The Royals are back home after a six-game road trip that started in Minnesota. By losing two out of three to the Twins, they extended their streak without a series win on the road to a daunting 10 series’.
Headed into a three-game set in Seattle, the Royals were looking at road series’ against the Indians, Blue Jays, and the hot Nationals. With their series against the Blue Jays being a four-gamer, and their next road contests being in Cleveland, Atlanta, Minnesota, and Boston, you didn’t have to squint super hard to see the Royals going into Detroit on August 9th without a series win on the road.
Fortunately for all of us, they took care of business by taking two out of three against the Mariners to snap the streak. And while the Royals have been atrocious on the road with an 11-26 record, Kauffman Stadium hasn’t exactly brought much solace.
In fact, despite having an improved 14-23 record at home this season, their run differential is actually worse at home (-44) than it is on the road (-20). Any hope of revitalization at home may be short-lived, as the Royals start a quick four-game homestand against a Twins team that Kansas City has beaten just once all season.
2019 has been a far cry from the 2016 squad that was kept afloat by a 15-4 record against the Twins. In today’s matchup, Glenn Sparkman will take the mound against former Royals prospect Jake Odorizzi.
Sparkman is making his second start against the Twins in as many outings, giving up four earned runs to Minnesota last week in 5.0 innings. Meanwhile, Odorizzi has been a significant piece of the Twins surprising success. His 2.4 fWAR through just 76.1 innings is inching closer to his career high of 2.9 set in 169.1 innings back in 2015. His 2.24 ERA is also good for the 3rd best in all of baseball.
Oh, it’s also Stranger Things night at the ol’ ballpark. Adalberto Mondesi is out of the lineup again, having been moved to the 10-day IL. In his place, Humberto Arteaga will make his Major League debut. Rustin Dodd, formerly of The Athletic, wrote about Arteaga’s surprising candidacy for the Royals final roster spot back in March. Congrats Humberto!
Here are your lineups for game one of this series.