The Tampa Bay Rays and the Kansas City Royals will resume a three-game series Tuesday evening from Tropicana Field. The Royals will give the starting nod to 32-year old right-hander Homer Bailey, and the Rays have yet to announce their starter. The Rays defeated the Royals in all seven meetings last season.
Bailey Shines in Win Against Yankees
Homer Bailey will get the call for the fifth time of the season in this one, aiming for his third straight win. Bailey was outstanding last time out, tossing six innings of one-run ball against the Yankees, leading to the win to lift his record to 3-1. The veteran right-hander is locked in, allowing only one run in his last 14 innings, and he holds a 4.30 ERA and a 1.09 WHIP in 23 innings logged on the season. This start will make Bailey’s first career meeting against the Rays.
— Kansas City Royals (@Royals) April 22, 2019
Whit Merrifield is consistently reaching base in the leadoff position, recording a strong .293 average with three home runs and 10 RBI’s on the season, although he rarely walks. The 30-year old second baseman did big damage against the Rays last season, posting a stellar .429 average with five RBI’s in 28 at bats.
The last place Royals are scoring an average of 4.50 runs per game, ranking them 18th in the Majors. The Kansas City pitching is carrying a weak 5.37 team ERA, pegging them down at 26th in the big leagues. K.C. is struggling on the road where they hold a 2-8 record heading into Monday’s action.
Rays Likely to Use Opener
The Rays do not utilize a traditional starting rotation. They only have two starters that have made more than one start this season. Manager Kevin Cash is using Ryne Stanek as an ‘opener’ and he has silenced his opposition, allowing only two runs on eight hits in 12.1 innings on the season. Ryan Yarbrough, who is pitching in a long relief role, could see action in this one. The 6-foot-5 southpaw allowed three runs in three innings against the Red Sox in his latest effort, and he owns a weak 5.84 ERA in 12.1 innings pitched.
— MLB Network (@MLBNetwork) April 22, 2019
The Rays always seem to develop young talent ready to step in and make an impact, and 24-year old second baseman Brandon Lowe is their latest blossoming player. Lowe is consistently producing, hitting .280 with six home runs and 15 RBI’s. Lowe is red-hot, clubbing four home runs along with 10 RBI’s in his last nine games. The Rays are glad to have Joey Wendle back in the lineup. The second baseman hit .300 with 67 RBI’s last season.
The first place Rays continue to score with consistency, and they are averaging 4.86 runs per game, ranking them 14th in the Major Leagues. The Tampa Bay pitching staff features a stifling 2.85 team ERA, good for second in all of baseball. The Rays stand at 7-6 on their home field this season.
The Kansas City Royals are:
- 0-8 in their last 8 games against the Rays heading into Monday’s action.
- 5-15 in their last 20 games overall.
- 1-4 in their last 5 Tuesday games.
The Tampa Bay Rays are:
- 4-0 in their last 4 home games against the Royals.
- 9-0 in their last 9 games against a starter with a WHIP below 1.15.
- 4-1 in their last 5 Tuesday games.