Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#973 Kansas City Royals 9.5 vs.
#974 Oakland Athletics -260
Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 10:07pm EDT
Written by Nick Raffoul

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The Kansas City Royals will head on the road to the RingCentral Coliseum on Tuesday evening for the second game of their three-game series versus the Oakland Athletics.

The A’s have seized control of their destiny in the American League Wild Card race, taking control of the top Wild Card spot in a heated three-horse race. Oakland currently leads the Tampa Bay Rays by 1.5 games for home field advantage in the Wild Card game and they are three games up on the Cleveland Indians, who are on the outside looking in at the AL playoff picture. Can the A’s keep pace in the postseason race with a victory at home versus the Royals on Tuesday night?

Lopez hoping to finish season strong as starter

Kansas City is scheduled to turn to right-hander Jorge Lopez on Tuesday evening at the Coliseum in Oakland, California. Lopez has split time between the bullpen and the starting rotation for Kansas City in 2019, going 4-7 with a 6.09 ERA in 36 appearances (15 starts). The 26-year-old recently rejoined the rotation on August 31 and he’s been solid over his last two turns, allowing just three runs (two earned) in 11 ⅓ combined frames, winning both. He’s actually 3-0 since the All-Star Break, despite posting a 5.12 ERA, but he owns a healthy 1.59 ERA in two September starts.

Lopez has made only one appearance versus the A’s this season, but it was a forgettable one. The Royals’ right-hander gave up five runs in just 1 ⅔ frames in his last relief appearances back on August 26. This will be his first career start against Oakland.

Anderson finding success despite paltry strikeout rate

Veteran left-hander Brett Anderson will take the hill for the Athletics in the second game of their series versus the Royals. Anderson has been a key cog in the rotation this season, compiling a 12-9 record and a 4.07 ERA in 29 starts. Despite boasting a mediocre 4.61 K/9, he’s surrendered three earned runs or less in seven of his last eight outings. The A’s lefty as won each of his last two decisions on the mound and is fresh off surrendering two runs (one earned) in five innings of work on the road versus the AL-leading Houston Astros. Ironically, Anderson has been better on the road (8-3, 3.40 ERA) than at home in the pitcher-friendly Coliseum (4-6, 4.86 ERA) so far this season.

The 31-year-old has yet to face the Royals this season and he’s only made one start against them dating back to the 2016 season. It’s very possible Anderson erased that outing from his memory, as he surrendered a whopping eight earned runs and lasted just 1 ⅓ frames in his lone start versus the Royals during that span.

However, the A’s lefty will have a bit of an advantage the first time through the order in this one. According to Baseball Savant, current Royals have just six career plate appearances off Anderson heading into this matchup.

Best Bets for this Game

Full-Game Side Bet

Insiders Status:

Rating:

The A’s are surging towards the postseason right now, so it is hard not to side with them in this matchup. Neither pitcher had success in their previous outing versus the opposing team, but I’ll give Anderson the benefit of the doubt here considering current Royals have a total of six plate appearances off the A’s lefty heading into this matchup. KC has scored just 22 runs over the past week, which ranks 24th in the big leagues during that span, while Oakland is second in the big leagues with 57 runs over their last seven games. Take the A’s on the run line with confidence in this AL battle at the Coliseum on Tuesday.

Prediction: Oakland A’s -1.5

Full-Game Total Pick

Insiders Status:

Rating:

The over has to be the play here. In Anderson’s previous start versus the Royals, he gave up eight runs and recorded only four outs on the night. Meanwhile, Lopez is less than a month removed from giving up five runs and recording only five outs against the A’s back on August 26. Oakland is second in the big leagues in runs scored over the past week and they’ve hit a whopping 20 home runs during that span. Take this game to go over the projected total in Oakland on Tuesday.

Prediction: Over 9.5
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Written By Nick Raffoul

Shortly after graduating with an Honors in Business Administration, Nick turned his attention from traditional stocks and bonds to investing in the performance of sports teams. And has now joined our team here at Winners & Whiners. Nick uses a combination of advanced stats and historical data to create sports investment models to identify value and generate consistent profits. Let Nick win for you.