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Game One Hundred and Fifty-Three: Cleveland Guardians at Kansas City Royals

Seeking a sweep

Cleveland Guardians v Kansas City Royals Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images

The conservators of Cleveland take on the royalty of Kansas City this afternoon at Kauffman Stadium in the final 2023 matchup of this division rivalry. Cleveland has long since secured the season series, but Kansas City has a shot at a series sweep today after taking the first two. They’re in the midst of their second hottest stretch of the season, taking wins in six of their last seven games. A win today would give the Royals their third sweep of the season.

Zack Greinke will toe the mound for Kansas City. Though the command is still elite, Greinke simply isn’t fooling batters anymore with his diminished stuff, producing the worst season of his career. He’s only 33 strikeouts away from 3000, but it’s unclear if he will get the opportunity next season to hit that milestone. Greinke last faced Cleveland on July 25, allowing four runs in five innings.

Lucas Giolito will start for Cleveland with an unusual season for him drawing shortly to its conclusion. Giolito has had the misfortune of playing for three bad teams in one season. He started with the White Sox and pitched pretty well in 21 starts, bouncing back somewhat from a down 2022. The Angels acquired him at the trade deadline and he was a disaster, posting a 6.89 ERA in six starts in Orange County. He was placed on waivers and, despite being effectively out of the postseason race, Cleveland claimed him. Giolito hasn’t improved since, producing a 5.82 ERA across three starts for the Guardians. He last faced Kansas City on May 20, tossing six innings of one-run ball in a Chicago win.

First pitch: 1:10 pm CDT

Royals lineup

Guardians lineup