|CLEVELAND ( SALAZAR )|
KANSAS CITY ( VARGAS )
|973||CLEVELAND||+120||Ov 7.5,+105||+135||Ov 7.5,+100|
|974||KANSAS CITY||-130||Un 7.5,-125||-145||Un 7.5,-120|
|vs Left-handed Starters||19-20||-1.4||14-24||3.7||0.243||0.305||4.1||0.244||0.305|
|Past 7 Games||4-3||-0.9||1-6||3.0||0.258||0.300||3.3||0.217||0.280|
|vs Right-handed Starters||54-40||+6.5||44-44||4.2||0.262||0.307||3.7||0.250||0.309|
|Past 7 Games||4-3||-0.4||2-3||3.9||0.239||0.279||4.3||0.256||0.317|
|8/19/2014||BAUER(R)||@ MINNESOTA||GIBSON(R)||7-5||W||-115||8.5 un||O||11||4||0||8||5||1|
|8/20/2014||HOUSE(L)||@ MINNESOTA||NOLASCO(R)||5-0||W||-110||8.5 un||U||11||6||1||6||9||0|
|8/21/2014||KLUBER(R)||@ MINNESOTA||HUGHES(R)||1-4||L||-135||7 ov||U||5||5||0||8||7||1|
|8/26/2014||HOUSE(L)||@ CHI WHITE SOX||QUINTANA(L)||8-6||W||140||8 ev||O||14||8||0||10||4||1|
|8/27/2014||KLUBER(R)||@ CHI WHITE SOX||NOESI(R)||2-3||L||-180||7.5 ov||U||7||6||0||10||8||0|
|8/28/2014||CARRASCO(R)||@ CHI WHITE SOX||DANKS(L)||3-2||W||-120||8.5 un||U||9||10||2||6||6||0|
|8/29/2014||SALAZAR(R)||@ KANSAS CITY||VARGAS(L)|| |
|8/30/2014||BAUER(R)||@ KANSAS CITY||SHIELDS(R)|| |
|8/31/2014||HOUSE(L)||@ KANSAS CITY||DUFFY(L)|| |
|9/2/2014||CARRASCO(R)||DETROIT|| || |
|9/5/2014|| ||CHI WHITE SOX|| || |
|8/15/2014||DUFFY(L)||@ MINNESOTA||NOLASCO(R)||6-5||W||-140||8 ev||O||12||7||2||9||5||0|
|8/16/2014||VENTURA(R)||@ MINNESOTA||HUGHES(R)||1-4||L||-115||7.5 un||U||8||7||1||6||9||1|
|8/17/2014||GUTHRIE(R)||@ MINNESOTA||MILONE(L)||12-6||W||-115||8 ev||O||13||5||0||7||4||1|
|8/18/2014||VARGAS(L)||@ MINNESOTA||MAY(R)||6-4||W||-155||8 ev||O||13||10||0||7||4||0|
|8/19/2014||SHIELDS(R)||@ COLORADO||MATZEK(L)||7-4||W||-140||9.5 ov||O||11||8||1||11||10||0|
|8/20/2014||DUFFY(L)||@ COLORADO||DE LA ROSA(L)||2-5||L||-110||9.5 un||U||5||2||1||6||3||0|
|8/22/2014||VENTURA(R)||@ TEXAS||LEWIS(R)||6-3||W||-130||9 un||P||9||7||1||6||8||3|
|8/23/2014||GUTHRIE(R)||@ TEXAS||TEPESCH(R)||6-3||W||-120||9 ov||P||8||3||0||7||3||0|
|8/24/2014||VARGAS(L)||@ TEXAS||BAKER(R)||1-3||L||-150||9 un||U||6||6||2||11||11||0|
|8/25/2014||SHIELDS(R)||NY YANKEES||PINEDA(R)||1-8||L||-135||7.5 ov||O||7||5||1||13||6||0|
|9/5/2014|| ||@ NY YANKEES|| || |
|CLEVELAND: CLEVELAND (AP) - Jason Kipnis didn't want it to end. He had plenty of company.|
After the final out ended the club's magical, turnaround season so jarringly last October, Kipnis, who made his first All-Star team in 2013 and a few of his teammates lingered in the dugout and watched as Tampa Bay's players celebrated their 4-0 win in the AL wild-card playoff game.
One and done. Hardly the finish Cleveland wanted.
And once again, the city would remain without a major sports championship, a drought approaching its 50-year anniversary.
But despite their brief postseason appearance in manager Terry Francona's first year, the Indians intend to play in October again - and again.
''We don't want it to be a fluke,'' Kipnis said. ''We don't want to be a one-trick pony. We want to be at the top and we want to stay there.''
Hoping to build off their unexpected 92-win campaign, the Indians enter 2014 confident they can not only contend this season, but go even further.
During spring training in Arizona, first baseman Nick Swisher, who also serves as the club's high-energy hype man, handed out ''Unfinished Business'' T-shirts to his teammates.
The Indians aren't satisfied.
''Last season, hopefully, was a steppingstone that we needed to get us going in the right direction,'' Swisher said. ''Last year was that amazing year to get us in the right mind frame to say, `Hey, we can do this. We are a team. And people need to start recognizing it.'''
Cleveland had to win its final 10 games just to make the playoffs. The late-season kick wouldn't have been necessary if the Indians had played more consistently, and more evenness has been a focus for Francona, who feels his club has the makings to do something special again.
