The Kansas City Royals endured significant troubles against the Cleveland Indians all season before having their way in a Monday doubleheader vs. their American League Central rivals.
The visiting Royals (69-82) look to ride that momentum into their Tuesday clash against the Indians (73-76).
Hunter Dozier belted a two-run homer to highlight a three-RBI performance in Kansas City’s 7-2 victory in Game 1 on Monday. He followed that up by driving in a run in the Royals’ 4-2 win in the nightcap.
Dozier is batting .368 (14-for-38) with four homers and nine RBIs over his past 12 games.
The Royals posted a 3-0 win over Cleveland on April 5 before losing 11 straight in the season series prior to Monday’s action.
“We were 1-11 coming in here, and that doesn’t sit right with anybody even though we go about it the same way,” Kansas City manager Mike Matheny said. “You just knew at some point we were going to put together a little better product, that’s always the goal is how close can we get to looking perfect (even though we know) that it’s not attainable.”
Salvador Perez has done his share to help the Royals reach their goals this season. He set a major league record for homers in a season by a primary catcher (46) when he launched a two-run shot in Game 1 on Monday.
“It’s great,” Perez told Bally Sports Kansas City. “We just try to play hard every game; it doesn’t matter who we face. The result may be something different, but we just like to play hard every game. … It’s good for us tonight.”
It wasn’t for the Indians, however, after they erupted for 11 runs on both Saturday and Sunday in wins over the New York Yankees. On Monday, they totaled just 10 hits over the two games.
“I think I shared thoughts that each day is different and New York is behind us,” Cleveland acting manager DeMarlo Hale said. “(It’s) one of those days where I don’t try to equate to the New York series. We turned the page and we’re playing the Royals.”
Kansas City rookie left-hander Daniel Lynch (4-5, 5.34 ERA) will get the nod on Tuesday opposite Cleveland right-hander Cal Quantrill (6-3, 2.89).
Lynch has struggled in three September outings, posting an 0-2 record with a 9.28 ERA. The 24-year-old has surrendered 13 runs on 14 hits — including four homers — in just 10 2/3 innings this month.
Lynch was pulled from his last start against the Oakland Athletics in the third inning Thursday after experiencing left calf tightness. He allowed three runs (one earned) on two hits.
Lynch also sputtered in his lone previous encounter with Cleveland, in his major league debut on May 3. He yielded three runs on four hits with four walks in 4 2/3 innings of a no-decision.
Quantrill, 26, won for the sixth time in his past seven decisions after permitting three runs (all unearned) on two hits in 6 2/3 innings of a 12-3 victory at Minnesota on Wednesday.
Quantrill owns a 1-0 record with a 3.38 ERA in two appearances (one start) against Kansas City this year. In his career, he is 1-0 with a 2.45 ERA in four games (one start) vs. the Royals.
–Field Level Media