The Royals host the San Francisco Giants at Surprise Stadium, while with expectations newly raised by Joe Posnanski we all await a strikeout-laden performance by the Royals' pitching staff.
Matt Cain starts for the Giants against Horacio Ramirez for the Royals. Kevin Pucetas, Jack Taschner, and Brian Wilson are scheduled to relieve for the Giants. For the Royals: Kyle Davies, Jamey Wright, Julio Pimentel, and Heath Phillips.
MLB.com Gameday: here.
Recent action: the Royals defeated the Giants in Scottsdale last Friday, 6-1, as Xaq Greinke and six relievers limited the Giants to 5 hits. Matt Cain last pitched Thursday against the Dodgers, giving up 1 run in an inning and two thirds on a home run by Russell Martin. Horacio Ramirez last pitched in the Royals' Cactus League opener Wednesday against the Rangers; he got his work in.
Game notes: for the Giants, bench coach Ron Wotus will be acting as the skipper today while manager Bruce Bochy undergoes arthroscopic shoulder surgery. For the Royals, Billy Butler's availability for daring exploits on the basepaths is in doubt at this hour. He exited yesterday's game early when his hand swelled after having been struck by a pitch.
Fun fact: Ron Wotus has been the bench coach for the last three Giants managers, Dusty Baker, Felipe Alou, and Bruce Bochy.
Personal note: my step-daughter and one of Horacio Ramirez's cousins attended the same middle school, somewhere in viticultural Northern California.