''I love our team,'' said the AL's manager of the year. ''I love coming to the ballpark and watching them play. They are easy to like because they try hard. When you can show up with a group of guys and you respect the way they go about things it makes the challenging times more fulfilling. We know we can do it now. We've got to try and go do it better.''
|KANSAS CITY: KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - James Shields thinks back to last year, thoughtfully piecing together what was missing from the Kansas City Royals as they made a late push for the postseason.|
The pitching was strong. The offense was coming around. The defense was sublime.
He finally settled on experience.
''These guys that didn't realize or have never been to September, when you're fighting for a playoff spot, now you have that experience,'' Shields said. ''And I think that was one of the things we were lacking last season, the experience. You tend to put too much on your shoulders. And I think the second half we definitely relaxed and put all that aside and had fun and played the game the way we know how to play, and it showed.
''I think with the experience factor now,'' Shields concluded, ''we're ready to go.''
After finishing 86-76 a year ago, and contending into September for the first time in a decade, the Royals have their sets sight squarely on their first playoff appearance since 1985 this year.
Anything less would be a disappointment. Anything less would be a failure.
''Last year was a blast. When the end of the season came in Chicago, nobody wanted to leave,'' first baseman Eric Hosmer said. ''They knew how close we were. We were right there. And it left a good taste in everyone's mouth going into the offseason, knowing how good everyone can be.''
Indeed, the Royals return most of their key players from a year ago, signing left-hander Jason Vargas to replace their only significant loss, starting pitcher Ervin Santana. They also upgraded at their weakest spots, trading for Norichika Aoki to play right field and bat leadoff and signing Omar Infante to settle a second base position that has been a black hole for years.
All of which left the notoriously frugal franchise with a record-setting payroll.
Royals manager Ned Yost hopes all those moves will pay off for a rotation that was among the league's best last year, and an offense that was among the league's worst.
''It's going to be a lineup that has offensive sequence from one to nine. You're not going to have any dead spots,'' Yost said. ''You're not going to get something going and then bam, run into a wall and have to get going again. At least, I hope not. I don't think so.''
So with more experience and an upgraded lineup, Kansas City enters its season opener Sunday at Detroit with boundless enthusiasm.
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER AL PREVIEW (CLEVELAND-KANSAS CITY) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
*Indians-Royals Preview* ========================
By JORDAN GARRETSON STATS Writer
Cleveland (67-64) at Kansas City (74-58), 8:10 p.m. EDT
After putting together gems in back-to-back victories, the Kansas City Royals' pitching imploded in the club's series finale.
But given Jason Vargas' recent history against the Cleveland Indians, the Royals have to like their chances to get back on track Friday night in Kansas City.
The Royals (74-59) allowed a combined two runs and 10 hits in positioning itself to sweep Minnesota. Jeremy Guthrie was shaky Thursday, however, giving up five runs and nine hits over six innings. Four relievers combined for three hitless innings until Bruce Chen gave up six runs, five hits and two walks in the final inning of an 11-5, 10-inning defeat.
Kansas City, which lost for the fifth time in 19 home games, still leads Detroit by 1 1/2 games in the AL Central.
Vargas (10-6, 3.17 ERA) is 2-0 with a 1.95 ERA in his last four matchups with Cleveland, including a 9-5 victory June 10 when he allowed three runs in 7 2-3 innings. He also threw a three-hitter in his last game at Kauffman Stadium, a 3-0 victory over Oakland on Aug. 13.
The left-hander is 2-1 with a 1.67 ERA over his last four starts, though he surrendered a season high-matching 11 hits along with two earned runs over six innings in a 3-1 loss at Texas on Sunday. Vargas' command was shaky - he issued four walks after walking five over 50 2-3 innings in his previous eight starts.
"It was a start that he really had to grind out. He didn't have any clean innings," manager Ned Yost said. "I thought he did a phenomenal job of keeping us in the game, getting us through six innings."
The Indians (68-64) have won four of five, including a 3-2 road victory over the Chicago White Sox on Thursday to stay within four games of the league's second wild-card spot.
"The thing is, try not to look too far ahead," said Michael Bourn, who was 3 for 5 with two triples. "That's the biggest key - don't focus on what everybody else is doing every day. All we can control is what's in (the clubhouse), then go play."
Bourn is 9 for 22 during a five-game hitting streak.
Danny Salazar (4-6, 4.52) looks to continue his recent improvement - going 3-2 with a 3.27 ERA in his last six starts, though he hasn't won in the last three. He posted a 1-4 record and 5.53 ERA through his first eight outings before being demoted to Triple-A.
"He's always been a bit of a slow starter," pitching coach Mickey Callaway told MLB's official website. "We've always seen his velocity, like in April, it averages around 92 (mph), and then in September, he averaged 96 last year."
He matched a season high July 27 by throwing seven innings while allowing three runs in a 10-3 win at Kansas City. The Indians have won only two of their last 11 there.
Billy Butler is 5 for 8 with three doubles versus Salazar and 6 for 9 with two homers and five RBIs in his last three against Cleveland.
Six of Mike Moustakas' 15 home runs and 12 of his 49 RBIs this season have come in his last 11 matchups with the Indians.
Carlos Santana is 12 for 23 with six homers and nine RBIs over his last six against the Royals, with five of the homers coming in that four-game series at Kansas City last month.
|Last Updated: 9/19/2014 12:51:33 PM EST|