The Royals have just won an amazing American League Divisional Series after an amazing Wild Card victory, but here's the thing - THEY'RE STILL NOT DONE. The Royals will have their hands full with the 96-win Eastern Division-winning Baltimore Orioles in the American League Champion Series. How should the Royals line up their rotation to beat those birds?
Here is the American League Championship Series schedule:
Game 1: Friday, October 10 in Baltimore
Game 2: Saturday, October 11 in Baltimore
Game 3: Monday, October 13 in Kansas City
Game 4: Tuesday, October 14 in Kansas City
Game 5*: Wednesday, October 15 in Kansas City
Game 6*: Friday, October 17 in Baltimore
Game 7*: Saturday, October 18 in Baltimore
By making quick work of the Angels, the Royals will have a completely rested rotation for Friday. James Shields can start Game One on a full four days of rest, which he will, according to Ned Yost. After that?
#Royals' yost says he isnt sure of rotation beyond shields on friday— Jeffrey Flanagan (@jflanagankc) October 6, 2014
Camden Yards is one of the most hitter-friendly parks in the American League, although the Orioles hit almost as many home runs on the road than at home this year. Jason Vargas has performed surprisingly well in his career at Camden Yards, with a 2.76 ERA in four starts, including just two home runs allowed in 29 innings. Yordano Ventura threw eight shutout innings in his only start in Camden Yards back on April 25. Danny Duffy made one start in Baltimore in 2011, giving up two runs in 5 2/3 innings, and gave up an unearned run in a three-batter relief appearance there this year. Jeremy Guthrie, of course, is well acquainted with Camden Yards, spending five seasons in an Orioles uniform. In 82 career games in Baltimore, Guthrie has a 4.19 ERA with 72 home runs allowed.
What does Ned think?
Yost on pitching: We like Guthrie here, we like Vargy on the road. We like Ventura on the road too.— The Program (@theprogramkc) October 6, 2014
Baltimore will probably go with Chris Tillman, Wei-Yin Chen, Bud Norris, and Miguel Gonzalez in the series, although rookie Kevin Gausman could be a candidate to start.
How should the Royals set up their rotation for the ALCS?