ALCS Betting Preview: Royals at Orioles (-125,
The Kansas City Royals are entering their first American League
Championship Series since winning the World Series in 1985. The
Baltimore Orioles, who host the Royals in Game 1 of the ALCS on
Friday, are back for the first time since 1997 and are
searching for the franchise’s first pennant since 1983. The
Orioles and Kansas City present a contrast of styles but got to
the ALCS the same way – with strong starting pitching and
dominant bullpen work.
Baltimore led the majors in home runs and was last in stolen
bases during the regular season while Kansas City was last in
home runs but sat on top in stolen bases. The Royals do all the
things well that teams need to do to win without hitting home
runs, including playing great defense, but started to power up
in the postseason with key extra-inning blasts from Mike
Moustakas and Eric Hosmer. Even without Manny Machado, Chris
Davis and Matt Wieters in the lineup, the Orioles pounded
Detroit pitching in the ALDS behind a strong series from Nelson
Cruz and consistent production from Nick Markakis in the
TV: 8:07 p.m. ET, TBS
LINE HISTORY: The Orioles opened as -120
favorites and are now up to -125. The total is set at 7.0.
INJURY REPORT: Orioles – 1B Chris Davis (out
WEATHER REPORT: There is a 74 percent chance
of rain at Oriole Park at Camden Yards, while temperatures will
be in the mid 50’s. There will also be a slight five mile per
hour wind blowing in from center field.
WHAT CAPPERS SAY:
WHAT BOOKS SAY: “The Orioles were probably the
most complete team in baseball entering the playoffs, but it’s
hard to argue against the magic we’ve seen from the Royals, not
just in the opening round, but over the course of the second
half of the regular season as well. Kansas City will do all it
can to small-ball the O’s into submission, but they’ll run into
more of a mirror-image than it saw against the Angels in the
Division Series and that will pose a challenge. Not a lot of
line value with the Royals currently sitting as a +110 to +120
underdog for the series, however. Would need to get them at
+125 or better in order to support them here, and even still,
it might be a stretch. A little more experience for the O’s,
and it likely pays off.” – Covers
Expert Sean Murphy.
WAG WAR: Eric Hosmer’s girlfriend Kim Figueroa
and Chis Daivs’ wife Jill Davis.
PITCHING MATCHUP: Royals RH James Shields
(1-0, 4.91 ERA) vs. Orioles RH Chris Tillman (1-0, 3.60)
“Big Game” James was bailed out by his offense after allowing
four runs in five innings in the wild-card game against Oakland
and surrendered a pair of solo home runs before earning the win
over Los Angeles in his lone ALDS start. The free agent to-be’s
big-game reputation outpaces the actual results as he is 3-4
with a 4.96 ERA in eight career postseason starts, including
0-2 in the ALCS. Shields picked up a pair of wins over the
Orioles earlier this season, yielding a total of five runs and
12 hits in 14 innings.
Tillman battled through five innings against Detroit in Game 1
of the ALDS and held the Tigers to a pair of solo home runs in
earning the win. The 26-year-old completed seven innings only
once in his last seven starts but issued only one walk against
Detroit while striking out six. Tillman had no trouble going
deep into the game against the Royals on May 16, when he tossed
a five-hit shutout.
* Under is 6-1 in the last seven meetings in Baltimore.
* Under is 11-3-1 in the last 15 meetings.
* Royals are 7-3 in the last 10 meetings.
* Orioles are 20-6 in their last 26 home games versus a team
with a winning record.
COVERS CONSENSUS: Just over 63 percent of wagers are
backing the Orioles at -125.