The Kansas City Royals look to put a crimp in the Cleveland Indians’ plans of locking up the American League Central when the teams kick off a three-game series Monday night at Progressive Field. Kansas City could be in tough this week, as it has dropped five of six games it has played in Cleveland this season and was the underdog in all six. The Royals also won’t be able to rely on new staff ace Danny Duffy, who pitched Sunday against the Chicago White Sox.
Two of the best left-handers in baseball square off Monday night on the West coast as Madison Bumgarner and the San Francisco Giants visit Clayton Kershaw and the Los Angeles Dodgers. The two have faced off twice this season, with Kershaw’s Dodgers prevailing both times – but both outings came back in April, before Bumgarner caught fire to emerge as the Cy Young favorite. Bumgarner’s Giants won three of four head-to-head meetings in 2015, going Under in three of the four starts.
Top spot in the American League East is up for grabs this week as the Boston Red Sox and the Baltimore Orioles duel in a four-game series beginning Monday at Camden Yards. The Orioles may have the momentum after taking two of three from division-leading Boston at Fenway Park earlier this month, but the teams have played the season series to a near-stalemate, with the Orioles having won eight of 15 meetings to date.
WAG of the Week:
Ariana Aubert is the girlfriend of J.D. Martinez of the Detroit Tigers. Ariana is a former Miami Dolphins cheerleader and now just lives the life of a baseball WAG. (WAG courtesy of PSD RedZone)
* To say the Indians are in trouble without the services of starting pitcher Carlos Carrasco may be an understatement. Carrasco, who will miss the remainder of the season with a broken hand, was one of the top pitchers in the AL Central this season, with the Indians going 16-9 in his 25 starts in 2015.
* New York Mets outfielder Yoenis Cespedes is considered day-to-day after leaving Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Twins with nausea and dizziness. The Mets can ill afford to be without Cespedes in its quest for a National League playoff spot; they’re 12-15 for a whopping -574 units in 27 games with Cespedes out of the lineup.
* Mark Trumbo continues to mash, returning from a two-game absence to belt his major league-leading 43rd home run in Sunday’s triumph over Tampa Bay. The Orioles have Trumbo to thank for their spot in the pennant race; they’re 29-9 in games in which Trumbo has gone deep at least once.
* Washington Nationals shortstop Trea Turner is making doubters out of even his staunchest critics – especially those based in Atlanta. The rookie infielder has obliterated the Braves this season, batting .475 with five doubles, six home runs, seven stolen bases, 12 RBIs and a stunning 20 runs scored in just 13 games.
* J.A. Happ looks to cap a dream season with his 20th win of the season as he leads the Toronto Blue Jays into Seattle for a date with his former team on Tuesday night. Happ, who is aiming to become the majors’ second 20-game winner, enters the week ranked sixth in the majors in units won ($1,189).
* Rich Hill has been making Under bettors happy since joining the Los Angeles Dodgers in a trade with Oakland earlier this summer. Hill is 0-3-1 in four starts with the Dodgers; that four-game stretch increases his streak of starts without an Over to nine (0-8-1) going into Tuesday’s outing against Johnny Cueto and the Giants.
Keep riding that Kansas City Over streak – it isn’t showing any signs of slowing down. The Royals went 2-1 O/U against the White Sox over the weekend, extending their sensational run to 18-3-1 O/U since the end of August.
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