|4:15 PM PT5:15 PM MT6:15 PM CT7:15 PM ET19:15 ET23:15 GMT7:15 4:15 PM MST6:15 PM EST6:45 PM VEN3:15 UAE (+1)6:15 PM CT, September 1, 2018
Ewing M. Kauffman Stadium, Kansas City, Missouri Attendance: 15,358
Royals look to remain on roll vs. Orioles
Baltimore Orioles at Kansas City Royals
- The Orioles and Royals combined for 75 hits in their three-game set from May 8-20; that 25.0 combined hits per game (75/3) is the third-largest of any matchup in MLB this season (Twins vs. Cubs, 27.7; Indians vs. Blue Jays, 25.3).
- These two teams have a combined winning percentage of .308 in 2018. In the wild-card era (since 1994), only one series has begun in which the two teams had a lower combined winning percentage (at least 50 games into the season): Tigers vs. Padres, series began 6/3/03 - .277 combined winning percentage.
- Adam Jones's home run on Wednesday was his 600th career extra-base hit, and his 45th of the season. Only Robinson Cano (13), Nelson Cruz (10), and Andrew McCutchen (10) have longer active streaks of 45 XBH in more consecutive seasons than Jones (9).
- Brad Keller has allowed a home run in each of his past three starts, but has allowed just six this season. His 0.51 HR/9 mark ranks second in the AL behind Trevor Bauer (minimum 100 innings).
- Andrew Cashner has a 2.45 career ERA against the Royals in four starts, but hasn't earned a win in any of those games. Clayton Kershaw vs. Oak and Brandon McCarthy vs. Was are the only active starting pitchers with a lower ERA against a single opponent to never earn a win (min. four starts vs. opponent).
- Whit Merrifield has three multi-hit games on his four-game hitting streak, and has five home runs in August with just four doubles. Over his career, he has 84 doubles and 20 home runs in all months other than August, but in August has just five career doubles and 11 home runs.
- Encarnacion, Santana moved in 3-way deal
- Mets bring back Familia for 3 yrs., $30M
- Dodgers to ink P Kelly for 3 years, $25M
- M's GM pulls off trade from hospital bed
- Rangers sign RHP Lynn for 3 years, $30M
The Kansas City Royals have a chance on Saturday to lock up a third consecutive series for the first time this season.
Kansas City (43-91) is playing another team struggling as much -- the Baltimore Orioles -- and the Royals posted a 9-2 victory in the opener to three-game Friday night at home. They banged out three homers in the win.
That win stopped the Orioles (40-95) from tying a season high for consecutive victories (four).
They'll meet again Saturday at Kauffman Stadium when Dylan Bundy (7-13, 5.37 ERA) starts for the Orioles against Heath Fillmyer (2-1, 4.21) in a battle of right-handers.
The Royals' recent streak started when they took two of three from Cleveland last weekend and swept a two-game set from Detroit after that. Now, Kansas City has won six of its last seven games, the team's best stretch this season.
Power helped the Royals in Friday's win. They belted out three homers in the victory, including one from Cam Gallagher, who had just been called up earlier in the day. That was his first home run this season and the second of his brief major league career.
Home runs have been a problem for Bundy recently and all season, in fact. Bundy has given up the most homers in the majors this year (34) and allowed eight in July and eight in August.
He has a combined record of 1-6 in the past two months after going 3-0 in June.
Bundy has left the ball too close to the plate too many times and is working on correcting that issue. When the right-hander's pitches stay on the corner, he finds much more success.
"It's frustrating for Dylan because he doesn't want to be giving up anything," Orioles manager Buck Showalter told the media earlier this season. "I've talked to him about it."
Bundy has a 1-1 career record with a 5.87 ERA against Kansas City.
For the Royals, Fillmyer is a rookie who will be making his ninth career start -- and 13th appearance in the major leagues. He never has faced the Orioles.
Both teams made some moves before the game. The Royals acquired pitcher Jerry Vasto from the Colorado Rockies in exchange for catcher Drew Butera, a popular player who was with the team during its World Series run three years ago.
Butera was a backup catcher, and it was clear the Royals were sad about losing him.
"He was perfect for this team and knowing his role," Royals manager Ned Yost told the media Friday. "He was always ready to play when he was called upon. He was just the perfect backup catcher, especially for our situation."
Kansas City also recalled Gallagher from Triple-A Omaha and returned outfielder Brian Goodwin from his rehab assignment and reinstated him from the disabled list.
Baltimore recalled outfielder Joey Rickard from Triple-A Norfolk and reinstated pitcher Jhan Marinez from the disabled list (right hamstring strain). After clearing waivers, the Orioles assigned him to Triple-A Norfolk.
The Orioles also designated outfielder Craig Gentry for assignment.
Updated September 1, 2018