the baseball world, but over their last seven games, Chicago is 5-2 and has scored three or more runs in each of those games. In yesterday’s game, the White Sox racked up eight extra-base hits and were led by Hanser Alberto’s 4 for 4 game with two doubles, a home run, and four RBIs.
Chicago will hand the ball to Dylan Cease tonight to make his eighth start of the year. In 35.3 innings of work, Cease has pitched to a 4.58 ERA with 43 strikeouts and 19 walks. Command has been an issue at times this season for the right-hander, but tonight, he will face a Royals team in the bottom five of the league in walk percentage.
The Royals are currently priced at (-134) on the moneyline, and I’ll be backing them for my play in this one. In their last 21 home games, the Royals are 4-17 overall, and they have also lost the opening game of eight straight series. Chicago and Dylan Cease also have an ideal matchup today since the Royals have struggled mightily with right-handed pitching this season.
Entering tonight, Kansas City is hitting .226 against righties with a .650 OPS. That certainly bodes well for Cease since he has been great on the road this season, putting up a 2.93 ERA in three road starts. He is also in the 68th percentile in strikeout percentage and 66th percentile in whiff percentage.
On the other side, Zack Greinke is a great matchup for a White Sox team who just had their biggest offensive game of the season. The right-hander is in the 32nd percentile in hard hit percentage, 14th percentile in expected slugging percentage, and 8th percentile in expected batting average. Chicago has a 66% in-play percentage, so Greinke’s command and lack of walks may bode well for the White Sox tonight.
Chicago White Sox (-134)