Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#4925 San Diego Padres vs.
#4926 Kansas City Royals
Saturday, August 27, 2022 at 7:10pm EDT
Written by Mark Ruelle

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The San Diego Padres continue their weekend set in Kansas City on Saturday night against the Royals. The Padres are clinging to the 3rd and final wildcard spot in the National League and that appears to be their only avenue to the playoffs with the Dodgers nearly insurmountable lead in the NL West Division. The Royals are well out of the playoff picture in the American League but are using this time to feature the team's young talent like Bobby Witt Jr. and MJ Melendez. On the mound on Saturday night will be veteran righty Yu Darvish (10-7, 3.39) of the Padres while the Royals are going with Daniel Lynch. First pitch is scheduled for 7:10pm EST.

It is Getting Late Early

The San Diego Padres went into this season's trade deadline with a 'win at all costs' attitude. Unfortunately, after reformatting the team's lineup and bullpen, the Padres have struggled to actually win. Since the August 3rd trade deadline, the Padres are just 8-12 heading into Friday night's opener in Kansas City. The team was swept in a brief two-game series by the Guardians in San Diego before heading to the midwest. In the opener on Friday night, the Padres quiet offense finally came alive as they pounded out 19 hits and 13 runs in a big win to open the series. Ha-Seong Kim went 3-for-6 with a career-high six RBI in the win.

The Padres revamped lineup has had difficulty since acquiring Juan Soto, Josh Bell and Brandon Drury to improve the team's offensive output. The team has hit just .229 since August 3rd and is averaging 3.9 runs per game. The Padres have one of the deepest and most talented starting staffs in baseball but the lineup must produce for the Padres to get on a roll. On the mound on Saturday night in KC will be Yu Darvish. The veteran has an impressive 18 QS in his 23 turns this season. In his last five games, Darvish is 1-3 with a 3.78 ERA. He has allowed 31 hits in 33 innings pitched while striking out 10.3 per nine innings.

Revamping the Royals

Unlike the Padres, the Royals are clearly in a 'win later' mode as the team has focused on developing its young roster this season. The team has two above-average rookies in the lineup in Bobby Witt Jr and AJ Melendez. The duo hit at the top of the Royals order and are in the top-five for the team in nearly every major category. The Royals came into this series winners of two of the first three games of this home stand. The Royals defeated the White Sox in a quick, one-game set and then split a two-game series with the Diamondbacks. On Friday night against the Padres, the Royals pitching staff paid the price as the Padres' powerful lineup broke out of its slump to the tune of 13 runs and 19 hits.

The Royals are hitting just .179 in their last ten games and scoring just 2.4 runs per game over that span. Not surprisingly, KC is just 3-7 in their last ten games. With the recent injury to Zack Greinke forcing him to the IL and the recent move to put former starter Brad Keller into the bullpen, the Royals are going with Daniel Lynch in Saturday night's matchup. Keller will certainly be available to throw multiple innings out of the pen.

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The Padres lineup has struggled almost from the outset of the additions of Soto, Bell and company. The team has struggled to find the right lineup and has failed to put up the kind of numbers expected once the team inserted these power bats into the lineup. All that will change in a big way on Saturday night. In the heat and humidity of Kaufman Stadium in KC, the ball will jump off the Padres bats and a team that, on paper, should be one of the most productive offenses in baseball will finally live up to their advanced billing. Kansas City is in the unfortunate position of having to scramble to find a starter with the loss of Greinke and the Padres lineup will jump at the chance to take their cuts. For the Royals, they will undoubtedly find the sailing far less smooth against the veteran right-hander Darvish. The Royals bats have gone ice cold over the last ten games and the highly efficient Darvish and his 18 quality starts should have a field day with this lineup.

Take the Padres with the run line.

Prediction: Padres -1.5

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Kaufman Stadium should play small for the Padres lineup on Saturday night. I expect a run total exceeding 7+ runs in this one for a team itching to break out. The Royals come in with the third-worst bullpen ERA in baseball and that very bullpen will, unfortunately, be relied upon in this game for the banged-up Royals staff. Darvish will do his part to keep the scoring down against the punchless Royals lineup but KC will just need to produce 1-3 runs to get this game past the total based on what I expect out of the Padres.

Take the over.

Prediction: Over 8.5
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Written By Mark Ruelle , "Mark Ruelle"

Mark has been a sports fanatic since childhood. He is also an avid follower of sports analytics and has used it in his own betting analysis for over two decades. Now we have Mark on our team here at Stat Salt. He holds degrees in marketing, broadcasting, and English and uses this vast array of assets to dissect and analyze game matchups. Mark will provide you with a wide variety of statistics to consider and a strong opinion in each matchup that he covers. Please follow him daily for an up-to-the-minute analysis of all the important games.